This time it’s here. 2021 has come to an end. I hope you had a great time with your loved ones over the holidays.
Now we can roll up our sleeves and get to 2022.
Well, not so fast. Let’s take some time to look back at the evolution of WPMarmite over the past 12 months. Here’s our 2021 year in review.
We can’t say it enough: taking stock of the progress of your projects is crucial.
Otherwise, you risk not really knowing where you are or where you are going. In short, you could end up like a headless duck.
For the last 2 years, I’ve been in the habit of shooting a video review (in French, my native language 😉 ) on my personal YouTube channel, but in the end, combining a global view and a post focused on WPMarmite seems to me to be a good approach.
We’ll see if it evolves again the next few years. 😅
Anyway, here goes the post. Let me know what you think in the comments.
The 2021 year in review for WPMarmite
So what’s new for WPMarmite in 2021? Well, there’s a lot to talk about.
In order to present our 2021 year in review to you in the best possible way, we will proceed step by step.
If you know (and appreciate) WPMarmite, it is certainly thanks to its free content.
First of all, there are the blog posts. In 2021, we published and updated 69 posts (out of a total of 263) in French and 75 posts (out of a total of 117) in English.
We have also done some cleaning up to remove old posts that are no longer relevant.
There are still a lot of posts to update because everything evolves very quickly. The editorial team is doing its best to offer you the most updated posts possible.
To share with you our way of working, and to clarify our use of affiliation, we have published our publishing policy.
The goal is to provide quality resources to get started with WordPress.
On the video side, the growth in the number of subscribers to the WPMarmite YouTube channel (in French) has almost halved.
The channel’s flagship video (928K views) was out of date, so we released a new version, but it’s struggling to gain traction at the moment (it still has 13K views).
I’m also having a hard time releasing new videos on a regular basis.
Newsletters are also an integral part of the free content offered by WPMarmite.
If you’re a subscriber, you know that we go out of our way to try to entertain you while teaching you serious stuff.
Join the WPMarmite subscribers
Get the last WPMarmite posts (and also exclusive resources).
It’s something we feel very strongly about.
In terms of numbers, around 35% of subscribers open our emails.
The last type of free content is social media posts.
These have seen a nice growth at the end of the year. This shows that you appreciate following us outside our usual channel (blog).
And between us, we understand that you can’t always take the time to read 3,000 words post! (I reassure you, this one is only 1,800 words long 😀 ).
Two years ago, we launched the English version of WPMarmite to help even more people get the best out of WordPress.
To date, 115 posts are available in the language of Shakespeare. We’re still translating them, but there are many! (We also need to update them to provide quality content.)
Despite all these efforts, we are still not receiving a lot of English-speaking traffic from Google (we only passed 10K visitors in January 2021).
WPMarmite is starting to position itself on some international keywords but the competition is tough.
We need to have more content to “weigh” more but also more backlinks from foreign websites (and in particular from websites of the WordPress community).
To do so, we decided to contribute to the community in order to get noticed with the FSE study.
The goal was to see if WordPress theme shops were preparing for the arrival of Full Site Editing in WordPress 5.9.
Several medias and WordPress newsletters have relayed it to the community, which has generated some nice mentions. 🙂
In any case, English-speaking readers are very happy with what WPMarmite offers. We need to work harder (and smarter) to get our name out to the WordPress community.
In 2021, the main goal was to release the second version of our SEO training (in French).
Unfortunately, this project was partially delayed due to research and the integration of our new recruits. We were only able to initiate this update at the end of the year.
For the moment, only the scripts of about 15 videos are ready. I would like to go faster but quality must come first!
Regarding the other courses, the Elementor training (in French) has been updated to reflect the evolutions of the famous page builder. Aurore, our content manager, saved me a ton of time on this.
Elementor webinars have also been launched. The idea is to provide feedback during live webinars on websites designed by the students of the course (the recordings are of course made available afterwards).
To date, 4 webinars are available, 8 hours of content. I would like to record one more to reach 10 hours of case studies.
On the other hand, we’ve launched trainings to help aspiring freelancers get started.
And finally, in December we did a test with a subscription offer to some people to access all of our trainings.
If it works well, we will offer this again in the future. But for now, nothing is planned.
The WPMarmite network
The blog’s 10th anniversary year was also an opportunity to expand the WPMarmite network with a new site: BeautifulPress.
The goal is to reach a slightly different audience, website builders looking for inspiration, to show them what can be done with WordPress. I have detailed the other goals of BeautifulPress in this post if you are interested.
More than 1000 websites are available at the moment. Now we have to rank on multiple keywords and create a community to make WPMarmite’s little brother take off.
I have other ideas for websites to expand WPMarmite’s network but first things first. Even though I’m itching to launch these new projects, we have to take it slow because each project requires time and a financial investment that we have to control (our resources are not unlimited).
In 2021, we also released the free Modern CTT plugin to offer Click to Tweet blocks to promote content on Twitter.
We can’t say it’s a success in terms of downloads but it’s very useful for us!
Evolution of the team
In 2020, WPMarmite made its first recruitment (Cynthia) to support its international deployment. In 2021, the goal was to strengthen the team on the French side to go to the next level.
Aurore joined us in April and I am delighted. She manages the editorial calendar, writes posts and assists me in updating the training courses. All this in a good mood, what more could you ask for?
We tried to go further with a community manager position in March and a communication manager in November, but unfortunately I had to break their trial periods.
Finding people with the right skills and who fit the culture of WPMarmite is not an easy thing. But hey, that’s life.
We’ll see what happens in 2022 but for now, we’ll work with a freelancer to manage our social media.
In any case, our current team, composed of permanent and freelance people, works well. It’s really nice to work in this atmosphere.
What are the goals for WPMarmite in 2022?
After this 2021 year in review, let’s focus on the next 12 months by setting some goals.
I’m not going to make too many plans but here is what I have in mind for 2022:
- Launch V2 of our SEO training to have a 3rd big course available for our French audience.
- Recruit a content creator/trainer to develop the training offer, because being the only one to produce trainings and YouTube videos blocks the progress of other projects. And for the management of the social media, we will remain on a freelance collaboration to focus on the essential.
- Launch a 3rd website on the WPMarmite network, the work is in progress but we are still looking for a name for this website. 🤪
- Reach 100K unique monthly visitors in cruising speed (including 25K English speakers), for that we will:
- Continue to publish and update our content.
- Improve the internal linking.
- Optimize strategic pages.
- Do some outreach to get backlinks.
- Prioritize the production of English content with the most potential.
- Develop WPMarmite’s notoriety within the global WordPress ecosystem, including through the launch of a podcast.
- Organize the WPMarmite 2022 Summit (internal seminar) when we have regained some semblance of normal life in this country.
What to keep in mind about this crazy 2021 year in review?
First of all, recruiting was devilishly time consuming. I would like to put the right people in the right positions to allow us to go further and stronger, but it’s not that easy.
I also regret that the English version didn’t get bigger. However, Cynthia has not been idle with more than 75 translated contents in 2021. This is still not enough for our friend Google. Anyway, it’s not a big deal, we will continue our efforts, but in a more strategic way.
Regarding the revenue, I can’t give an update because my company’s accounting year ends on March 31. However, there should be a decrease of about 10% (around €300K, still). To be confirmed.
There are still some good things though! First, the publishing pace was stable on the blog, we also released some nice WordPress guides and we have well-functioning processes behind the scenes.
I also learned a lot about recruitment and management. I need to continue learning, especially by talking with more advanced entrepreneurs.
And one last thing, oh so important, I have the chance to work on what I love (WordPress related projects) with great people.
Now, we just need to increase WPMarmite’s revenue to invest more and work on even crazier projects!
If you want to help us, it’s very simple. You can:
- Check out our contents and take action.
- Go through our affiliate links to get equipped.
- Link to WPMarmite from content on your website.
- Recommend WPMarmite to people who want to create a website.
Anyway, thanks for following and trusting us for all these years. 🙏
See you around to follow my projects and let’s meet next year for another “year in review”! 👋
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