Building a sustainable business – WPMU style.

In case anyone’s interested – here’s how we’re making money with Edublogs these days and also, as implied, why we’re doing it the way we’re doing it.

It’s also intended as a guide for anyone who wants to look into starting a business based on WordPress MU – and I think there’s a lot of opportunity out there for this so with luck this’ll help some people out too.

It’s one of the longest things I’ve written in a while (barring client emails / proposals :) so I’d love to know peoples thoughts. Whack your critiques of my methods over there, your critique of what we’re doing at Edublogs over here.

To preempt the (fair number) of people who are upset about the direction we’re taking, all I ask you to consider are these two things:

a. How do you think it is possible to run such a large operation as Edublogs without a solid revenue stream? Would you rather it didn’t exist at all? Have I missed out any obvious solutions to making the site profitable and successful?

b. In terms of value for money – feel free to self-host (in fact, I’d encourage it, for many of the same reasons Stephen puts out there and also because it’s a heck of a lot of fun) – but… it’ll cost you probably min $10 p/month (for decent hosts) and then there’s sourcing the themes, learning FTP, configuring the site, upgrades, squashing bugs, security and support etc…. or for $39.95 per year you can get on with what’s most important (blogging, teaching & learning) and remove ads from 30 other sites too.

And you save $80 in hosting fees :)

Anyway, looking forward to peoples thoughts!