The last 4 months were quite impressive. Since our last transparency report TranslatePress grew from 4500$/month in August to over 8500$/month at the end of November.
Then, in the last month of 2018, TranslatePress sales passed the 10000$ monthly recurring revenue mark.
This is HUGE for us and a solid confirmation that our efforts are focused in the right direction.
Besides this, the free version active installs grew to 30K.
Below we’re going to go into what happened in the last 4 months, the things we focused on as well as a detailed revenue breakdown. Welcome to Transparency Report #2.
Development, Better Processes, and Speed Improvements
Development wise the last period was focused on two main things: (more) speed improvements as well as getting TranslatePress to work for a lot of edge cases.
Speed is critical, so we’re constantly looking to make TranslatePress as fast as possible. To achieve this we are caching operations that are intensive.
Less load on your multilingual site means more traffic (due to better SEO) and an increase in your conversion rate.
Apart from this, new features were put on hold in order to fix edge case bugs, making sure TranslatePress works out of the box for everyone.
For this, when fixing a certain bug we wanted to make sure we don’t create a new one (this actually happened a few times in the past months).
So Madalin started to write specific unit tests that make sure each piece of code we write solves more problems than it creates. I’m exaggerating a bit here, but you get the point.
Also, we took steps to make sure the plugin never fails silently, so we can quickly identify the problem, and spend less time on debugging and more on coming up with a solution for it.
Since we’re offering 100% WooCommerce compatibility – the ability to translate all strings (even from AJAX), product slugs, detecting and translating gettext strings – this is a big deal for us.
WordPress 5.0 is out. What this means for TranslatePress
WordPress 5.0 came out at the end of November and with it, the new block-based editor known as Gutenberg.
Gutenberg introduces a whole new approach to the way content is created. The entire editing experience has been rebuilt for media-rich pages and posts. Gutenberg blocks are a great visual tool for building and styling different types of content, without having to write a single line of code.
So, what does this mean for TranslatePress?
TranslatePress continues to work out of the box and is 100% Gutenberg compatible.
The reason for that is that TranslatePress deals with the content of your website on the front-end, after it has been generated as HTML. So it doesn’t matter what type of editor you use for creating the content.
Make sure to check out this tutorial on how to translate Gutenberg blocks.
Sponsoring our second WordCamp
After last year’s experience sponsoring our first WordCamp, we knew we had to do it again.
This year was a bit different, most people already knew about TranslatePress and we even met some of our paying users face to face. Some of them wanted to hear about the things that we worked on in the past 12 months. Others provided feedback.
Most of the ones who haven’t heard about TranslatePress before were quite impressed after showing them the demo.
I also got asked if sponsoring a WordCamp is a good investment. If your short-term goal is to bring in new business that’s a multiplier of your sponsorship package, you may be disappointed.
Sponsoring a WordCamp is a great way to give back to the WordPress community and develop relationships. Some of these relationships, if properly nurtured, might take your business to the next level. If you look at it this way, it’s a no brainier.
I’m constantly amazed by the openness to help and share things among the WordPress community.
That being said this was a great team-building experience for us, a tradition I would like to keep in 2019 as well.
Revenue breakdown (details)
This is a breakdown of the sales that came in last month (December) :
Normally, December is not a great month in terms of sales. However it was our best month to date, and it brought in 9130€ (that’s around 10400$).
Now let’s look at the past 4 months in terms of revenue, since our last report.
As you notice September and October were quite steady, around 5000-5500$, then the sales grew to 8500$ in November and passed 10K in December.
While I’m fully aware these monthly sales may have fluctuations, the overall trend is healthy. And it will be interesting to see what the next 4 months will look like since we’ll also have the automatic renewals coming in beginning this year.
What didn’t go as planned
As mentioned before, improving our processes, creating unit tests and our speed obsession took a lot of development time.
This meant some of our most requested features were put on hold. We didn’t get to ship our new Media Translation add-on, even though we had a working prototype at the end of October.
However frustrating this is, these steps were necessary and we learned from them.
[UPDATE] Image translation is now part of TranslatePress core. Check it out!
Apart from that, we did hit the majority of the goals set in our past report These were:
- Power 30K+ websites before the end of the year ✔
- Get to 7000+$/month revenue by December ✔
- Stick to our development roadmap (here we came a little short)
- Write more, improve our docs, publish more resources ✔
Moving forward, our key focus will be on acceleration in feature development.
Let’s have a look at our goals for the next 4 months:
- Launch Media/Image Translation (this module offers the ability to translate images, links, and any type of media in a very intuitive UI)
- DeepL integration (a very high quality automatic translation service) [Update] Done
- Taxonomy translations
- Publish an email course on building multilingual sites
- Grow our site traffic by 50%
- Write 2-3 useful tutorials each month
- Get to 14000$ MRR
- Power 50K websites
Looking back, 2018 has been a really good year for TranslatePress. The plugin has matured, gained in complexity, while also maintaining its simplicity and ease of use.
All of this wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work of a great team as well as constant feedback from you, TranslatePress users.
Thank you all and here’s to a great 2019!