When we released our first beta version of OnPage.org in July of 2012, we did not dare to dream that there would be over 100,000 users successfully using our software somewhere along the line.
We were actually hesistant at first, unsure of the true business potential of our software that our technical Mastermind and CTO Merlin had coded to be used originally only by us. I myself have been a fan of Xenu and the Frog for the longest time, but Merlin´s revolutional approach changed my professional SEO life decisively. Before I would have worked eight hours for a medium sized website audit to find about 90% of the errors. With Merlin´s software I nabbed 100% within just an hour. We limited the amount of beta accounts to 100, each at €89 per month. Those 100 beta accounts sold in less than 24 hours, paving the way for a bootstrapped launch of OnPage.org a month later.
We have been full throttle ever since - Merlin, myself and our COO Andi, our very own Admiral Ackbar. Not to forget my longtime business partner and former Google Executive Niels. I am very grateful for having extraordinary co-founders, with seemingly unlimited persistence and an indomitable will to make OnPage.org the best software for ensuring superior website quality.
Undoubtedly, there was some luck involved as well. We were lucky to launch a software dedicated to on-page optimization as on-page optimization grew and businesses focused more than ever on having a technically perfect, fast loading website, which also works well on all desktop and mobile devices.
Three and a half years and 100,000 users later, we are still boostrapped, growing strong each month just out of cash flow. We have also found a new office: an old school for girls with an 100 year old gym in the basement. Since it used to be a school, we call our office the OnPage.org Campus.
Users are always welcome to visit! Please bring cake, though :) We are 35 people now, seems like a long time from working together in a single room, with a door as an improvised desk.
Growing to 35 people has definitely been a unique experience but also very rewarding. Oftentimes it is just us founders standing in the spotlight but it's the whole team, that deserves credit. We are very thankful to have assembled such a great team of truly fantastic Superheros, that are sharing our relentless passion for technical SEO.
Our focus has always been the software itself. Each of our technology jumps has been an almost complete overhaul of our technology and infrastructure to cope with our ever increasing customer base and especially the needs of new enterprise clients. In November of last year we introduced the 3rd version of OnPage.org - labeled #V3 - which lived up to our own, high standard of delivering the most flexible, reliable and comprehensive crawling solution on the market today. It was only then, that we really felt comfortable to start rolling out our software internationally.
There have been two major milestones for us in our mission to reach 100,000 users. Our free version OnPage.org FREE, launched May of last year, was definitely a huge step for us, allowing small website owners to leverage the full power of OnPage.org absolutely free of charge. The second major milestone was the integration into the popular Yoast WordPress SEO plugin, where we offer a quick indexability check for now. The Yoast WordPress SEO plugin is currently being used by 8,9% of the top 1 million websites, well deserved I might add. Both of these milestones have been essential to make ourself known within the international Webmaster- and SEO-community. We are far from being used by only small Webmasters though. More than 50% of wide-coverage websites in Germany (according to AGOF) are using our software. We love pushing our crawlers to the limit.
As of today we have users from 196 different countries! Of course our main market is still Germany with 25,725 overall users but our US user base is growing fast, with now over 14,000 Webmasters utilizing our software to build better websites. 3rd place is the UK with over 6,000 users already. The UK ist second though, when it comes to larger, enterprise accounts. OnPage.org is now available in three different languages - German, English and Spanish (our website also speaks Italian and Turkish) - next up is a french translation since we already have over 2,800 users in France. On the other end of the scale, I love that we even have exactly one user from the Vatican City State. Although I think, if you already have the help of God, you probably don´t need OnPage.org :)
Of course, not all users are paying customers as well, but we are happy with the percentage so far. Our customer base has been growing strong every month. Every single user is important, since every user can be an advocate. We are very ambitious, our amps go to 11, we are always trying to give 110%. In this line of work, you can´t just talk big, you have to proof your capabilities each and every day.
Of course, there's always users churning away but we have managed to reduce our monthly churn to below 5%. We are all working very hard to make our software a bit better each day. We are frequently releasing new features and tools, listening very closely to feedback and suggestions of our users.
But today is not just about us - it´s also about our 100,000th user: Coen Lauwerijssen from the Netherlands. He signed up at 4:37am CET on February 1st. We had over 200 people guessing date & time for the chance to win a new iPad Pro. It was Roman Hammer who took the best guess, he missed the actual time by just 4 hours. Well deserved Roman, have fun with your new iPad!
I was curious to find out a bit more about our milestone-user, so I asked Coen 5 quick questions:
How did you hear about OnPage.org?
I often use the Yoast SEO plugin to check my pages for SEO, since a couple of months there is the option to check the whole website with OnPage.org, which I decided to do, first for another website and now for our metaquip website.
What is the name of your website?
www.metaquip.nl we are selling laser machines and 3D printers and related services.
What are your expectations from the use of OnPage.org?
First a quick check for large errors, and later smaller optimizations to improve performance of our website.
Do you use the Software primarily for quality control or do you actively work in the SEO area? If so, which SEO tip do you think is the most important?
I am just a beginner in the field of SEO, I mostly try to create quality content that relates to our audience, and of course I prefer it when people get to see what we want to share. Learning everyday how to make improvements and see what the impact of these improvements is.
My tip? 80-20 check. First check if there are no red flags blocking us from being found, the other 20 percent we improve step by step.
Thank you very much, Coen! Thanks for being our 100,000th user :)
Published on 02/04/2016 by Marcus Tandler.
Marcus loves SEO. He’s a proud member of the Achuar tribe and his Indian name “Ni Nawenak Ukutin“ (“White warrior who shot himself into the foot“) reveals why he must not carry a weapon in the jungle any more. Marcus is happy to live on nothing but pretzels, kaiserschmarrn and streuselkuchen for days on end.