Hi all, I felt the need to do this blog post to update you all on some current developments with this blog and what will be happening in the near future.
When I first started to post the Strictly Spoiler, the main reason for doing so (besides the ad traffic it brings – more on that later) was to highlight how ridiculous it is for the BBC to pre record the results a day in advance in front of a live audience for their flagship reality TV series in a day and age where information can be transmitted globally in a fraction of a second. I’d had some success posting The Voice Spoilers in 2012 and thought it would be a good idea to do the same for Strictly. And it was!
For the last two years, posting the Strictly Spoiler has caused a minor increase in my site hits providing on average 3-4k hits over the course of a weekend and earning me a few pence in ad revenue to put towards my hosting costs. Then 2 weeks ago that changed and over 6000 of you viewed the spoiler. Last week over 7500 of you viewed it and a change to my ad formats increased my revenue from a few pence to a few pounds. And then this week views skyrocketed and at time of writing this post are
over 9000 (WHAT?? NINE THOUSAND???) 10414 with ad revenue of approximately £12.50 £16.90.
Sadly this increase in traffic has had one side effect. My web host couldn’t (or more accurately wouldn’t) cope with the influx of traffic as soon as the spoiler was posted taking the site down for approximately 10 minutes. If you were affected by this minor outage I apologise. I’ve been unprepared for the exponential increase in the site traffic and this was the first time my site has gone down due to capacity issues. However this is still unacceptable and may only get worse as my traffic continues to increase. However this couldn’t have come at a better time really as my hosting is up for renewal next month and as things stand I won’t be renewing it with my current provider as they want to quadruple my hosting costs to increase my capacity and even with the increase in ad revenue this is not an option. So this site will be doing something it hasn’t done in about 8 years. I will be moving hosts and reinvesting the increase in ad revenue in providing a site that can cope with the demands now being placed on it.
My current plans are to research and choose a new hosting provider over the course of the next week and sign up to them and begin the process of moving content over. This site will stay with the current host next weekend and if this means the site goes down again due to traffic volumes, I apologise in advance but unfortunately this process will take some time.
On Tuesday 4th November 2014 I plan to take this site offline whilst it transfers to the new host. I’ve chosen this date as it gives me time to select and sign up to the new host and obviously I don’t want to be switching near to a weekend as it would mean this site would be down and unable to provide spoilers for that weekend. Also it can take 48 hours for a change in hosting to fully propagate over the internet and I want to make sure that when I do make this change that everything is fully set up for you guys in time for a weekend.
I will have prepared and transferred most of my content over prior to flipping the switch, or at least that is my intention, so any downtime should be kept to a minimum and for most of you who search for the spoiler, or who follow me on twitter which has seen a similar rise in followers, it is unlikely you will notice any difference apart from a boost in site performance once the switch has completed.
Sorry this post has been a bit waffley but I needed to update you guys and apologise for the brief outage both yesterday and when I initiate the switchover. I would like to thank each and every one of you for both taking the time to visit this site to view the spoiler and for reading this far in the post.
I’ll see you next weekend for the spoiler and then over at my new host for the weekend after.
Complaints to UKHost4U (http://www.ukhost4u.co.uk)
Further Update 29/10/2014 – further to this post I have been researching alternative hosts. I have also made some under the hood changes to how this site’s pages are delivered which may increase my server’s capacity during traffic spikes. I will be monitoring the situation on Saturday Night after which I will make a decision about whether moving hosts is still necessary