With a baby due any day now, I’ve been paying close attention to my annual subscriptions to things like Canva, Netflix, and of course, Jetpack. If you don’t know, Jetpack is a plugin that adds a bunch of extra features to your WordPress blog. Those features used to be contained in a single subscription, but now they’re available a la carte. With the goal of saving some money in mind, I started to wonder, What’s the minimum Jetpack plan required to be included in WordPress Reader?
Hopefully, it doesn’t come as a surprise that without a Jetpack subscription, your blog posts aren’t included in WordPress Reader. That seems strange, but of all the Jetpack features I care about, that would be the most important to me. Aside from spamming Twitter with my blog posts, I don’t know how else to put them in front of people other than through organic Google searches.
There are other features like anti-spam, site search, and security scanning, but I feel like those are for bigger sites with a lot more traffic than my little blog gets. None of the features explicitly say inclusion in WordPress Reader, so I did what any reasonable person would do, I asked them.
I shot a note to Jetpack Support
I see that the Jetpack plans have changed since I last renewed. Is there a bare minimum subscription that is required so that blog posts show up in the WordPress reader? Or is just having the Jetpack plugin (with no plan) sufficient to be included?
Having never interacted with Jetpack Support, I fully expected a form response that didn’t answer my question in the slightest. Instead, I got a note back from Kellie, a Happiness Engineer at Automattic.
For your site to appear in any search results for posts or tags on the WordPress.com Reader, your site will need to have a paid Jetpack plan which includes backups. That being the case, the minimum subscription required in our current plan offerings would be one of our Jetpack Backup upgrades: https://jetpack.com/upgrade/backup/
They included a bunch of other helpful info and links, but I was really just happy to get a straight answer.
So there you go: the minimum subscription required in the current plan offerings would be one of the Jetpack Backup upgrades.
Compared to the old plans, the Jetpack Backup upgrade is $20 more per year–not exactly what I was looking for. I could keep renewing at the old rate, but the point of the exercise was to save money.
Since Linode already provides daily VM snapshots, I don’t really need most of the Jetpack Backup features. Couple that with low traffic, and the CDN features aren’t really necessary either. There’s enough doubt there to make me want to let the plan expire and see what that does to my traffic.
Will my site get noticeably slower?
Will spam accounts stop liking my marketing posts?
Will my comments be overrun with garbage?!
Who knows what the future will bring, but in a world where everything is a subscription, something’s got to give. Sometimes, I feel like I start subscriptions without ever truly considering their value. Does inclusion in WordPress Reader help me sell books? Because that’s the point of all this, right? Get traffic, advertise your books, convert those views into clicks, into sales, into money, into pizza rolls, into happiness?
Yes. The answer is yes.
Lastly, as someone who works in the customer service / success / satisfaction field, Jetpack Support is awesome. Now, I’ve only ever contacted them once, but I was impressed by their entire demeanor and follow-up. I’m always on the lookout for customer service styles to emulate with my team, and Jetpack Support is now on that list alongside You Need a Budget and Zappos.