How to encourage players to donate?

Discussion in 'Server & Community Management' started by DotRar, Sep 1, 2018.

  1. Hi, I've had my server open for a few months now, it's hosted on a dedicated server, which means our bills for it our server are relatively high. We average 6 players online at once and have peaked at about 12 iirc. We have a small community established, with many players who come and play every day, and over 120 people in our Discord server, out of the 900 players that have ever joined our server.

    In this whole time, we've only had 1 donation (rest have been from coupon codes from giveaways that we've done to encourage people to join our Discord server and what not). We'd like to getting more people to donate though so that we can stop making a loss each month.

    I should probably mention what the server is about - it's a TNT Wars server, which is a gamemode that was made popular by youtubers such as PrestonPlays and NoahCraftFTW a couple of years ago - I actually owned a TNT Wars server back then but had to shut it down.

    On our store, we sell crystals (ingame currency that you can purchase cannons and a few other things with) and ranks, that are quite frankly P2W to motivate people to actually buy a rank.

    Ingame, we use announcements (every 4 minutes) to encourage donations:

    There's also an item menu in-game that players must use to get their blocks and tools ect. At the bottom of it, we have some items that when hovered over show perk. I had faith in this method since it put the perks right infront of the player's face, however it hasn't helped at all:

    If anyone wants to join the server and actually take a look themselves, the IP is

    Basically, I just want to know if there's anything more I can do to encourage people to donate so that we can start making a profit so we can grow the server more using that money. Cheers.
  2. A lot of people don’t like “pay to win” servers. But in reality, it’s a good marketing strategy. If you’re offering someone in your store that really isn’t beneficial no one is going to buy it. Most users want to show off their rank, items, and more. I’d suggest offering a bit more perks/items with your ranks.
  3. Just be unique with it, many often say "oh you need a good store" but be kind to your players and don't constantly bash them with "HEY COULD YOU DONATE PLEASE". One strategy that I used in the past was getting on an alt account and adding a donation to buycraft so that the message would send through chat and it would catch people's eye.
  4. By providing the best and most quality upfront value as possible. Make them feel like they are apart of something great and worthwhile. Make them feel that not only they should be playing on your server, but their friends and even relatives. They should be excited when they talk about your server!

    If you can build that type of vibe with the content you provide, a quality, professional and engaging staff team and leadership, perks that provide an equal opportunity (not outcome) and isn't that pay-2-win, then I think you can retain a really good player base.

    There's more to it of course, but I think you know that. If you keep your community close and at heart and show that you care, everything else will fall in place. They will donate without you even uttering a word or pushing any sort of promotion. They'll tell their friends and their friend's friends to donate.
    Well, it is a great marketing strategy because you get what you pay for. You pay more and you get more perks. To the level that can make gameplay really unfair for those who just started out. I know servers where newer players get that feeling where they have to donate to feel like they're an actual player. And that's not the community a lot of people really like.

    If you want to build a community that's based on those who pay the most get the most and that spending actual money makes them "better" in the community then I'm not stopping you. However, if you're going to provide a lot more perks for your community, keep in mind the balance and the purpose of each perk you introduce. If it has no purpose, remove it. If it does, keep it. If it's unfair or unbalanced, find alternatives or remove it overall.

    Pay-2-win works. Especially well in 2018. But take a look at Fortnite. Epic Games makes billions of purely cosmetic offers. It's crazy. Skins and emotes that give you zero upper hand in gameplay, but people spend money on it cause it looks cool. Try and incorporate that into your server. As a TNT Wars server/minigame server, I don't think that'll be too difficult.
  5. Yeah I haven't actually said anything to people about donating personally, it's always through the announcements to make it seem less pushy. I might try the alt thing tomorrow, I have quite a few that I could use.

    Thanks, will have a think
  6. I would love to make a server with only cosmetic perks, however I'm 99% sure I wouldn't even have that 1 donator if I did that. When they're ingame, I see players asking "omg how do you have diamond armour", rather than "omg how do you have nether blocks" (I added nether blocks for donators as they have the same blast resistance as stone bricks, just look cool). I am trying to build a community as best as I can, I try to be ingame most of the time, either playing or just talking to people if I'm working on something. We are starting to get build a community who come back daily, and I hope that with that comes donations.
  7. I'm not saying you'll be the next Fornite and you should do all cosmetic perks, but it's actually a good thing knowing that when returning players or new players join your server, they won't have an upper hand simply because they spent $5 or $500 on your server's store. That's what matters. The balance. It'll come down to skill instead of who spends more money with mom's credit card.

    So don't be afraid if you think people won't purchase from your store because of cosmetics. Epic Games made billions because people felt cool showing off the amount of money they spent on VBucks so they can purchase emotes and skins. I'm not saying it'll be the exact same with Minecraft, but it's something to take away from Fortnite and really just build an actual organic community and a place where everyone can have the chance to have fun and play fair. Just don't think to get more players and money you need to subconsciously ensure players must pay to win.
  8. To be honest with you, the perks you have aren't that exciting. I'm on the server right now (alone unfortunately) and all the perks seem mundane. No new mechanics, just better pickaxes or armor. Make abilities like tnt fire that shoots tnt from your fist or something along those lines. Better armor and pickaxe and more health just make me say ehh and carry on. If you do something cool I'll personally donate since I like the concept.
    • Winner Winner x 1
  9. TNT Wars isn't a very P2W gamemode, keep that in mind. Add maybe titles, cosmetics to the store wont drive much, my server has an 80 playerbase and we are only making around 100$ a month from cosmetics yet my server is factions more people buy p2w items :p Best of luck though :)
  10. Yeah that's true, although blast protection armour pretty much prevents death from TNT.

    Didn't think of it that way, and I totally agree - perks need to excite players. I think the first time I ever donated to a server was for VIP on Hypixel and it was because I realllyyyyyy wanted to play one of the VIP classes in TNT wizards. Atm I'm working on adding a temporary "forcefield" that prevents TNT damage for about 30 seconds - 1 minute to allow people time to rebuild their cannons. I'll keep trying to think of more interesting perks too. Thanks a bunch <3
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Iirc pay to win is against the eula, double check and make sure your server is safe.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
  12. Everyone knows this, no one cares about it. You can bypass it anyway.
  13. Yeh but, its a hassle and kinda illegal if mojang want to get their lawyers involved.
  14. Iirc if you want to do p2w you could also use something like glowstone, which is built from the ground up and doesnt require the eula. But its a big switch from spigot even though it supports bukkit plugins.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
  15. There's a script that does it for you and Mojang / Microsoft won't waste money on getting lawyers to sue you, they'd probably have a hard time to do so too.

    Mojang can still block your server from the Minecraft client
    • Agree Agree x 1
  16. Strahan


    Yea, Mojang won't take you to court. The most they'll do is block your server. It would be totally economically infeasible to sue server owners for EULA violations.
    • Winner Winner x 1

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