Looking back at 2018

woman wearing headphones leaning against a colorful mural while looking at her phone

It’s hard to believe it’s already 2019, but here we are. 2018 was an incredible year at Mediavine, and we wanted to share some stats with you that begin to explain the magnitude of what’s been happening around here.

Each and every bit of it is thanks to you, our MVPs, and we could not be more thankful every day for the trust you give us with your businesses.

So first and foremost, thank you. Thank you for all the wonderful that 2018 has been, and for all the exciting things 2019 has in store — there will be lots of it! (More on that coming soon!)

Two glasses of champagne sit in front of several more bottles of champagne and a bucket of ice.

We’ve had some crazy changes in 2018. Last year we ended the year with 26 employees. This year we’ve nearly doubled that number — we’re now a team of 51!

Most of our hiring happened in Publisher Support and Engineering — doubling down on our efforts to make sure we’re providing the best support in the industry, and that our tech outpaces anything else out there.

We’ve now got multiple pieces of tech in the patent process, so that you can be sure the ad solutions you find here can’t be found anywhere else — we want them kept exclusive to you.

Even more eyebrow raising, we started 2018 with 2,250 publishers. We’re ending 2018 with more than 4,000!

A teal cupcake with a sparkler candle.

When I think back on 2018, I’m pretty blown away by the things we’ve accomplished together.

2018 saw us do a huge push towards optimization of your site — every bit of public speaking we did, blog posts — Eric’s entire Go for Teal series, has been about helping you understand how your ads work and why optimization makes them work harder for you.

A Google sign made out of circuitboards at their Mountain View, CA campus.

We held our second annual conference at Google’s headquarters in California… just what?! I’m still a little gobsmacked when I think hard about that one.

Together we tackled the mountain that is GDPR, and I like to think we came out on top! We’ve seen great adoption of our custom CMP, and in a lot of cases, average CPM even went up for sites with large amounts of EU traffic. We’re so glad to say that people seem to be opting into custom ads much more than anticipated, keeping earnings high.

Mediavine Pins

Our new revenue share structure has been in place for a solid year now, allowing each of you to shoot for optimization goals with your advertising that then leads to a higher revenue share, in addition to better user engagement and SEO rankings.

In May we joined the Coalition for Better Ads, an association I’m extremely proud of. Ad quality has always been extremely important to Mediavine, SEO and ads even more so.

Being part of the CBA, and upholding CBA standards, is incredibly important to us.

A mural depicting the word "Austin". The letters are filled with various landmarks from Austin, TX, and the capitol building beneath it.

Things didn’t slow down in the summer. We decided we’d host TWO conferences in 2019, in Chicago and Austin, and we held a Facebook Live event every single week, under the loving moniker, “Summer of Live.”

It was so much fun each week watching Jenny coax Eric to talk about his dogs or interview one of our accomplished publishers on the subjects they know best so that we could all benefit.

We covered everything from traffic growth through various sources like Pinterest, to accounting best practices, legal best practices and even affiliate marketing. What a summer!

Entering fall, we launched our inaugural Content Upgrade Challenge and moved from the Summer of Live to Teal Talks every two weeks. We also released our all new payment options, allowing publishers more flexibility than ever before in how they receive their Mediavine earnings – this took exceptional effort by our Publisher Support team, and we are incredibly grateful.

The dashboard was of particular focus throughout this year, receiving its own dedicated engineer and full time development to implement your asks and ours. We’ve released new health check goals, viewing RPM by device type for those number geeks out there, and have lots more coming to get more data into your hands.

Our fabulous engineers saw some pay dirt on their hard work with the release of Script Wrapper 2.0, which allows us to tweak things much more quickly and easily across Mediavine, and that leads to the dolla dolla bills!

Mediavine publishers saw an 11% increase in RPMs in the initial release, without any increase in the number of ads served. That’s some seriously impressive code work, y’all!

October was huge for all of us with the release of Create by Mediavine® — our print card plugin is live and ready for you to install!

Create was a dream of mine back from when I first met Eric, Matt and Steve and began to really understand SEO under their tutelage. Then our publisher engineering team took a rough idea and ran with it — and made it into something that is so much better than any of us ever could have imagined.

I hope that if you haven’t checked it out, you will! We’ve got lots more coming to that plugin soon.

Throughout 2018 we’d been working towards the process of moving under our own comScore implementation, and October also saw us register heavily with that for the first time — becoming a comScore top 70 property out of the gate.

Since then we’ve moved into the 50s, and our slow rollout of getting every Mediavine publisher under our umbrella is not done yet!

2018 was a pretty exciting time for our custom video player. This year we released the “sticky” version of the player that sticks with the reader as they scroll down the desktop page.

More importantly, we released the 2.0 version of our player, allowing us to test and tweak and earn more for every video impression along the way.

We announced Up Next, a feature that allows other videos in your library to automatically play after the current video finishes, leading to more income in our custom video units, like the mobile video adhesion. Big ups to the Platform team for working tirelessly on all these features!

Our Chicago 2019 conference tickets also went on sale, and sold out again, in record time! We’re so excited to be taking you to the Windy City in 2019, and I can tell you — the venues are going to blow. your. mind.

A photograph of the Chicago city skyline.

This brings us to December, and the hits just kept on coming. Eric’s obsession with pagespeed went primetime once again, with the release of Optimizing Ads for Mobile Pagespeed hitting your dashboards.

Google’s Lighthouse speed tests necessitated the rollout, and we’ve doubled, tripled, and quadrupled down on this point — pagespeed is important to your rankings, and it’s not going anywhere. Please pay attention to it!

At the time of this writing we have 4,083 publishers. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, it’s a humbling thing.

When this began, it began with six websites — six women business owners that are personal friends of mine to this day. Our original business plan? Help our friends.

We’re still operating with that goal, we just have a whole lot more friends these days!

Our launch team gets big props for that incredible 4000+ number — they work tirelessly to get you guys onboarded as quickly as possible so that you can start earning money and working on optimizations quickly too. We’re incredibly grateful for their dedication.

Our publisher engineers had another surprise for us in shipping automatic nutrition calculation for Create as a holiday surprise, and we’re loving the easy implementation. We hope you are too!

Platform engineering (the team that does all the work on our ad technology) is not to be outdone, adding Scroll to Play to the holiday gift list — this one allows you to place your video player lower in the post, keeping page load times and SEO top of mind.

We attended what felt like hundreds of conferences and retreats this year, which offered invaluable face to face time with you. That face time allows us to hear your concerns, or offer real time audits, or just hang out, and we’re committed to continuing that into 2019. We wouldn’t miss it for the world!

The Mediavine team.

This very long blog post is kinda crazy, because I’m only hitting the highlights! Seriously though — from all of us at Mediavine, thank you for an incredible year. Working with you provides more joy, fun and satisfaction than you can imagine.

We’re more than ready and truly excited for what 2019 will bring. Here we come!

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