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Cover image for 📈 What is the size of dev.to community we could expect in a year?

📈 What is the size of dev.to community we could expect in a year?

alex_barashkov profile image Alex Barashkov ・2 min read

Writing an article is not only about writing but also about reading – how many people will read your masterpiece. The existing dev.to community probably the best place at the moment, and definitely really “live” community of developers. Hopefully, we will be able to make the community even better and more and more people will join us soon.

Inspired by this article I wanted to find out, what’s the number of users joining dev.to every month and what’s the size of the community, we could expect by the end of the next year. Fortunately, it was possible to do with dev.to API. Special thank you to Alexander, who grabbed all that data for me.

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I took the data since the beginning of 2017 and until November 2018. We could mention on the chart that there are no significant explosions and despite of a few peaks we have stable users monthly growth. In 2017 we had 3k-3.5k average monthly growth of users, so at the end of 2018, we will have around 6-6.5k per month.

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Based on trend line we could calculate that at the end of next year dev.to the community will have at least 220k users and every month 10 thousands new users will join us.

But I have a personal feeling that 2019 will be a great year for dev.to and we will end up with 500k users. What do you think?

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Discussion

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Nice job with this!

So right now we have ~2 million visitors a month. I'm sure there is some double-counting there, but basically we have plenty more folks coming to the site than signing up. This is pretty natural, how many times do you sign up after you've landed on a random website coming from Google or Twitter.

So getting to that 500k number will be a matter of steadily increasing signup rate and continuing to steadily grow the distribution of folks' posts. All this needs to be done without being intrusive or annoying because reading while not signed in is a perfectly legitimate case and we wouldn't want to inundate people with aggressive popups.

The nice thing is that with all the different levers we have to pull to keep this community working correctly, mostly bug free, and everything, we don't exactly have a dedicated "growth" team. So we're far from maximizing some of this stuff. So I agree with you that 2019 will be a big year as we have some more time for that and 500k users should happen. The important thing is that we keep things working for all those 500k and the quality of the community is able to scale alongside the user-base.

 

This is probably the best developer community I've ever experienced, so I truly hope the culture scales along with the user-base. I think that since it's already so friendly and inviting, with quality posts, that the "tone" should already be fairly strongly set.

 

Yeah, it will be an ongoing struggle to get right. It’ll be folks like you who really see the value in this culture that make it happen.

 

Wow! I didn't know we were that many :D

How did you grab the data?

 
 

We are a lot, those are the estimated monthly visitor (not sure how accurate it's though).
Dev.to estimated monthly visits

 

You have nothing to worry about, I'm sure it will grow in constant speed. Clean design and focus on content is the most powerful side of dev.to - that convinced me to join. If that stays like it is, definitely we will see more and more devs joining our little community. Congrats everyone!

 

@ben any idea what happened around the time of the outliers? Like November 2017. Extra marketing push or anything?

 

Early 2017 was a big sticker giveaway.
November 2017 was when we went viral briefly in Japan.
August 2018 is when we went open source.

 

Hey Alex, planning on doing a follow-up post soon?