It was a busy year for Parkjets in 2012 so we thought it would be a good idea to put everything in a nice little capsule so our visitors can see what happened over the last 12 months and hopefully look forward to the next 12 months! Now, this is the one time of the year we want your input, so be sure to add your comments, we want to hear from you - what you want to see in Parkjets in 2013 (more after the break).
More Plans - The biggest improvement to Parkjets.com over the last year has certainly been in the number of plans we have added to the Free Plans page. In fact, when 2011 ended, we were right at 98 plans available for download. And that's nothing to shake a stick at either. But we set out to try to add 2 plans a month for the next 12 months and we came pretty darn close. In fact, with the latest additions, we just racked up the total to 118 plans, a full increase of 20 plans for you to enjoy and download. In case you missed it, here is the quick summary:
- Firefly "Serenity"
- B-58 Hustler
- F-95 Morningstar
- T-50 PAK-FA
- F/A-241 Shrike
- Cylon Raider
- Cargo Twin
- F4F Wildcat
- Alpha Jet
- EADS Barracuda
- SU-47 Berkut
Honestly, we thought we had added in way more plans, but adding in 20 new plans isn't too bad either. It just takes time to get all these plans dialed up and posted. But we did fall short of our goal of 24 for 2012.
Interviews - We also undertook a new project to start interviewing designers and RC companies out there to see if we can squeeze out a little more information and insight from them on their designs and the way they have set up their business. With RC being a great part time hobby/job, there are lots of small garage companies and we are reaching out to more folks right now for more interviews. Want an overview of the interviews we conducted in 2012, here you go:
Sponsorship - In 2012 we had a goal of gaining at least one prime sponsor for the website and 6mmFlyRC came through and delivered. We discussed it in our interview with 6mmFlyRC, but needless to say, their sponsorship allows us to keep the lights on and lets us focus adding great content to the site without worrying about bandwidth or internet hosting charges. With all the downloading that takes place on Parkjets on a daily basis, sometimes it can get expensive. Do yourself a favor and visit them and pick up a laser cut kit or motor, every customer matters.
Traffic - Our traffic has been increasing steadily since the start of 2012. In fact, in 2012 we had 2.5 million page views from 305,000 unique visitors from all around the world. Our top referrers (where visitors come from) include hobby forums like RC Groups, but also include forums from Thailand, Russia, Italy, France, Germany, and South America. We also have many folks linking to us in social networks like Facebook and Twitter. And we have seen our newsletter subscriber list increase nearly 20% over 2011.
Endorsements - This year we also took a small step and endorsed the RC Powers E-Guide for folks wanting to know about electric flight and park flyers in general. It's a great course for beginners and even those that have some flight time under their belt. If you are new to the hobby or maybe you are just looking to get a complete picture of e-flight and the parkjet revolution, we highly recommend the guide. It's money well spent. But we are in the middle of doing a full review for you, so if you are on the fence, just hold on, we'll give you the complete run down in a few weeks.
2013 Goals - So this brings us all to our goals for 2013. What do we want to do on Parkjets to help become the #1 place on the internet for plans and advice for parkjets and park flyers? Well, we are not sure just yet but here is what we do know.
- We want to add more plans. Our goal for 2013 is to add an additional 36 plans over 12 months. That means we will be searching high and low for those plans that have everything you need to build them including photos and videos, complete plans and specifications. We will continue to reach out to do more interviews with those in the RC community that are making things happen.
- We want to become a better resource for visitors and engage people more. We just don't know what the best way to do it might be. Is that a forum? Is that a social media push? Do we work to extend ourselves with more foreign language resources? It's hard to say.
- We want to make our newsletter a better resource for our subscribers and are working hard on doing that as well. But we are satisfied with our current offering.
That pretty much wraps up the year for Parkjets. We would love to hear from you in the comments section about what you liked best, what you want to see, and what you don't want to see in 2013 for Parkjets. All constructive criticism is appreciated!
Lastly we want to thank everyone for a tremendous year and for keeping Parkjets in your internet browser! Blue skies everyone!