As most of you know, Wikidot started as a "free wiki" service. For the first two years we were providing free websites for everybody who needed it without any charge. For those with greater demands and requirements we introduced Pro accounts in 2008. More sites, more storage, more features.
More than 60% of our total traffic come from free sites, vast majority of our users have free accounts. Although most of the top-active users pay for a premium account, all of them started with free ones, gradually discovering that it is worth to pay for it.
Free is important. Large part of our business depend on people getting free accounts and starting free sites. And it works pretty well for us — although it is quite expensive to keep a free version available, it definitely pays off in the long term.
The most popular free sites at Wikidot are devoted to gaming. Look at great sites like AQWWiki, Frets on Fire, Angels Online. There are dozens of great free sites used by gamers on a daily basis, and we are happy to provide resources they need.
This is where I am shocked seeing reputable and large services like Ning or Vox shutting their free services down. Deadpool at Techcrunch.com is full of failed projects that either started with a very poor business model or wanted to give away things they could not afford. Or simply did not meet the expectations of founders or investors.
This is so not our case. Even better: we are making free sites more attractive. Earlier this year we made custom domain mapping free1. Now we are making another step.
Many people complain that although 300 MB for file storage is fine, the current limit of 5 MB per file is too small to upload music, high-quality photos or even PDFs. We have decided to increase this limit to 25 MB.
If you have ideas how to make free sites even more awesome, please share!