As 2014 is wrapping up, we’re in full swing getting ready for 2015. We’ve now surpassed 800 inventors selling over 3,700 products! Last month we passed 110k visits from 173 countries. The Tindie Community is growing including engineers from Fortune 500 R&D Labs to Manny, an 11 year old inventor from North Carolina. Because of this range in skillsets, we often hear visitors say things like, “I wish I could understand what this does.” Our focus for 2015 is to open the tent to everyone between the R&D labs & Manny!
We want to make it easier for visitors to discover interesting inventions. Last year we tried something new by removing categories and giving control to the community through markets. It was an interesting experiment, but time to cut our losses. Too many customers are confused. Soon into the new year we’ll be removing markets and returning to a simpler categories. Right now here are the main categories that will have a limited number of subcategories –
- DIY Electronics
- IoT & Smart Home
- Robots & Drones
- 3d Printing
- Camera Equipment
One thing you’ll notice is that our top products have great listings. We want to make it easier for inventors to create great listings so we are redesigning the new product process to make that simpler. We’re also going to soon start manually approving every product on Tindie. Before it can be published, we’ll provide feedback and guidance. For old products, we’re going to start cleaning those up as well. If a product has a poor listing it won’t sell. We’re very cognizant of that and, through out the year, this will be a constant focus.
The thing that makes Tindie special is our Community. It’s a unique group and we want to celebrate that more and more. As we looked at the current site, two things stood out that are making it difficult to connect everyone. Store names & Avatars. You’d be shocked how many visitors come to Tindie without realizing we’re a marketplace community. In 2015, we’ll remove the store names & avatars and replace them with the seller’s name and photo. It’s easier to relate to a person and we want to make sure visitors know immediately that we’re different from every other online retailer.
At the same time, we’re bringing back Tindie Hangouts! Early on, we held hangouts each week for inventors to show off what they’ve made. We going to start them back up, and actually do even more. Tindie Meetups at our office in Mountain View! We’ve got a nice large office we want to start hosting meetups for people in the area. The meetups will feature things people have made, tutorials, you name it! We’re near the San Antonio Caltrain Station so its super easy to get here from anywhere in the Bay.
2015 will be a busy year. We wanted to let everyone know ahead of the new year so we can start the conversation now. No changes are coming in the next few weeks (due to the holidays) however once January hits, we’ll be hitting the ground running!