What Happened at MailPoet in 2020?

Illustration by Mary Delaney 2020

2020 was a strange year for the MailPoet team, just like for the rest of the world. We realize how lucky we are to be a distributed team within an industry that saw growth. Many people in our immediate circles have had difficult times, bringing in sharp focus the tough realities and growing inequalities around us. We try to stay positive and hope that the situation comes under control this new year.

In this retrospective post, I’ll cover the main highlights of MailPoet in 2020. 

MailPoet is now a part of WooCommerce

We were acquired by WooCommerce in December 2020. Many people have asked me in private: “So, how do you really feel about it?”. I can publicly answer this: it’s been wonderful on all levels.

In recent years, I’ve received a number of proposals from investors, which I turned down. I was quite a happy poet myself and was not eager to look for an exit. The vibe in our team is great, we’re profitable and growing. Our working conditions are excellent.

It’s only once Automattic, the owners of WooCommerce, reached out for talks of partnerships, did I seriously consider selling MailPoet.

My priorities for this to happen were in this order:

  1. Good conditions for my colleagues
  2. Perennial MailPoet improvements
  3. Matching my asking price

All three were met by WooCommerce. I’m still discovering the inner workings of Automattic, but I can assure you that it’s a great organization. Most importantly, they’re intent on improving our product, which bodes well for our users, a quarter of which use WooCommerce, and future users.

Redesign of our user interface

Our plugin got a facelift. We do look a lot fresher and younger, don’t you think?

We broke away from the WordPress admin’s design since we felt it was growing old. We’re very happy with the end result ourselves, and the feedback has been great.

New form editor

We took the bet to adopt Gutenberg as our new signup form editor, WordPress’ new default editor. We are part of a select few plugins that have used Gutenberg for another purpose. 

Feedback has been mixed, but we’re happy to use a builder that is open source, maintained and evolving rapidly instead of reinventing the wheel ourselves from scratch.

Half a billion emails sent

MailPoet sent 454,862,036 emails in 2020, a 45% increase over the previous year. Our delivery rate was a near perfect 98.5%, a reflection of our hard work maintaining our solid reputation as senders.

Our sending service has been rock solid with near perfect uptimes, and this is despite major upgrades and migration from the UK to Germany in preparation for Brexit.

Sending all website emails

MailPoet can now optionally send all your website’s emails, not just MailPoet’s own. This avoids website owners installing a dedicated plugin just for this purpose. Those have proved popular and we decided to simplify our users’ lives.

Dozens of small improvements

Thanks to our weekly releases, we constantly rolled out bug fixes and improvements  throughout the year, like the following ones:

Great content

Laura joined our team in early 2020. Thanks to her and our fabulous freelance writers, we’ve taken our educational content to another level. It’s been really fun to showcase tips and tricks to our users.

The Repository weekly newsletter

Our own newsletter on WordPress news in collaboration with Words by Bird celebrated its one year anniversary! 

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Thanks to our users for having pushed us forward. We’re very much real human beings listening to all the feedback we get online. 

Can’t wait to bring more to you in 2021!