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2021: The one where we achieved 10M ARR

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It’s that time of the year again where we like to kick start January with exactly what we got up to for the last 365 days of 2021. 

So, 2021. Many may call it the year of the QR code comeback. For us here at Weglot it was the one where we returned to the office. The one where we grew our team. Which meant it was the one where we saw even more product improvements. Even more technical questions were answered…And ultimately, it was the one where we achieved 10 million ARR

Fresh from the highs and lows of 2020, 2021 didn’t have too many surprises this time. Many lessons were learned in the previous year that made 2021 all the more manageable. 

It gave us the perspective that we could achieve a lot when it came to working remotely and with a renewed sense of normality, we were ready to get going, which was ultimately reflected in our yearly performance.

As always, in this article, we’ll be taking a look back on last year, what we learned, how we did it, and where we’re headed in 2022. 

Cheers to 2021 and our 10M ARR year! 

The Weglot performance

So, about that 10 million ARR. In 2021, we reached a milestone our two co-founders Rémy Berda and Augustin Prot could only dream of back in 2015. 

In fact, if you haven’t done so already, I’d recommend reading Rémy’s article about creating Weglot, where he details exactly how things got started, from idea to implementation to finding the very first customer. 

And, here are our co-founders 6 years ago celebrating that very first customer! 

Weglot co-founders

It’s clear that a lot has changed since those celebratory beers (and we’re not just talking about camera quality). 

Weglot team

Like all good startups, it took a solid foundation of hiring people that believed in Weglot to take it to the next level. 

2021 meant we continued that hiring process, worked harder than ever on Weglot to make it a solid translation solution for small businesses, right through to companies with thousands of employees. We scaled more than just our company, we scaled our product. 

And with that, we welcomed thousands of new customers in 2021 and hit our 800k MRR objective in October, ahead of schedule. 

Weglot MRR

We’ve always been a website translation solution for any site, but it was clear last year that bigger companies were understanding the impact of Weglot and how website translation doesn’t need to be taxing or costly. We welcomed household names such as Doordash and Tupperware to name just a few. 

In terms of company culture, we stayed true to the things we supported and started in 2020, and we again turned BFCM on its head and instead donated 50% of all sales made on both days to a number of charities the team at Weglot wanted to support. 

Whilst we were pretty chuffed with the 20k we raised in 2020, we couldn’t have imagined the 35k we donated in 2021! Growing Weglot enabled us to do this again and donate an even bigger sum and as we said back in 2020 it’s a subject matter close to our hearts and something we’d like to continue doing and inspiring others to follow suit!

bfcm money raised

The product 

As ever, we took the Weglot product to new heights in 2021 as you’ve hopefully seen within your very own website translation project. You’ll also have been able to catch all our updates live on our changelog which we update every 2 weeks and will continue to do so going into 2022. 

So, how about some numbers: 

  • 133,916 registered users
  • 73,581 translation projects created
  • 85,422 languages added
  • 13,898,851 manual edits made
  • 73,079 glossary rules created

New features added

What about those new features then? Our dev team released a number of new features literally every two weeks and as a team, we come together to see exactly what those features are and how they’ll ultimately benefit you as a customer. 

During that meeting, we also give customer feedback or even add our own ideas. And, if you ever have an idea, then you can add it to our roadmap!

Let’s take a look at some of the standout features of 2021.  

Custom languages and custom subdomains 

Yep, that’s right, you asked for it and we delivered! We made it possible for you to add custom languages. So whether that’s UK English or Latin American Spanish, or Canadian French or even Klingon – just head on over to your Weglot Dashboard and hit “create a custom language”

custom language

And, with that, it was also possible to create custom subdomains and upload your own flag. 

custom flag

Translation management by URL

Next up, an easier way to manage your translations by URL. We created a whole new area in your dashboard named “URLs” to give you the bigger picture when it comes to your website translation project. 

Here you get an overview of what percentage of a particular URL has been manually edited, if there’s a specific URL that hasn’t been synced yet (no translations found) or if you’re missing a URL entirely. 

url management

Translate URLs

Then, we gave you the option to translate your URLs to add even more localization to your website translation project – with the option to use machine translation or manual edits.

translate urls

Translation management features

Alongside some of our bigger features, we also worked to optimize your translations workflow. There were several updates and new additions here, including:

  • Bringing back search and replace in the translations list
  • The option to assign a translation to anyone you’ve added to your translation project
  • A filter option to see which translations have been ‘reviewed by’ who 
  • Import and export of your glossary 
  • The option to delete inactive translations to keep your translation project clean 
  • Subdirectories option for all technologies (in beta) 

We also continued making small cosmetic edits across the dashboard making it sleeker, easier to use, and an overall cleaner look. You’ll see these improvements continue into 2022, so watch this space! 

CMS presence 

We then worked hard on updating the way we integrate with a number of different CMS platforms. 

We strengthened our integrations to include a Wix app within the AppMarket, updated our Shopify app to include an improved setup and subdomains integration, created an integration live on the Square Online App Marketplace, and lastly, became an official WordPress VIP technology partner

Helping our customers 

As usual, the Weglot support team has been there for our users no matter how big or small their question was. In fact, we helped more than 29,000 customers, sent 58,000+ messages, and answered 79% of our users in less than 2 hours in 2021. 

  • Helped: 29,343 customers
  • 58,000+ messages sent
  • 79% customers in under 2 hours

What’s more, our knowledge base continued to grow, with almost 100 articles at your fingertips, addressing the most frequently asked Weglot questions and some more advanced docs for those looking to get the most out of Weglot. You must be seeing the benefit as 322,818 of you visited our help docs in 2021! 

And, it’s not just the glowing reviews that our support team receives day in day out (more on those in a minute), but we’ve also been recognized by software review platform G2

In its winter report, we received no less than 5 badges of honor for a number of achievements that we’ve been proudly displaying on our website and social media channels. 

G2 reviews

We hit more than 3,000 reviews across WordPress, Shopify, G2, Trustpilot, and more, with an average of 4.8 out of 5! 

Here are just a few of the reviews we’re most proud of this year.

Building the Weglot brand  

Having experimented with target audiences, content formats, new partnerships, and upgrading our newsletter, 2021 again saw us level up when it came to promoting Weglot and all we do to help companies go multilingual. 

Some highlights included:

  • 4,400 hours of Weglot videos watched
  • Almost 5,000 social media friends
  • 26% increase in new website visitors
  • 22 events sponsored

Having covered a plethora of topics over on our blog, we stepped away from posting 2 times a week and instead set about creating more evergreen guides to help those looking into website translation on our main website. This gave way to a new resources section on our website which we’ll be updating in the next couple of weeks so keep your eyes peeled! 

We also launched a brand new page specifically for potential enterprise users, created a data hub showcasing how important website localization/translation is, and changed up our customer page to better showcase our customer stories. 

Alongside this, we also revamped our newsletter to better reflect our new branding and make the content more relevant to our readers. 

And, if you’re not subscribed to our newsletter then you’re missing out on great content such as…

newsletter meme

We also stepped up our offering to web agencies and freelancers. Over the last couple of years, we’ve been working closely with both groups to gain insight into how they use Weglot on their client websites. 

After all, they are the ones using Weglot regularly and on numerous use cases, so building relationships with this audience made sense. So in 2021, we created a better channel of communication with them, speaking to them regularly, attending events so we could meet them in person, and providing useful information in the form of a specific Weglot agency newsletter. 

This has led us to create some pretty cool webinars throughout the year, gain some new case studies, and ultimately keep moving forward with Weglot’s features. You can read more about what we do with agencies on our blog

We also collaborated with a number of web agencies to launch some pretty cool showcase websites to demonstrate the power of Weglot on a number of technologies. 

We had the 3D globes project with Webflow agency Finsweet. 

finsweet globes

The first of two Wix showcases, this one using the Editor X and agency Awaken Studio. 

wix showcase editor x

And, the other one with The Brown Owl agency. 

wix showcase

We also had a bit of fun with Webflow agency Refokus and German stereotypes which ended up being featured in Webflow’s 2021 Year in Review article

So whilst communications continued online, what about face-to-face events? Yet again, 2021 threw a few curveballs – certainly in the beginning part of the year, and then towards the end, things started going back online. 

However, we did manage to have some presence at a number of WordPress meetups and also some no code events too. 

  • 22 events sponsored
  • 15 meetups sponsored
  • 13 events hosted by Weglot

You might have also taken part in some of our webinars last year, where we covered everything from creating landing pages in Webflow to the future of no code – you can watch them all on playback here

Back to face-to-face events. Last year we attended a number of events that we’d never been to before which gave us the chance to meet potential Weglot customers from various industries in person and talk over the issues they face with website translation. 

Our sales team worked long hours (with a party or two in-between) managing the Weglot stand at Paris Retail Week and 1-1 Biarritz.

paris retail week weglot team
Biarritz

These types of events not only allowed us to speak to new people who didn’t know about Weglot but also helped us gather relevant feedback to relay back to the team on what features people are looking for in a website translation tool. 

The events were a success, we made multiple connections that turned into new Weglot clients and got to enjoy meeting current Weglot users too! We’re looking forward to exhibiting at even more in-person events in 2022 🤞. 

Keep an eye out on our social media to see where we’ll be heading this year! 

The team 

Whilst we certainly enjoyed the digital events of 2020, 2021 gave us more of our fair share of parties, after-work drinks, and team-building trips that made IRL all the more appreciated.

We might have been off to a bit of a rough start in early 2021 but we certainly made up for it. 

After numerous canceled events in 2020, it was only natural that our annual work seminar was going to be as epic as possible. And, it didn’t disappoint. 2 days in Aix-en-Provence was just what we all needed.

We moved offices twice! With a brand new office signed and sealed, work started on our forever home, just a stone’s throw away from our old office. With a couple of months needed to create a space where we could actually fit, we moved to WeWork for the summer. 

The initial excitement of free coffee, on tap sparkling water and a roof terrace with a view that was ‘pas mal’ to say the least, soon wore off as office rumors of our new space circulated. 

rooftop

A few delays later and we were in. Our new space had arrived and with it an office we could see ourselves grow in. Where we could eat lunch as a team together, have enough meeting rooms to grow that Weglot strategy, a kitchen with two ovens to fuel the team, enough seating for a global Weglot takeover, and lastly, just a pretty cool spot to feel like “we did it”. 

weglot new office

And, funnily enough, Weglot went full circle and our new office is exactly where our first office was 5 years ago. 

We wasted no time and our moving party was memorable, to say the least. 

We say it every year, but naturally, we added some new team members in 2021! 

With another 6 interns joining the Weglot support team for 6-month intervals, we benefited from not only their technical skills but also their 5 pm Friday memes. 

And in terms of full-time hires, we welcomed 10 new team members! 

Cheers to 2021

So, that’s a wrap on our 2021. A year full of product growth, company growth, and building closer team bonds. 

We got through that one a little easier than the year before and hopefully, when I’m writing up the 2022 year in review, we won’t be mentioning you know what. 

2022, we’re ready! Expect bigger product features, a growing team to help with that, and hopefully the chance to meet and connect with you at an event in the next 12 months. 

As ever we couldn’t have had the year we had if it wasn’t for you, our customers, our valued partners, ambassadors, Weglot friends, our own families, and anyone that has supported us in any small way. 

We’re proud of our 2021 and we hope to say the same about 2022. 

Quel travail d’équipe ! 🚀

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