My commitment is complete – 6 months worth of weekly Sticklers. This was a test to see if a paid subscription model would be viable. The answer in a nutshell is “no”, as the numbers just don’t add up. As I’ve mentioned before, reaching the solvers of my newspaper puzzles has been very difficult, resulting in only a faithful but relatively small group of solvers (thank you!) doing the Stickler each week. In financial terms, even with a significant number of solvers making some kind of contribution or buying a Boxed Set, payments wouldn’t cover the amount of time and effort put in.
Here are some stats:
Average unique website visitors – 3000 per month
Number of people who contributed (over 6 months) – 48
Number of people who bought a Boxed Set – 53
Average number who solved each Stickler Weekly (by downloading a PDF or solving online) – 160
These are good numbers in essence but clearly there needs to be more regular visitors who contribute in some way in order for there to be any change in what’s offered, or for me to make a long-term committment.
Allowing open access (that is, no requirement to log on or register) to puzzles, hints and solutions, is a concession that ultimately reduces my ability to promote and do marketing, and to analyse exactly who is using the blog. I am currently reviewing this approach and would appreciate feedback on the subject. (BTW, if you want to be included on my mailing list but don’t want to post a comment on the blog, just email me and say hello).
After much thought I’ve decided to continue with the Stickler Weekly and its website accompaniments for the time being and I will strive to remain some kind of force in the Australian crossword industry. This may change if paid (non-crossword) work encroaches on my crossword-setting time.
How you can help:
- Tell people about the Stickler Weekly (numbers are growing, so word is getting out)
- Leave comments, ask questions, make requests on the blog: get people talking about the Stickler Weekly
- Contribute financially
- Buy a Boxed Set
Clearly Stickler Caps aren’t for everyone. If you can think of merchandise that you would buy with a Stickler logo on it, please let me know.
Thanks for doing The Stickler Weekly – it will return next week.
Best and thanks