March 1st was a difficult time for a lot of us. Sure, we had a month to prepare for the end of Emptees, but it just didn’t seem like it was going to happen at the time. For those of you who didn’t get to enjoy the Emptees, it was the definitive t-shirt hangout on the Internet. Earlier this year, seemingly out of nowhere, Indie Labs (the parent company of Emptees) announced at the beginning of February that the last day of Emptees was going to be on February 28, 2011. They felt it was the best decision for their company to focus solely on Big Cartel, (whom the company is now named after, no longer Indie Labs) their easy online ecommerce solution.
In retrospect, a month’s notice was more than fair, but at the time it left t-shirt lovers scrambling to find a substitute. There was even a separate forum created to discuss the potential options for a suitable alternative and Twitter was abuzz with ideas being kicked around for the replacement. Soon thereafter, two clear cut winners emerged in Mintees and BandJob. Fast forward five months and it is clear to see that Mintees has become an new and improved duplicate of the old Emptees stomping grounds. *Side note – Much respect to BandJob but their overall goal was not to be an Emptees replacement or even be similar. BandJob’s name was thrown into the ring because it’s an exceptional site and a great place for t-shirt designers to kick it. They serve a specific niche that is slightly different than Emptees demographic and do it very well.
Mintees was created as a collaboration by Rob Dobi and Akt Enterprises in about a month’s time. One of the biggest growth factors from the outset was the easy option to sign up and transfer your existing account from Emptees so you didn’t have to start from scratch. The time frame for the site’s development was hurried because the window of opportunity was closing fast. However, you would never know that by looking at the site or using it because the launch was well received and the bugs were minimal. There have been a few added features in comparison to Emptees but overall the site’s functionality is very much the same.
In the five months Mintees has been live, it has had to act like a site that has been running for five years. Lets take a look at a few of the metrics we can glean from Mintees’ category filters to get an idea of the user growth and interaction.
Stats as of 08/18/2011
Users: Roughly 6,000 with 150 Pages at 40 Users Per Page
Active Users: Roughly 5,760 with 144 Pages at 40 Users Per Page
Designs On Site: 494 Pages at 40 Designs Per Page for almost 20,000 designs
Most Tees Designed: Greg Abbott at 884 Tee Designed
Most Tees Loved: QuakerNinja at 18,272 Tees Liked
Most Posts: Kyle Crawford at 755 Threads
Most Viewed: Nicolo Nimor
Most Comments: QuakerNinja at 13,477 Comments
Most Viewed Article: How I Made $7500 in 3 Months with My Art by Jimiyo
The more I looked into the posts and designs, I noticed much of Emptees original content had been ported over based on the level of interaction and the timestamps associated with the titles. This is very comforting to see because it means that not all was lost in the move. One of my biggest concerns during the looming shutdown was what would happen to the resources and content that has educated those seeking t-shirt knowledge. Apparently, it didn’t go to waste and found a good home.
If you haven’t visited Mintees yet, check it out. If the historical data is any indication of the what is to come….then the future is bright.