Starting your Own Website
Besides doing live cam shows, many cam models branch out to other things in order to earn more money. One popular idea is starting your own website. Generally this would be a paysite that your fans can join in order to get access to a large amount of your content. It could include your videos, photosets, live show archives, blog, and maybe even a store to sell tangible goods and custom content. Members would pay monthly to continue accessing your content. Even if you don’t know the first thing about starting your own website, there are companies out there that make it easy for you to get started.
The first one we’ll talk about, and the one that I use for my own website, is ModelCentro. They’ve been around for a few years now and are a great option. They’re basically a CMS (content management system) platform. That means they provide you with all of the tools that are necessary to starting your own adult paysite. This includes premade forms that easily allow you to upload all of your content, add titles, descriptions, keywords, cover pictures, previews, watermarks, etc. They also provide you with on-site software to do live cam shows for your members. These shows can be free to all members or you can have certain members pay for a show with you. They have a built-in blog that you can use, calendar, about me page, and more! They really are the complete package in my opinion. And even though they already have a decent amount of features, they’re always working to add more. They really listen to the models and prioritize their new features based off of model input. An on-site storefront is currently in the works and should be released soon.
A downfall to using a site like ModelCentro, is that they take a percentage of everything that you make. You keep 67.5% when you use them. They take a percentage out for billing and a percentage out for themselves for providing all of the services that they do. Some models prefer to keep more money, which is fine if you know a bit more about web design and have the time to do everything yourself. You might choose to make a site with WordPress. WordPress is more complicated and time consuming to get to know than ModelCentro. Plug-ins and scripts that fit your needs all need to be found and installed by you. WordPress does provide a list of premade plug-ins, it’s just a matter of finding the right ones and getting them configured to your liking.
As far as making it so your fans have to pay to access your WordPress site, you have several different options. You could always use an adult-friendly payment processor such as CCBill. They provide you with fully functional buttons and forms that allow your fans to input their credit card information, have it processed through CCBill, and then provide access to your members-only content once they’re cleared. Another option would be for you to completely create the join page of your website yourself to include other ways of payment such as Amazon gift cards, GiftRocket, tips on a cam site, etc. In my opinion though, this complicates things. If they join through any of those methods, you’ll have to manually create their member account after you get paid. If you aren’t near a computer as soon as you get the notification that someone paid, that member will have to wait until you’re free before accessing your site. That can be frustrating.
If you 100% want to do your site from scratch, you’ll need to get hosting and a domain name. Unless you’re really experienced in web/graphic design or want to pay a company to create the site for you, I don’t suggest even trying this. Paying a company outright to create a site for you can be very expensive. And you’ll need to find a company that’ll work with adult content. And creating a site yourself, even if you have some experience, is incredibly time consuming.
One last thing… make sure you buy Whois privacy for your domain! It’ll mask your true identity. Without it, anyone can look up the name of the person who bought the domain name, along with other personal information. As a cam model, protecting your true identity is very important. So be sure to do this immediately after purchasing your name. It isn’t very expensive, and it’s most definitely a necessity.