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Propeller, Serendipity and > 7.5K visits in 2 days

Propeller website hits by 7.5k visits in 2 days

Recently, our side project Propeller received more than 7.5k visits in just 2 days and became famous overnight! This article explains how did we do that but first, what is Propeller?

Propeller is a front-end responsive framework based on Google’s Material Design and Bootstrap.

It is a ready-to-use component library with detailed documentation and specific code examples. Developers have an option to download individual components for smaller projects or a full library to start something big.

Created at DIGICORP, Propeller is the first step towards giving back to the community.

How did we promote Propeller?

We launched Propeller in October, 2016. We did various unorganized activities to promote it after that. Primary target audience for Propeller was Front-end developers or designers.

First, we made Propeller website search engine friendly. We did keyword research and set the targeted keywords throughout the website to get better search engine rankings. We applied on-site seo techniques such as setting up metadata, navigation, site speed, UI/UX improvements. We kept optimising metadata and keywords to get better rankings on Google. This was obviously for long-term so didn’t get much traffic in short term.

Then, we targeted some well known startup directories to submit Propeller hoping to get some traction. We submitted Propeller on Betapage, ProductHunt, StartupRanking and many more but no luck!

Now one fine day, one of our co-founders Abhishek Desai, submitted Propeller on HackerNews. It is a community started by Paul Graham for sharing “Anything that good hackers would find interesting”.

Guess what happened the next day? Propeller received more than 6k visits in just one day! We were surprised to see this, and we couldn’t believe the numbers. We went on to check the detailed reports and found that the hits were NOT coming from HackerNews! People were coming from reddit.com in big numbers (but we never submitted anything on reddit.com).

We searched Reddit for “Propeller” and found this.

So what just happened?

In one word, serendipity.

the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.”

Someone from hackernews shared Propeller on reddit.com and it went viral! We received tremendous feedback (Look at the number of comments in above screenshot). Some told us to improve, some criticised, some questioned, some appreciated – mixed feedback but a pretty good one. Developers and designers from around the world were participating in the conversations and giving their valuable opinions and feedback. A big deal for us.

We patiently replied all comments on all Reddit threads and started working immediately on the feedback. We altered our product roadmap accordingly and put it up on our website as well for the community to see. In short, we started rolling like never before.

We learned a great (life) lesson from this experience.

World may surprise you if you consistently keep doing whatever you are good at. We were hoping to get good traction from Product Hunt, Betapage, HackerNews but something completely unexpected clicked!

As Steve Jobs said in his famous speech at Stanford,

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

We know we know, serendipity is not a great traction method but well it worked for us! 🙂

So how did you get traction for your products? Did serendipity played any role in it?

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