E31 – Why Financial Knowledge is So Important!
Get THE BEST page builder > https://keeganlanier.com/getdivi
What’s up everybody, its Keegan back here with another episode of the side hustle full time web designer podcast here on YouTube as well, if you’re watching, enjoy, you get the video, you get to see my face. If you’re watching on YouTube, you see him behind me, there is a mess in my place. And that’s because I’m moving about buying a house. So we’re in the process be closing in just a week or two. So life is a little bit in chaos. So not only do I have a full time job and the side hustle and have been traveling a lot. I’m moving to buy a house. So there’s a whole lot going on in life right now. And it wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s actually pretty fun.
But today in this episode, I want to talk about finances because obviously I’m going through this whole house purchasing process and finances have become a really, it’s become top of mind, right? It’s at the very front of everything I’m doing at the moment. Do I have enough money? What’s the downpayment gonna look like? Where am I pulling this money from? Do I have savings here? What am I doing? Like? All the things right? So finances are really important. And it got me thinking a little bit more about the business, about the business of my side hustle, and how that is structured, and more importantly, how I’m managing those expenses.
So I wanted to run through a couple of things specifically in hosting that I’m doing to save a crap ton of money. So those of you have been around if you listen to the podcast for a while you know that I love Flywheel I have low flywheel for a very long time. There are some changes that are happening. And I’ve mentioned it a couple times here as well. The flywheel I was hosting or rather not hosting 50 sites, but I had a plan that could handle up to 50 websites, right. And you pay the way the way flywheel works is that you buy them in groups of websites.
So you can purchase an individual, you could purchase purchase in bulk if you go to the agency plan. And I think they go up to 30. And then you continue to add in in bulk as that goes up. So I’ve gotten up to 50 websites, and I was paying $350 per month. So I’m pulling out my old calculator right now, if you do the math 350 divided by 50 at $7 per website. Not that bad, right? Not that bad.
That’s if you’re filling that entire server up, right. So if you get to 50, then you’ve maximized it to $7. But as you build up, you’re going to start high on the cost per website, if you only have 20 websites on that $350 plan means you’re paying $17.50 per website, and then each site you add on, you decrease the cost per website. I don’t really like that model. It’s not the best, most efficient way to do things. And I started researching options and started looking for ways to make it so that that fixed or that amount per website is more fixed. And the method I found isn’t necessarily that way. But it does give a much better entry level price per website.
So what I’ve done, again mentioned keep in mind $350 per month for hosting. That’s like all I mean, that’s a ton of money per year, we’re talking $4,200 per year, that adds up, right? That’s a big part of expenses. And if you’re wanting to, you know you’re wanting to grow and scale your business, that’s the first place you can get lean, let’s say you make you do $75,000 In top line revenue per year. And we said $350 per month is 4200 per year and we do 75,000 In top line revenue. That means over 5% over five and a half percent of your expenses, right? Our just our five and a half percent cost on just hosting. That’s a lot of money that adds up.
So what I’ve found is spin up WP and I’ve gotten Digital Ocean servers running inside of Spin Up WP I’ve connected the two which is incredibly simple. I’ve got those two linked. I’ve got three servers running right now. Two of them are production servers, and one of them’s a staging server. And currently, all of my websites are on that and there it’s $60 per month and then I pay an extra $10 per month for email delivery which is really inexpensive. And I do that through postmark which I love Doing it’s insanely fast and really easy to set up.
So it got me, you know, really into this mindset of Where else can I save, and I use Basecamp. And Basecamp is not cheap a pay for the year, it’s $1,000 per year. And I like Basecamp. And they’re adding a lot. They’ve been doing a lot of development to it. But what it isn’t, is an all in one business solution, right. There’s no invoicing, it’s really just project management. And it’s really, really expensive. For project management.
I’m not a big agency, I don’t necessarily need everything that Basecamp offers, like, I just don’t write, I don’t, I don’t need it. So someone brought this to my attention. And I found a great platform on App Sumo. They’re not there currently. But it’s still a really affordable thing. And it’s called Suite Dash. And Suite Dash gives you the ability to build, you know, like PDF style presentations or proposals, really, really cool. proposals that are customizable with your, your clients information. So any dynamic content you have specific to the to your customer, your client, can be just auto populated into these into these proposals.
So for web design, we do a lot of things very repetitive. And this program will allow me to do really, really great stuff, take 17 hats, and most of Basecamp and kind of consolidate that down into one platform. And I may use a different tool when it comes to like project management. But it’s not going to be anything as fancy as, as what Basecamp has, because I really just don’t need it, I can use a free option. Like I could use a Trello board to do my content creation calendar, or Asana or even notion and do those kinds of things. And it’d be completely easy, and very easy, very easy to maintain a very easy to grow.
So I’m just going through this process, really, and I wanted to share my thoughts, I really didn’t outline a whole lot of what I wanted to talk about. But I do just like to keep these conversations in these podcasts extremely, extremely raw, of thinking about finances is top of mind. And I wanted to share those things that are staying really at the forefront of what I’m thinking about the things that are costing me a ton of money in the business. So whenever you’re planning your business, and you’re planning your systems be very, very thoughtful and strategic about what you need.
And really, as a web designer, you don’t need to get attracted by the nice, new flashy, popular platform. That’s what happened with Basecamp. I was attracted to it because there are other people out there who I know and respect we use Basecamp and Basecamp is fantastic. But it’s totally not something that I need. It’s a great nice to have thing, but it isn’t a necessary necessity.
Same thing with flywheel. I was attracted to flywheel because of its simplicity, which coming from like, I used a tu and SiteGround and a few others. And those are all really complicated because they use cPanel. And it was just complicated. So I was looking for something very easy. And I came across flywheel, fell in love with the culture fell in love with the support, fell in love with the platform and the user interface and use them for a very, very, very long time. And it served me well. But scaling got really expensive.
And so I was starting to look for another option that was equally as easy as flywheel, but cost less and gave more flexibility, while not being overly complicated. And that’s where it’s been WP came in to be able to connect with Digital Ocean servers, spin them up in just a matter of seconds, decide what resources you want, be able to go into digital oceans back in and increase the resources. If you need to put more websites on your server or you need resources for the websites on that server. It’s really easy.
And it comes in at a fraction of the cost, right. So to be able to put 50 websites on fly will service at $350 a month, or to go and take, you know 50 websites at $60 a month where it’s less than $1 per website per month as kind of a no brainer, right? So if I take the $60 per month, and multiply that out over the year, it’s $720. So we were $420. I mean $4,200 with Flywheel minus $720 would spin up that’s an extra $3,480 in my pocket every year just in the difference offering the same thing that was offered before and just changing the way it’s set up.
So rather than by will do in the backups every night and fly will host in the servers. I’ve got spin up WP as my dashboard with all the all the websites running through digital ocean servers, and then all my backups are being done through managed WP. That makes it insanely easy. See, and I’m probably going to add a little bit of cost and do droplet, it’s what they call a servers inside of Digital Ocean caught may do droplet backups, so that I can verify those servers are backed up as well. I actually am going to do that. And that’ll add a little bit of cost, but it won’t be a ton. So if every website will do the math again, right, if every website instead of costing me 80 cents cost $1.50. And I’ve got 50 websites, that’s $75 per month, right?
$75 per month times 12 comes out to if I can do the math here $75 times 12 is $900 per year. So 4200 on flywheel minus 900, with this new setup is going to be over $3,000. So $3,300 coming back to me in just gains right profit that was being aided by something else. And I want to bring all this together.
And the reason I even talk about all this and reason I wanted to get in front of you here on the camera, and drop this for you is that if you’re not looking at your business, if you’re not really looking at your business, and seeing places that you’re that you’re too bloated, you need to get lean, and you’re not looking at ways to reduce some of those costs while still keeping a level of service, you’re doing yourself a massive disservice you’re leaving money on the table, that you can be taken as profit or using it to reinvest in your business to grow. And to get more resources to get more products, more tools, more whatever, build your team, all of those things.
That’s where a not analyzing your business, checking it out, seeing where you can get better is such an important thing that you should do periodically, every six months to a year, you should be looking at these things.
Now, I do say this, and I want to give you a big ol word of warning. Don’t chase the new shiny system, right? You need to really do your due diligence and make sure that it’s a smart call, make sure it’s going to benefit your business. And if you do that, be very strategic in how you move and do your research into what it’s going to take which hurdles you’re going to run into which obstacles you’re gonna have to jump over and what benefits are going to come from it, make that decision.
But do your research. Don’t just blindly jump into that, and hope for the best. Because a lot of times you’re going to end up with a ton of headache. But if done right, this can be a great, great way to increase your profit without changing a thing.
So that’s what I got. That’s what’s on my head. That’s what I wanted to put out for you this week. As always, I appreciate you being here. Thank you for listening. I hope that you’re moving step by step one foot in front of the other, getting you closer to becoming that full time web designer because that’s what I’m doing every single day learning getting stronger, getting better sharing that journey with you.
So if you have any questions you need something for me if there’s anything I can help you with reach out, go to keeganlanier.com Connect with me, and I’ll see you in the next episode. Thanks for listening to the side hustle to full time web designer podcast. Don’t forget to subscribe and leave us a five star review on Apple podcasts. Also, visit Keegan lanier.com to stay in touch.