Our 3,000th Post & Future Plans

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This is our 3,000 post, of which 2,800 were actual flight deals. As we mark this milestone, here is what you can expect from us in the near future:

Memorial Day Fireworks. Photo: _e.t, used under Creative Commons License (By 2.0)

Memorial Day Fireworks. Photo: _e.t, used under Creative Commons License (By 2.0)

Enhanced Site Performance

We had a bad run of site reliability this month. Part of that is attributed to the growth of the site and a significant technical challenge with our hosting vendor last week. We have grown about 3,000% since we first launched in August 2011. To support this growing traffic level, we will do more from an infrastructure standpoint to ensure we have adequate capacity. As part of the process, we have implemented a better network monitoring system with faster notification to our team when the site is down. We will also significantly upgrade our hosting plan.

Recently, Google announced they are shutting down Reader. The whole RSS ecosystem is a challenge. We currently use Feedburner, another Google service, to provide RSS and daily email delivery. With the imminent shutdown of Google Reader, we do not anticipate Feedburner to survive. We are currently researching alternatives to provide RSS and e-mail delivery services.

Expanded Coverage

We are still working on providing coverage to additional cities but progress has been slow. From an editorial standpoint, we have always maintained a 6 cents-per-mile criteria but other factors affect our decision to post — deal density and diversity. Deal density is important because who wants only 1 or 2 deals a month? Being diverse faces similar challenges; we don’t want to constantly provide deals to the same city pairs. Cities that we currently do not provide coverage for face all three challenges – lack of deal flow at 6 cents-per-mile or less nor any real deal density or diversity.

But we believe we have a solution that will provide some level of deal flow while still maintaining our 6 cents-per-mile criteria. We are way behind schedule on this aspect of the project but we hope to have it out the door in the 2nd quarter of 2013.  Stay tuned!

Expanded Travel Coverage

We have always been a deal first site but we will ramp up posts related to travel. From an editorial standpoint, they are in line with the articles that we have posted earlier in the month — articles on saving with international data roaming and visiting Shanghai and Beijing without a visa for up to 72 hours.

How?

In order to do the above, we will need to monetize the site because costs are becoming more than just beer money. Since our launch in August 2011, we’ve had minimal monetization elements on our site. We’ve had Google adSense for a short amount of time and occasionally, we throw a TopCashBack link into our deals. But we haven’t had a real monetization plan for the site. To provide better uptime, deals, and content, we will need to bring:

  • Display ads
  • Affiliate booking links for airfare / hotels
  • Limited credit cards affiliate links (and we do mean very limited)
  • What started as a joke on Twitter might become a reality – The Flight Deal Logo T-Shirts! Our creative team is on it!

The monetization elements will roll out slowly in the 2nd quarter.

We want to thank you all for your support. We wouldn’t be here without everyone’s kindness and generosity in spreading our deals. Feel free to leave us any feedback in regards to our upcoming site plans.

The Flight Deal Team (M, J, J, E, W, K, L, R, J, J, R, and V)

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The Flight Deal does not sell travel products or services. We provide you with information about third-party travel suppliers’ offers, and link you to their sites. The information posted by The Flight Deal is valid at the time of publication. However, we have no control over the suppliers, and we therefore do not warrant or guarantee that their offers will not change or become unavailable. Nor are we responsible for their products, services or site content. Please see their sites for their most up-to-date offer information and all applicable terms and conditions.

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9 Responses to "Our 3,000th Post & Future Plans"

  1. Panicstreak says:

    You guys are awesome. Keep up the great work.

  2. Loki says:

    You guys rock and am so glad you exist – just the pertinent info and the price and I’m good to go! Thanks so much!

  3. Marina Dee says:

    I love your site! I hope you guys continue to find to stay up and running! Without you I would never find any decent deals on my own.

  4. Louis says:

    Hi,
    Thanks for all the hard work! I can honestly say that I look forward to getting email from you (although I’ve yet to jump on a flight as a result) and have happily contributed to growing your list a bit. Keep up the good work, if I do ever book a deal I’ll gladly use your link.

    Louis

  5. Grant says:

    I have a few thoughts. I think you should post a top 10 travel deals that you shared as a post. What about having a donation button? I would definitely donate $10 per deal that I score.

  6. Michael says:

    I travel a lot….I would be happy to pay say a $50.00 yearly subscription if I could email you a schedule and have you suggest hot deals or some such.
    I have saved based on your info and I read it daily.
    I like Grants suggestion and would also make a donation for every trip I actually bought and saved on.
    Just note that once you go commercial, now you gotta serve the customer which means mobile versions and apps and so on.
    Keep up the good work

  7. Fishing4Deals says:

    Thank you for the service that you provide to your readers. We are all on the lookout for a good deal!

  8. Sean says:

    You guys do an amazing job. When friends and family ask how to find deals, this is the first site I refer them to. Easy to understand, and you don’t get lost in it like one could on FT. Keep up the good work!

  9. mm says:

    I just found your site, and wow such a great site full of info, thanks!
    just a suggestion so that you can keep up the good work of this site, you can offer award booking services, I would definitely use you guys!

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