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What Do I Need to Do to Get You Into a Membership Today?

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 30, 2020

Always Be Closing

Hey look, I’m not going to give you the hard sell this year. (Ok, I never do — it’s just not in my nature.) Four years ago I introduced the kottke.org membership program so that folks reading the site could directly support my efforts here, and it’s been wonderfully successful. Or to put it another way, without that member support, this site would not exist.

Why wouldn’t it exist? The online advertising market for small sites like this sucks (especially for non-vertical sites) and I’ve nearly stopped linking to Amazon, losing the corresponding affiliate revenue that comprised 15-20% of my total annual revenue. As much as I like linking to Bookshop.org instead, the revenue from their affiliate program has only filled a tiny bit of that absence.1 Member support is far and away the thing that’s keeping me going here.

I know these are աɛɨʀɖ ȶɨʍɛֆ and that can make it tough to support things like non-essential websites. If you can’t swing it right now, please don’t! And don’t worry about it. If you’re currently a member worried about your finances and a refund of this year’s membership amount would help out, send me an email and let’s make that happen. But if you find value in this site and can manage it, I’d appreciate you supporting the site with a membership, especially if you’re someone who values the switch to Bookshop.org and that the advertising on the site is both minimal and relevant. And if you’re already a member and want to remain so (or even to bump up your membership level), maybe log in to check your status — it’s easy for a credit card to expire and you miss the email…

Ok, that was maybe a bit of a hard sell. But it’s over now. Thanks for hearing me out, I’ll follow up next week with a brochure about that Playa del Carmen timeshare, and you have yourself a lovely weekend. *big gold-toothed Joe Pesci from Home Alone smile*

  1. Bookshop’s affiliate percentage is much more generous than Amazon’s is, but their prices are higher, popular books are often out of stock, shipping is slower than Amazon’s, and their site search is not great. I support their mission, but they have some work to do to make this a viable shopping experience for people who aren’t 100% into their goal of helping small bookstores.