2019 Year in Review: Growth, Marketing, WordCamps & Upcoming Features!

2019 has been a stimulating and rewarding year for TranslatePress. We saw consistent growth on multiple levels and learned a lot along the way.

Also, there are some important things we’ve been working on, that haven’t been released yet. Each one of them will contribute significantly to the future growth of TranslatePress.

I’d like to share some details about each below. Welcome to the 2019 Year in Review for TranslatePress.

Revenue & User Growth

TranslatePress saw growth in both revenue and user adoption.

The plugin is now used on over 60K active websites, which is more than double than where it was 12 months ago.

An even more impressive growth happened revenue wise from our premium versions.

Our yearly revenue grew by 500% in 2019.

This is not something we take for granted and are extremely grateful for. It’s also a solid indicator that our efforts were put in the right places.

Since TranslatePress is a bootstrapped product, built using the resources of Cozmoslabs, this made it easier for us to focus on what we thought was really important for our users.

I would attribute the majority of this growth to our focus on making TranslatePress the most easy to use WordPress translation plugin on the market.

In 2019, there was a lot of development work aimed towards improving the overall user experience and attaining out of the box compatibility with other tools (plugins, themes etc.).

Besides this, it was the first year when we had a clear marketing strategy in place and stuck with it. More on that later.

We saw more and more people migrate from other translation solutions over to TranslatePress, due to it’s ease of use, speed and out of the box compatibility (especially when it comes to popular tools like WooCommerce or page builders).

Let’s have a look at some of the most important features and improvements added last year to TranslatePress.

New Features and Improvements in TranslatePress

Development wise, a significant amount of work revolved around improving user experience.

Here are the most important things added to TranslatePress last year:

  • Image Translation – the ability to translate images, sliders and other media using the visual translation interface (directly from the front-end). This makes translating images with text integrated in the intuitive front-end translation flow and is a huge increase in the overall translation experience.
  • DeepL integration for automatic translation – we added support for DeepL, which is a powerful machine translation tool backed by artificial intelligence and neural networks.
  • Added support for keyboard shortcuts. This together with highlighting translation boxes with unsaved changes helped speed up the translation process.
  • Translation Memory – suggest similar translated strings from which users can choose when entering a translation
  • Ongoing compatibility with other plugins or themes. This varied from adding a few css tweaks and make sure the translation interface displays beautifully to managing conflicts with other plugins. Our promise is that TranslatePress should work out of the box with every WordPress tool used to build or add functionality to your site. Of course, this is not something we can control 100% every time, but all this compatibility work will benefit the end user and remove friction.
  • Redesigned the Automatic Translation interface – since a significant amount of our users set up automatic translation to speed up the translation process, it made sense to make this simpler. We are however far from being done here and in 2020 we’ll looking to make the process of automatically translating your site friction-less.
  • Speed optimizations – last but not least, we continued to add speed improvements to TranslatePress, making sure your website speed is not sacrificed when going multilingual (check out this comparison). Small page load times is another critical thing that separates us from other translation solutions on the market.

 

Upcoming New Features

Besides the above, there are some highly requested features that have been in the works for some time now and which will be launched soon.

I will list them here since most of their development happened in 2019:

  • Multilingual Search – we’ll add support for multilingual search, the ability to search and display valid results in a certain language.
  • String Translation – imagine having an interface for translating any string added by a theme or a plugin, independently of whether or not it’s displayed in the front-end. Looking to modify or translate WooCommerce emails without messing around with templates? The new String Translation interface from TranslatePress will make this easier than ever. You’ll have filtering options that will make it simple to translate any string coming from a plugin or theme.The same goes for url slug translation. Whether you’re looking to translate all post/page slugs at once, or things like taxonomies & terms, you’ll be able to do this from one place and make sure you don’t miss any.

Both of these features will be released soon.

Marketing and Content

Another key factor behind the growth of TranslatePress in 2019 has been a consistent marketing strategy.

A good product is not enough anymore in an overly crowded WordPress plugin ecosystem. Even a great product can fall short and not get noticed, without the consistent efforts to spread the word and educate.

As developers and engineers at core, marketing has never come naturally to us. It’s more fun to solve a technical challenge behind a new features than to write, focusing on a pain your potential customer is facing and teaching him ways to overcome it. Some of which include using your product, of course. In order to be noticed, this needs to become a habit.

It’s no secret that content marketing done right and consistent leads to results. Our monthly traffic doubled in 2019, mostly due to our content marketing efforts.

We published regularly on our blog, as well as continued to add support pages to our documentation. For example, if you’re using a page builder to build a multilingual site, you can find step by step tutorials for all major page builders ( like Elementor, Beaver Builder, Divi, Visual Composer or Brizy).

To take our content marketing to the next level, we’re actively looking for a marketing manager to oversee and coordinate all the marketing activities behind TranslatePress. If you’re interested, drop us a line.

We’ve also set up an affiliate system since more and more users wanted to recommend TranslatePress. If you found our plugin useful and think it can help others, make sure to sign up and earn up to 30% for each sale.

I also did a couple of interviews (for Kinsta, Themeisle and WPLeaders) as well as podcast appearances, trying to share the leanings of our journey as a WordPress product company.

I always found reading other people stories inspiring and insightful, so this is something I meant to do for quite some time.

WordCamps and the WordPress community

No doubt, one of the best things about WordPress is the community built around it. And WordCamps are probably the easiest way to meet people that are part of this community.

Last year, almost all of our team attended WordCamp Europe in Berlin. It’s the biggest WordPress event on the globe, where you can pretty much meet face to face all the people that you just know of or heard of from the internet. We also wanted to be sponsors, but due to some bad planning this didn’t happen.

However, it was a great event, where I almost lost my voice in the two days of intense networking. It was great to meet old friends, as well as new people some of whom I’ve already exchanged emails with.

For us attending a WordCamp is also a great team building opportunity. Even though we share the same office, it’s incredible what travelling together and spending time outside the “default” work environment can do to the team spirit.

This year we’re going to sponsor multiple WordCamps, WordCamp Europe in Porto being one of them.

Also, it will be our third year sponsoring WordCamp Bucharest, a local WordCamp really close to our hearths.

If you’re planning to attend, make sure to drop by the TranslatePress booth and say hi!

What’s next in 2020?

I’ve already drafted a 2020 roadmap for TranslatePress and it’s exciting, to say the least.

Here are some of the things that will receive our focus this year:

  • Redesign our website – this has been long overdue and I’m quite happy it will happen soon.
  • Improve the value proposition of the plugin – there will be some highly requested features coming to TranslatePress this year, so stay tuned.
  • Grow our team and delegate more – sustaining growth requires extra resources, so we’re already looking to expand our support, development and marketing teams.
  • Attend and sponsor multiple WordCamps – this for us has been a great way to build relationships with users and creators in the WordPress space, get face to face feedback as well as give back to the WordPress community.

2019 has been a rewarding year for TranslatePress. We’re extremely grateful for each one of you, our users, and excited for what’s yet to come. Here’s to a great 2020!

P.S. If you’re new to TranslatePress, it’s the easiest way to turn your WordPress site multilingual. Grab the free version or upgrade to a premium plan (for extended functionality) and start translating your site today.

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