Svbtle, the stylish blogging platform that opened up to all users at the beginning of the year, has pivoted into a paid-for service, which costs $6 per month.
Created by prominent designer Dustin Curtis, Svbtle was initially an invite-only platform for selected users when in launched in 2011. That changed in January of this year, when it opened to all who could sign up for free — Curtis says that the new membership fee will allow the service “live forever.”
Svbtle is actually free to use for an initial 30-day period, after which payment kicks it. It now allows new users to register a Svbtle domain — e.g. thenextweb.svbtle.com — for the first time, although they can replace it with a custom domain name if they prefer.
Svbtle now costs $6/mo, so we can keep going forever. What can we do to make it worth $6 to you? firstname.lastname@example.org https://t.co/FDPOQnIKGh
— Svbtle (@Svbtle) August 18, 2014
Curtis admitted to TNW that he made the pricing announcement quietly, but he said that the move has been significant since it has “totally changed the dynamic of how people write, what they write, and how often.”
“There’s something mutually magical about selling something for money,” he explained. “For both the maker and the buyer.”
Above: Dustin Curtis’ own blog is hosted on Svbtle
The subscription fee is being applied to new users only, which means those who already have a Svbtle blog can continue to use it for free. There are features that are locked to paying users only, however, and that includes the ability to let viewers subscribe to your blog for updates via email.
Curtis declined to give specific metrics for Svbtle users or usage, but he did tease that a number of other new features are headed to the service soon.
In Svbtle’s case, it has a vibrant community of writers who produce quality content. However, Medium has grown into a significant company that dominates the scene as a platform for casual or leisurely blogging, so it makes sense that Svbtle is pivoting its offering towards those who take their writing seriously enough to pay for it.
The new pricing brings Svbtle into direct competition with Ghost, the crowd-funded service that costs upwards of $5 per month with membership packages based on the volume of visitors that a blog receives per month.
New users can sign up to Svbtle at svbtle.com/signup.
Want to get blogging again, check this out: The 15 best blogging and publishing platforms on the Internet today
Headline image via Pure Solution / Shutterstock