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Mailbag: Chocolate Cake is a Need

Multisite, revenue sharing, categories as subdomains, and more in this week’s mailbag!

Adrian in Florida has a long one! I’m going to break it up.

I watched your presentation about “don’t use WP MU” have decided I shouldn’t use it but wanted to ask your advice on some other things. First I want to start by pointing out re the presentation:

• I noticed that for the Wordpress.com network sites I noticed the WP toolbar does show on the sites giving them away as network sites except for one, Gigaom (perhaps there is a way to remove it?)

• For some of us chocolate cake is a need, not a want.

No, the cake is a want. And I use that example for a reason. We can joke all we want about how we need the cake, but fact is this: We need food. We want treats. If we can be clear in our hearts about needs versus wants, webdev is much simpler. I don’t need coffee. I like it. I can live without it. I don’t want to and choose not to. I can blog without WordPress. I don’t want to. I choose not to. It’s very important to be clear on needs and wants and choices in life in general.

As for turning off the .com toolbar on Gigaom, I noticed when I visit there’s a blip where it shows the space for the toolbar and then it’s gone. So that suggests it’s CSS fixing itself. But the answer is “They’re a VIP customer and probably paid out the nose for that.”

1. I just want to learn one theme/framework to make websites with and not change. I had already paid for Elegant Themes to get Divi which is supposed to be customizable and seems to have good video tutorials, before I saw your recommendation for Studiopress. I don’t know how to tell if I should scrap Divi and pay up again for Studiopress. Would you?

I like Studiopress a great deal. It’s secure, it’s stable, it’s updated responsibly and reasonable, and Andrea Rennick is one of my BFFs. Divi I dislike because of how they handle sessions. But whichever you use is up to you. If you want a free theme to start with, I’d pick up Theme Hybrid. Justin’s code is second to none.

2. I want to be able to make each page in my Wordpress site show up under its own subdomain. I’ve tried a few plugs like “page links to” which doesn’t work. I saw that there are some plugins that do this for categories. Do you know a plugin that enable each page resolve to a subdomain otherwise do you recommend one of the category plugins over another?

This stems from his URL design which is page.example.com and … I just wouldn’t. It’s a waste of time and effort and locks you into a categorization that will be insane to unroll later.

Now as a category that’s less weird and you can try one of these plugins:

  • https://wordpress.org/plugins/subdomains/
  • https://wordpress.org/plugins/main-category-as-subdomain/
  • https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-subdomains-revisited/

I still wouldn’t use Multisite unless you really enjoy logging into a separate site for each post and not having an easy way to cross reference.

3. Is there a plugin out there that allows different people to receive ad revenue for their posts? We have two different writers for one website, each should get ad revenue related to each’s own posts on the same website.

This is actually why I bothered to answer. This is a cool question and I had no idea at all when I first read it.

Turns out, yes you totally can have separate ads per author. If you’re using Google AdSense (you didn’t say), then try Multi Author Adense, which looks like you could set the code per author. There’s also Revenue Share which may be a little simpler.

Good luck!