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Running costs for self hosted Sharetribe

I have one instance of Sharetribe’s open source platform self hosted, and I thought I’d share the costs around that.

This is hosted on Heroku. Why? It’s not the cheapest option, but it is the easiest option to get up and running with regard to developer time. It also is what runs, so there’s less possibility of future incompatibilities. But I understand if you want to do all your own devops stuff (scaling, upgrading the server, backing up the db, etc) to save some bucks.

Anyway, on production, you’ll want to run a 2X dyno for the web dyno, and a 1X dyno for the css_compile and worker dynos. I run 1 2X dyno for the web, and a 1x dyno for the worker tasks. That means about $75/month, plus maybe $5/month for heroku run bash and css compiles. You can obviously scale up the web dynos as you need to.

And here are the addons I’ve found useful:

  • Cleardb for mysql, ‘drift’ level (make sure to be careful about your total db connections–each passenger process uses 5 and ‘drift’ only has 30. $49.99
  • flying sphinx for searches, ‘wooden’, $12. We have few enough listings that I’m not worried about deltas yet. $12
  • memcachier for caching. Been able to stay at the developer level for now, which is free.
  • new relic for monitoring and performance reporting. Been able to stay at the ‘wayne’ level for now, which is free.
  • papertrail for logfile review and alerting. Very valuable! Haven’t needed more than 2 days of logs, so am at the ‘choklad’ level, free.
  • heroku scheduler, which is essentially cron. Free.
  • sendgrid for emails, which lets us send 12k emails for free.
  • SSL addon, which lets us serve up the app under SSL with a custom domain name. $20

So, add these all up and you are looking at a running cost of $75+$5+$50+$12+$20 == $162 for a base level heroku install of Sharetribe (plus the SSL certificate, which is another $20, but is a yearly expense). It’s worth remembering that these will increase as you have more traffic and success.

Note, this is for production only. You probably want a staging server. I’ve been able to get by with free dynos for staging, though if you want to support/test full text searches or have a DB with more than 5MB of data in it, you’ll need to pay *something* for staging.

13 thoughts on “Running costs for self hosted Sharetribe

  1. Hans says:

    this is very useful, thanks, since it is a key question for many teams. To be clear, you are saying $162 per month, yes? Thanks again.

  2. moore says:

    Yes, that is a monthly cost. Of course, I think you could get by with less money if you were willing to host on a system like EC2. Heroku is just the recommended choice.

    Also, staging is a separate environment that is internal and lets any changes you are making be reviewed and tested before being shown to the public. (I saw you asked about that in your tweet.)

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thank you SOOOOO much for that, you saved us soooo much time and effort and $$$$ on our small budget that we have. Thanks 😀

  4. moore says:

    Happy to help.

  5. Bakhty says:

    Don’t you think it would be better to indicate $20 as an annual expense while the rest are monthly?

  6. moore says:

    Absolutely. Will update.

  7. Simone says:

    Thanks for the post. Would you share a number about how many users/products/transactions/somethingelse you have per day? It is just to understand. I am not an expert. I just own a small website of a completely different topic and I pay 10$/month. So I would like to understand if your price is what you pay if you have 1M users/month or 1k users/month.


  8. moore says:

    This is the bare minimum and is because you are deploying a rails app to heroku. I don’t know what kind of support other hosting providers have for rails apps, but that may be a cheaper way to go. I don’t have any numbers for how many users this configuration will support, sorry.

  9. Fabiane Santos de Souza says:

    Hi, there, thanks for the article. Can You share the traffic and number of transactions your Sharetribe installation do per month? I`m afraid to go live next week because we are experiencing some trouble now with 8 people connected at same time inserting products.

  10. moore says:

    We ended up not using sharetribe’s transaction functionality. Last I checked it was running on 3 $50/month heroku dynos. I don’t remember the traffic, but we had a lot more than 8 users.

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  12. Charles says:

    Thanks for sharing this. A couple of questions that I would appreciate if you can reply to:

    How long did it take you to set up everything? From having nothing set up to having your platform running and live?
    Did you make modifications to the open source version to fit your business?

    If yes, how long did it take you to change the open source version to fit your business?

    Did you develop your own frontend to use with Sharetribe’s open source?


    Thank you very much.

  13. moore says:

    Setup was maybe 20 hours (it was a few years ago).

    Definitely made modifications (about two months of 50ish hours weeks). However this was in 2016. So I don’t know what kind of mods would be needed now.

    We evolved the front end over time. However, we kept it in the rails view tech (so no modern JS front end).

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