Entering 2019, Strapi is leading the charge in making it the year where the Headless CMS space matures and becomes the standard way for individuals and companies to build their sites and apps. Strapi is already followed by countless proprietary, paid services and products hoping to capitalize on this next evolution of software development. Yet Strapi remains committed and will continue to lead this space by being the open sourced solution for serious developers wanting to control their data, deployment and tech stack.
If 2018 saw the rise and acceptance of GraphQL, THE missing link to truly allowing complete Headless CMS implementation; then in 2019 all companies achieve their destiny and liberate themselves from the reliance on monolithic applications, data constraints, wasted developer time and resources. Developing efficient API first applications is now possible. Strapi fills the gap of application management. You build the app or site, and managing it is now possible for anyone on your team.
So, first of all, Happy New Year! The curtain closed for 2018. As we start in 2019 we wanted to share a few statistics, events and announcements. These that built last year and prepared for this one.
Over the last 12 months, Strapi grew:
- from alpha 7 to alpha 17 🏗
- from 2,500 to 15,000 downloads per month 💻
- from 2,000 to 10,000 stars on GitHub 🌟 (give yours!)
- from 27 to 173 contributors 🙌
- from 2 to 14 translations 🗣
- from 4 to 6 people on the team 👨👩👧👦
Users downloaded Strapi 120K times in 2018, vs. 19K times in 2017. It is now used by thousands of companies the world over. Companies committed to full control of their data, security and their tech stack. We are proud to count a growing number of web agencies and freelancers who migrated to Strapi. They delivered their projects faster and maintained future security over their stack.
The numbers speak for themselves. 2018 was super exciting and made Strapi the most advanced open source, Node.js based, Headless CMS!
Strapi takes over the Headless CMS space in 2019, by section:
2018 achievements 👀
Let’s look at our most important achievements for 2018!
Putting the community first
Behind every project, there is a team. Behind every open source project, there is a community.
Everything started with a very community-oriented action: the Vote page release. As an open source project, we strongly believe in collective intelligence. Since your opinion is the one which matters, we published the Vote page, it listed a features backlog and let you upvote the ones you want most.
Later in the year though, we reached the limit of this solution to properly draw the roadmap. So, we migrated to Product Board, where you still can vote but also comment on features and fully explore the roadmap.
With almost one release per month, your favorite open source Headless CMS has been fleshed out:
- Alpha 9: Authentication with providers, Email templates customisation, Unique Email Signup.
- Alpha 10: Settings in Database, rewrite Input Library.
- Alpha 11: File Upload.
- Alpha 12: GraphQL, Rich Text Editor and redesigned Dashboard.
- Alpha 12.5: Search, Filters & Bulk Actions.
- API Documentation (Swagger) plugin.
File Upload, GraphQL, Rich Text Editor and API Documentation have probably been the most anticipated features (a direct result of the new Vote page).
Offering a good product is great, helping you to use it is even better. With that in mind, we produced a lot of content, both by the team and the community. Here's a summary of your most appreciated tutorials and articles:
- Building a blog with Gatsby and Strapi.
- Deploying a Strapi API on Heroku.
- 🍝 Cooking a Deliveroo clone with Nuxt (Vue.js), GraphQL, Strapi and Stripe. Thank you Ryan for adapting it to Next!
- How to deploy a Strapi API on Ubuntu 16.04.
- Building a static blog using Jekyll and Strapi.
Making the project sustainable
As you may know, we raised some money this summer. This is great news for growing the team, ensuring the project is better known and, more importantly, ensuring its sustainability!
The best way to be sustainable is, of course, to have some revenue. This is why we ran some tests on the website this summer. The results of these tests were very positive. Rest assured, open source is a key value for us, and this is why Strapi is and will always be open source.
Focus on Headless CMS
Strapi has always been about APIs, proof is the origin of its name: Bootstrap your API (at this moment you suddenly discover the origin of the name 😉).
For a long time, we have considered Strapi as a "Node.js framework with an Admin Panel", or even a "Content Management Framework"; neither is clear. But the API area is a very large one. So, to be relevant, we had to be more specific.
For that reason, we finally asked you - users, contributors, followers - to define Strapi with your own words. This following reply is probably the most representative we received (feel free to add yours)!
Considering Strapi as a CMS was at first hard for us because it sounded restrictive. But more than 50% of you use Strapi as a CMS, and the CMS universe needed a second big bang.
Previous generation CMS's (yes WordPress, we are thinking about you), filled a need to display and manage web pages (the head). But during the last few years, the number of devices exploded. From computers to smartphones, from smartwatches to IoT devices, content is now displayed on a growing number of different platforms. Each platform and channel now connect with each other. Besides, front-end frameworks (React, Vue, Angular, etc.) are the cause and the result of this new trend. To avoid duplication, developers manage and make content available to each platform. A CMS accomplishes this by a centralized "source of truth". This, referred to as an "API", is what each platform connects to.
This new wave of CMS removed the visible part: they became Headless.
Don't worry, this process harmed no one 🙂 But a lot of companies are surfing on this wave. The large majority of them offer paid closed source, cloud-based (SaaS) solutions. These types of solutions may work for relatively straightforward applications. For many developers, an off-the-shelf admin panel and API falls short of their needs. Many requirements also include keeping the data stored on secure private servers. And if their service is down, yours is too. Well, in the end, you do not control your CMS and your content.
For these reasons (and others), open source software is a good option for companies who need to keep control of their data. We are proud to have many enterprise companies concerned about customization and data ownership among our users.
We strongly believe the open source nature of Strapi will make it the de-facto Headless CMS.
Promoting Strapi with no bullshit
To make it happen, we already started spreading the word. For the first time, we had speakers at the API Days in Paris, France.
As our users are the best ambassadors of Strapi, we try to invite them each time we can, as a testimonial as well as a reward.
For this major event, we invited Derrick Mehaffy. Derrick is one of the most active contributors of the Strapi community. He responded to more than 600 issues and pull requests on the GitHub repository! If you joined the public Slack, I am sure he answered at least one of your questions. Thanks again Derrick, and all the other contributors, for what you do each and every day for Strapi.
The team grew: Alexandre and Yves recently joined team! Alexandre (Front-End Engineer, on the right), will develop the features you have been waiting for. Yves (Marketing and Communication manager, on the left) will help you with being even more satisfied.
Behind every open source project, there is a community. Behind every project, there is a team.
We consider ourselves more as a family than a team. We love spending time together. In October, we have spent a few days in Marrakech, Marrocco. Here are some pictures of this trip!
Some other rock stars are joining the team over the next few months. Stay tuned!
Oh, by the way, we are still hiring, join us! 👋
What's next? 🛣
Last year was a great year. Get ready for something even more exciting.
Two words structure 2019: "Product" and "Community".
Strapi will really come to life when any developer will be able to develop its own plugins and share them with others. The power of Strapi lives in its plugin system and to reach this goal, we are going to release two things:
Buffet, our new component library built with React and Styled-Component. Like Bootstrap, we'll offer to the community a bunch of components (input, button, list, tables, etc) to the community to give the power of creating beautiful and well-designed interfaces.
A new plugin framework that will let everyone to play with it to connect plugins between them and easily customize some parts of the dashboard. It will also provide a new wave of built-in APIs to update the menu, the configurations and the design of your project.
Extensibility is the key.
Both of this piece of software will be officially released at the end of March/beginning of April.
From alpha to stable version
Currently, Strapi is still in alpha version. Even if it is used by thousands of companies in production, this flag can be alarming for business projects. Releasing a stable version is one of our highest priorities. We plan to release the Beta version in April and the stable one in August.
Also, a lot of features are coming through the year:
- Content Internationalization
- Admin & Permissions
- WYSWYG HTML Editor
- Automatic project update
- Media Library
Take a look at the roadmap for more details.
We want to you to be happy from the moment you discover Strapi to your usage in production. Everything should be super smooth.
Making our users more satisfied is our obsession.
To make it happen, we are going to improve the onboarding process: demo, installation, guided tour, etc. The documentation will be improved to make it more straightforward. Last but not least, we will also offer many tutorials to guide you through every step and to illustrate best practices, patterns, and best practices.
Tell us in the comments what you would like!
Thank you to all - users, contributors, followers, ambassadors, partners - for being part of this fantastic journey!
We wish you a happy, amazing and new year! 🥰
Did we forget anything you would like for this new year? Give us some insights in the comments section.