Today marks a special day for the Wild Apricot team - it's a one year birthday for our product and our blog!
It all started in July 2006 when we first introduced Wild Apricot to the world. We already knew from first-hand experience, that people running small associations, clubs and non-profits are overworked and underpaid (IF paid at all!). Forced to manage too many routine administrative tasks better suited for robots, not humans. We knew that they need better tools to juggle their multitude of tasks (donor management, membership database, event registration, website updates, mass emails, online payments etc.) and we were trying to figure out if it makes sense for us to design and build our own software for that - focused on ease of use and integrating all those functions. In the end, we felt that we can help thousands of organizations as well as make this a viable business.
The past twelve months have been challenging, rewarding and fun for all of us here at the Wild Apricot team and we look forward to more great things in our second year. We started out with about 400 different features planned in the product - and by now we have implemented many of them - but have a new, much larger list based on all the feedback from our clients and prospective users - as well as new ideas from our team! The world around us is changing - and the product has to evolve to address changing needs. Also, our top priority for Wild Apricot has always been ease of use - and while we are very happy with the positive feedback we got, we have many many ideas on how to make it better (and it is tough to keep the product easy to use but provide powerful options and functions for more advanced users).
Did you know that in the past year:
- Wild Apricot had 25 releases (version updates) in a year, based on feedback from clients
- We wrote 72 blog posts
- More than 1,840 organizations signed up and counting (including free and trial accounts)
- We received (and promptly answered!) 2,894 support emails and forum posts
- Over 22,000 man-hours went into product design, development and testing
The Wild Apricot blog started around the same time the product was launched. Initially, we thought about it as a blog about our product. As time went on however, we realized that there are many other interesting technologies people can benefit from - whether they use Wild Apricot or not - and decided to refocus on broader issues: Helping administrators, amateur webmasters and volunteers to make sense of modern web technology and apply it for their non-profit organization, association or club. It has been a journey worth taking!
I came on board and started writing for the Wild Apricot blog in December 2006. Looking back it's been the best seven months of my life. Although there were some really tough times along the way (so much stuff going on at the same time!), it was all worth while. I've seen first-hand how this blog continues to evolve thanks to our loyal readers.
Thanks to everyone who has been reading our blog from the beginning, those of you who've found us along the way and all of you new visitors and regular commenters. Our numbers keep growing and that keeps us going knowing that people are finding the information we provide useful.
The blog is becoming an authoritative voice in so-called 'nptech' community - a good place to get information about web technology and social media tools for associations, clubs, charities, and other non-profit and member-based organizations. We also have a community forum for amateur webmasters, consultants, board members and administrators. It's a place where you can discuss any issues related to your association, club or any other kind of member-based or non-profit organization as well as share resources and tips on taming the web technology! Please feel free to take part.
The first blog post that got some major attention was The Birth of Wild Apricot Logo.
The top 10 most popular blog posts by views are:
And a few of our favorites are:
We've had a tremendous ride along the way with all of you and look forward to all the great things to come. Please help us celebrate these past twelve months. If you enjoy this blog, consider recommending it to a friend or colleague. If there is any content you'd like to see more (or less) of, leave a comment.
Thanks again to everyone who has supported Wild Apricot over the last year and helped us grow. It means the world to see how our product is helping organizations all over the world. Here’s to another year!nptech nonprofit web2.0