Hey everyone, welcome to this quarterly BlogTec update!
In the first quarter of 2023, we slightly exceeded our revenue forecast, with a quarterly growth of 26,12%, and a YoY growth of 144,96%. We achieved this mainly due to a high customer spend and the lowest subscription churn we had so far.
▪️ YoY Growth: 144,96%
▪️ Quarterly Growth: 26,12%
▪️ Headcount: 9 (+2)
In Q1, we worked on improving our basic company structures, to make sure we stay efficient while growing further.
- The first key measurement we took was significantly improving our data and reporting, to make sure we have a good overview of all important company metrics.
- Secondly, we implemented a new way of working across all departments. We’re now using the Scrum framework in all teams, which successfully helped us to improve the overview of what the different teams are working on, as well as the short- and mid-term prioritization of projects and tasks.
- Our headcount grew to 9 people, as we added two new members to the team, a Performance Marketing Manager, and a Content Marketing Manager.
▪️ Customer Growth: 15,52%
Our Marketing efforts focused on improving our marketing communication and scaling existing efforts.
- We changed our key message from being a “Website Traffic Solution” to being a “SEO (Service) Solution”. This is a way better description of what we’re doing, and what we’ll keep focusing on.
- To further increase marketing communication and conversion rates, we launched a brand-new home page, new product pages, case studies of customers with SEO results and content examples, new blog call-to-actions, and improved designs for our existing and new SEO landing pages.
- We increased our existing marketing efforts, which are SEO for ourselves, as well as paid advertising. Even though we just increased our efforts 3 months ago, SEO is starting to show first results with rankings beginning to increase.
- We tried Google Ads for the first time, with an already great CPL so far.
- We built an affiliate system, which we will start nurturing in Q2.
▪️ Active Companies: +13%
▪️ Active Subscriptions: +20%
▪️ Avg. Subscription Churn: 4.71% (11,26% prev. quarter)
We will significantly increase our product efforts in Q2, but still shipped some great improvements in Q1.
- Our translation service is now available in Spanish and French.
- We improved our loading speeds of the app and website by over 50%, through moving them to a more optimized hosting environment.
- Customers can now use bank transfer as a payment method, which was highly requested and will lower our expenses for gateway fees in the future.
▪️ Q2 YoY Growth Forecast: 136,57%
▪️ Q2 Quarterly Growth Forecast: 31,29%
The key challenges we’re currently facing are low lead and new paying customer numbers, so while our overall revenue results are good, our customer acquisition numbers are currently not where we want them to be.
This mainly comes from our Meta ads not performing as they used to, which, we think, is caused by our audience being tired of our similar messages. Also, SEO takes time, and even if it slowly starts to show first results, it will take lots more time to show significant effects.
To face that issue, we will, in addition to recurring efforts, add new messages to our advertising campaigns, for example, advertising new products that we didn’t advertise before.
Secondly, we will find new ways to generate high-quality leads. We decided to try advertising placements in podcasts and newsletters, and we’re creating a team to build partnerships with agencies and brands, with a focus on nurturing our new affiliate system.
Lastly, we will try to reach bigger and additional audiences, by expanding our Google Ads, which are showing great potential, and by starting paid advertising outside the DACH region, with trying the Italian, French, and Spanish markets.
In Q2, we will add a big focus on product development and expansion. First, we can’t only depend on marketing to drive growth, but we’ll need to keep achieving growth by product as well. Secondly, long-term, we will need more products to face potential price and therefore growth decreases due to AI evolving.
New BlogTec Products:
- We will start working on a second product, which will be a backlink marketplace that will be integrated into our current platform. Basically, it gives companies the chance to buy partnerships/placements on other websites. On the other hand, website owners can sign up to monetize their website. This is a great solution for customers who are looking for a highly individualized and cost-efficient link building solution.
- We’re also looking into a third product line — (AI-based) SEO software. This is at a really early stage, but a market that is worth trying. Short-term, we are thinking about building AI-based software that automizes technical SEO tasks, and can be implemented into CMS like WordPress or Shopify through plugins. The competition is still rather small, and it’s a great way to take a step into the (AI) software space.
Additional Product Plans in Q2:
- We will double the number of languages we offer for our translation service, by adding Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, and Polish.
- We’re also looking into launching more languages for all services to join new markets. Currently, we offer all services in English and German, as launching all services in a new language is quite complex with the requirements to offer support and sales in that language, as well as acquiring the professionals.
- Of course, we will keep working on further enhancements to our SEO service marketplace product.
- To make all that possible, we plan to double the size of our Engineering team. We will split up the department into two teams. One of our existing developers will lead one team, and we’re hiring another lead for the other team.
We reached our revenue growth goal, which is the most important. Our product and operations KPIs are great as well. However, we underperformed in terms of leads and new paying customers, which we are acting on.
I’m especially happy with the way we professionalized this quarter. We set important fundamentals for future growth by significantly improving data and reporting, as well as project management.
I’m also super excited about what’s ahead in terms of product. Growth doesn’t just come from marketing, but also from product, and if we want to keep growing at the speed we had in the past, we have to add a strong focus on product again.