Site upgrades and premium memberships

Hi everyone!

As you may or may not be aware I’ve been busy for the last couple of days upgrading parts of the site that were long overdue. Some of these upgrades will be obvious and others are just in the background to ensure that the site continues to run smoothly.

Marketplace improvements :brick:

The big major change that you will notice is that the marketplace area now looks slightly different. This will give it more of an eBay like feel so that you can quickly browse the listings of what’s for sale. I will also be enforcing strict new guidelines for new posts in the marketplace to ensure that it’s easier than ever for you to see what’s for sale, how much it is and where it’s located. Given the sheer amount of existing posts it will take time to fully see the benefits of these new guidelines, but I will do my best to clean up old posts over the next week or so.

Premium Memberships :fire:

One of the most difficult parts of running a community like this is striking the right balance between providing a free platform for everybody to use but also ensuring that the site can pay for itself. Up until now the site has never paid for itself (with the exception of a brief period where I experimented with Patreon supporters - thank you to those that contributed) and the site has been running in various guises since 2012.

Therefore I’ve decided to offer a premium membership to the site which will cost £5.00 per year. This will grant you access to create as many posts as you like in the marketplace and will eventually remove ads from the site (once I’ve implemented ads for non premium members). It will also help support the site financially so that I can continue to improve things and keep the site running, and I will no doubt be adding other benefits in the future.

Non-premium members can of course still reply to posts in the marketplace and see everything there, but they will no longer be able to post anything without signing up for a premium membership.

You can sign up here.

Locations :world_map:

It’s now possible to add a more specific location to your user profile and see where other EV owners are in the world on the user map. Bear in mind it it won’t show much until people add it to their profiles. Please also be mindful that any logged in user will be able to see your location, so please don’t be too specific. For example I’ve just added my town.

It’s also now possible to add a location to posts in the marketplace and this will allow other users to view a map of things for sale and wanted items.

SSL :lock:

I’ve also upgraded the site to use SSL which ensures that all of your data is fully encrypted and secure. This is even more important now that you can subscribe to a premium membership and ensures that your card details stay secure when being sent to the payment processor.

Future improvements

I have some other improvements to the site that are on my road map and I will aim to get to these in the coming weeks.

As always, if you have any questions or feedback please reply to this topic!

James :slight_smile:

3 Likes

This sounds like a lot of work and is much appreciated.

Premium membership purchased.

:slight_smile:

1 Like

I’d be happy to pay for Premium membership, but can I pay via paypal?
Chris

@OxonChris it would be preferable if you could use the automated process if possible. I can assure you the current setup is just as secure as PayPal, it uses Stripe payments and is a fully automated process that manages your membership on the site.

If it’s not possible I can take payment using PayPal for now and I’ll have to manually manage your membership on the forum. Obviously I don’t want to set a precedent for that though as it makes running the forum more complicated.

Please PM me if you’d still like to go the PayPal route. Thanks

I just noticed a couple of new symbols next to names saying ‘EV owners team’.
Is that premium members badges?

No the evowners team are me (admin) and the moderators.

I can certainly add a badge for premium members though if this is something people would like.

Thanks @peter-ss for being the first premium member! Very much appreciated.

Well personally I think they £5 per year is well worth it for the resource that the forum has provided. It’s such a wealth of knowledge and information.
Thank you James for keeping it going all this time.

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Cheers Jeff!

5 quid paid with pleasure, I tip my hat for all your efforts

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Thanks very much to those that have upgraded so far!

If you use the link to subscribe, does it auto renew every year? If so, can you put a “one-off” option button as well? If something happened to you or the site my worry is that it would auto-renew and would be a pain to cancel. Cheers

It’s yearly at the moment but the plugin I’m using is launching a one time payment feature soon. Once it does, I’ll switch it on.

@moojuiceuk In the meantime, I’m going to set up a page that gives you full control over your subscription (updating payment details, cancelling the subscription etc). It’s externally hosted by the payment processor (Stripe) so that if anything does happen to me or this site you will have full control over the subscription and it will be easily cancelled. I’m out today, but hopefully I can get that set up later on tonight.

1 Like