All good things must come to an end, right?
FlipQuiz started in March of 2014. I had tried to create a “Jeopardy for Teachers” some years before that, but it wasn’t something teachers could manage themselves. This was crucial for widespread adoption.
After having worked with Drupal for a few years, I decided to give this idea another try – at least for Lisa. I wanted to build something she could log into, edit, and play in the classroom. As I got closer to a working prototype, I began to wonder if it was something that I could make available to ALL teachers. I mean, the “login to create and edit content” functionality was already there, so why not open that up to others?
I started to build this product into something that looked great (at the time) and could handle other teacher logins and content. The first version looked something like this:
With Lisa’s help posting the link on Edmodo, it quickly became a hit! (At one point, it even had steady 100k+ per month user visits!) There were numerous social media posts talking about FlipQuiz, YouTube videos created by others showing people how to get started, and it made several “Educator Top 10” lists.
During this time, I really wanted it to succeed and heavily marketed it with email blasts, social posts/contests, swag, and a refreshed theme. Here are just a few of the goodies created over the years…
Then, in Summer 2018, (after some issues with the sustainability of the Drupal site) I decided to convert the site from Drupal to WordPress – with a URL update from FlipQuiz.me to FlipQuiz.com. Well, not really convert, but completely re-build. I thought it looked and worked really well, but having 2 sites (the Drupal one was rebranded FlipQuiz Classic and remained at FlipQuiz.me) proved to be confusing for most people. PRO benefits didn’t transfer from one to the other (for technical reasons) and boards didn’t transfer either.
I didn’t know it at the time, but this may have been the kiss of death without me realizing it.
The new site looked like this:
Fast forward to Summer 2019 and the site is coming to an end. For reasons due to time and the priority of my full-time job at Thrive, I just can’t support the site any more.
It’s bittersweet, but it’s time.
Without a doubt, this project (read: journey) has been one of the greatest learning experiences I’ve had in my career. Since 2014, I started a side project that I had full control over, started a business around it, learned how to market it through social media and email, learned how to talk to t-shirt and print companies to create marketing materials, figured out how to manage a complete site rebuild on 2 different platforms, and found out just how demanding customer support can be for this kind of thing.
FlipQuiz has been a great ride. Here are some of the things I’ve learned:
- Starting a business is fairly easy, maintaining it is hard.
- Business finances can be really hard – make sure you do it right from the start.
- It’s easy to get swept up emotionally in a project that’s doing well.
- It’s hard to commit time to a project that has plateaued.
- I should have called it quits before now, but obligation kept the site alive.
- There are real people on the other end of the screen that I am letting down.
- God has a plan for this, too.
If you’re reading this and you used FlipQuiz, thank you so much! You are why I didn’t want to give it up. I appreciate all of your emails, social posts, and encouraging words. Also, I’m sorry that I had to shut FlipQuiz down, but it was necessary.
Because all good things must come to an end.