Reflecting on a year of support for businesses and organizers
As the Withfriends team celebrated at a safe distance, with team members now on both coasts, we hit some milestones we really wanted to share with all of you; the business owners and community organizers, the loyal customers and dedicated members, and everyone who has been following us in this journey.
At the close of 2020, Withfriends has made $3.3m in sustainable revenue possible at a time when support for small businesses and community organizations throughout the United States has never been more critical.
With roots in the arts and music world, Withfriends began 2020 with a decision to focus on expanding our features to serve retail businesses throughout the country in addition to the music venues and arts organizations we started with. As in-person events ground to a halt in March, we began to see an outpouring of support, and this continued throughout the year. As business models shifted online, our Shopify and Square integrations made it possible for every customer to support businesses they cared about, just as they did with our event integrations. This meant bookstores, record stores, coffeeshops, musicians, and many more essential businesses to our cultural landscape could find support at a difficult time. You can explore the 1500 businesses working with us in 2020 here.
Most transformative, though, is the amount of money spent by each member on Withfriends. At the close of 2020, that number is $12. The reason is that we launched a whole new infrastructure for subscription benefits, making it easy for any business to ship products weekly, monthly, or quarterly to their biggest fans. Now businesses are running book clubs, curating record collections, sharing test batches of new products. As every retail business became an ecommerce business, we made it simple to make that transition, and customers rewarded those that made the switch. The average amount of money spent per member with subscription benefits was $30! Compared to a platform like Patreon, whose average is $7, we’ve discovered something that more than triples that value.
Lastly, we closed out the year with 6775 active members, and another 5,200 who supported the businesses with a donation or tip in 2020. With many businesses closed indefinitely, and community members feeling the strain, many lower tier members had to cancel their memberships as they themselves faced an uncertain future. But as highlighted above, people changed their relationship with the businesses they loved, and in many ways, became more committed, spent more money, and received more throughout the year as higher tier members. As occurred in so many parts of our society, the circle around each business became tighter and more resilient as the most loyal supporters moved to the forefront.
We’re excited about what 2021 has to offer. Our team has grown, our platform has become significantly more powerful, and the membership programs supporting the small businesses that inspire us continue to grow more valuable.
If you have any questions about this article, we’d love to hear from you! Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, and while you’re at it get started setting up your own membership program. We’d love to hear what you think.
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Withfriends makes it easy to sell memberships for any business. Whether you run an online e-commerce store, a music venue, or a brick-and-mortar bookstore, you can use Withfriends to build sustainable recurring revenue for your business or organization.