An Ad-Free Opportunity: Seeking Feedback from TSLL Readers

Aug 27, 2017

TSLL blog began in December of 2009. In January 2011, the first ad went live. Since that time, I have played with a handful of different options to keep the blog engaging, attractive, but also free for readers to enjoy.

The blogging industry, which is a small, but growing and ever-changing component of the virtual landscape, is an entity that is constantly changing forms, adjusting to markets and causing changes to the market as well.  But something I am most appreciative of is the readers new and long-time of TSLL who continue to stop by, read the most recent post, or a post from the archives, shop the TSLL Boutique and from time to time say hello by sharing a comment or sending an email.

It is my goal to create a space you enjoy visiting that brings calm, inspiration, and motivation to reach your full potential and live a life of quality over quantity.

The one aspect of blogging that I like is that readers can stop by and read for free. The reason I am able to make this possible is by placing ads on the blog. Ad revenue is the primary source of income for TSLL as it enables projects to be invested in, books to be purchased and reviewed, the production of the podcast, trips and excursions, exploration with food and new recipes, the creation of the design and illustrations, and many other moving parts that a teaching salary alone would not support. However, I also understand that ads can be annoying, which is why we here at TSLL are working with the option of making an Ad-Free version of TSLL available.

While we are just beginning to design what will be offered, the most important part is that the blog remains exactly the same as you see it right now but sans (without) advertisements. How? Upon paying a small monthly subscription (much like Netflix or Amazon Prime), once you login in on one device (desktop, tablet, phone, etc.), you will experience an ad-free TSLL each time you visit (you will have to login on other devices for the ad-free version).

In order to devise an option that works best for TSLL readers, we have a short six question survey that we would like you to complete. Here is the link.

If you have additional comments for questions, feel free to leave them in the comments on this post or email me.

I appreciate your time, your voice and for those who have reached out to me with this request, thank you. I heard you, and I hope to bring you an experience that upon visiting TSLL each time brightens and enlivens your everydays.

~Click here to take the survey



24 thoughts on “An Ad-Free Opportunity: Seeking Feedback from TSLL Readers

  1. I don’t mind the ads because I am assuming that they are judged by you to be something that would appeal to your readers and, also, fit into your concept of SLL. If that were not the case, I would not continue subscribing to your blog. I would be interested in your response to my thoughts.

    1. Adele, one of the aspects that drew me to my ad partnership was that they do have quality ads. Any ad that I do not feel aligns I request it be removed. Thank you for sharing your experience. And just so you know, the blog will continue as it is right now to be free for readers to peruse as often as they want. This is post and exploration into an ad-free option is in response to readers who have been requesting such an option. I sincerely appreciate your time and interest.

  2. Hi Shannon,

    Generally I don’t mind the ads because I realize they help keep the blog going and compensate your hard work. I would like to share, however, that I experience that they really slow down my experience visiting the blog. Pages can take longer to load, which I often find frustrating.

  3. Shannon-
    I read and enjoy your posts as much or more than some of the print magazines I receive in the mail. I realize that the ads make compensation for your work possible. The thought of being able to peruse the blog without the ads is exciting. I would definitely be willing to pay a recurring fee for this – much the same as I pay for a magazine or newspaper subscription.

  4. Hi Shannon! I don’t mind curated ads from you (products you’ve vetted and trust, and which you find value in) perhaps b/c it seems we have similar interests 🙂 and I love to hear your latest favorites and discover finds from you. I’m not sure if there is a way to bring about more curated ads instead of random which I believe are based on google. Just a thought!

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience on the blog. Regarding the ads, working with Adthrive, I can deny or give access to any of the ads. If there is ever an ad you dislike, please let me know and I can eliminate it completely. Thank you again Molly.

  5. Hello Shannon

    I don’t mind the ads at all. Period. I enjoy reading / rereading your blog all the
    time. Lucky me!

    So— many things changed for the better because of your blog. Lucky me and I
    am blessed.

  6. Hi Shannon, good on you to do a survey. Just did one myself! One thing I’ve learned is that it’s so hard to please everyone. My home page is ad free and I don’t work with an ad network but I’ve considered it. Blogging starts to get realllllly expensive and I feel like people know that and understand the presence of ads. As a reader, I really don’t mind them at all. We’ve come to expect them and I scroll on past.

  7. Hello Shannon As Diane says above, I personally have become used to the ads and scroll past but the flashing ads are particularly annoying. I value, enjoy and appreciate the pages and podcasts you bring to us. Vetting and dealing with ads must take much of your valuable time? I would be happy to go with the version that supports you best and means you are able to continue with TSLL. Best wishes from the UK.

  8. Hi Shannon,
    I don’t mind the ads generally , it is interesting to see which ones you choose to have on the blog.
    The flashing ones are a bit annoying though, they are distracting , which perhaps the advertiser doesnt realise is counterproductive !
    If you do decide to go down the subscription route, it would be helpful to give your prices in other currencies as well as dollars.
    I know that you have many readers in France and the UK, as well as other countries outside the USA , and the ability to quickly see how much a subscription would cost without clicking onto a separate money conversion chart would be helpful .
    I really enjoy the blog and the podcasts, and as well as reading and listening to the current ones, often go into the archive .
    I like the fact that you often link to previous articles on similar topics , at the bottom of the current one, and usually check out all the links .
    I ‘ discovered ‘ your work last summer , so I have had a lovely backlog of posts and podcasts to catch up with and enjoy .
    Thanks for sharing !
    Anne

  9. Hi Shannon.
    Firstly I’d like to say that I love your blog and podcast! I’ve commented before to say how reading and listening helped me through a very difficult life change and, now I’m on the other side of all that I love it even more! I appreciate the fact that you have undertaken this survey – it shows that you really care about your readers/subscribers and their opinions. I will be happy with whatever makes it work for you – I understand the costs involved in blogging and ultimately it has to make sense for you financially. The ads don’t really bother me, although I do find the flashing ads distracting, but whatever you choose to do is alright with me! Thanks for all you amazing work!
    Much love, Rachel x

  10. Like the other responders, I enjoy reading your work so much and understand the ad reason for being (hate the flashers, too). Would it be possible/feasible to offer both fee and free-with-ads options? Also, is it possible to offer an ad-free print option as I often wish I had a print copy to read and mark and re-read? Thank you for your words. I taught school for forty-three years and well understand the exhaustion and need for renewal generated by our profession.

    1. Both options will ABSOLUTELY be available! 🙂 The way the blog is set up now will always remain. We are just contemplating offering an additional opportunity for readers who would prefer an ad-free experience. Don’t worry about what you have been enjoying changing. We will always edit and tweak ads, but there will ALWAYS be a free version. Always. 🙂

  11. Hi Shannon,

    As a reader for many years I feel ads are just part of it… blogging is very hard work and you should be compensated for it.

    The ads don’t bother me enough that I would want a paid subscription I think that would be a tremendous amount of extra work for you collecting subscription fees etc. For example ..I remember when I used to buy the September issue of Vogue and loved the ads. 🙂

    Just keep doing what you do so well you can never please everyone ..I llove your blog..you are an inspiration to us all.

    Judi k

  12. I wanted to add my two cents as well. I don’t mind ads on blogs but yours are imbedded into your paragraphs and it doesn’t compliment the look of your blog at all. And they cover up your writing while the page loads. I usually click off out of frustration. I read all my blogs on a kindle tablet so I wasn’t sure if the reason for the ad placement was because of my media choice. I love your space on the internet! Have you thought about just side bar ads? Or sponsored posts with companies you believe in?

  13. Shannon, I just want you to know that I really do look forward to reading your blog each week, so much so that I set aside time and make myself a latte to enjoy as I peruse it. It seems to be getting pretty rare these days to find someone who actually “thinks” and “ponders” instead of just posting about the scandalous superficial. I appreciate you and enjoy following you on your journey.

    I don’t have the extra money to pay for a subscription, so I’m happy to find that the free subscription will still be available. As one of your previous posters mentioned, I find my computer really slowing down (sometimes to a complete stop, and I have to turn off the computer, then restart it!) with some ads. That happens with flashing ads, constantly scrolling ads, ads with plug-ins as well as slowdowns/stops each time I change pages on your site due to plug-ins and “scripts”. Sometimes I get so frustrated I just stop reading the blog that week… I assume it’s mostly because I have an old computer, but if it is anything you can and are willing to do something about, I would be forever grateful… Keep up the good work!

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