Gatsby Raises 28M Series B to Become How the Web is Built

Kyle Mathews
May 27th, 2020

Today we’re thrilled to announce we’ve secured $28 million in Series B funding led by Index Ventures and joined by earlier investors, CRV and Trinity Ventures. This investment will propel Gatsby’s next stage of innovation and evolution toward becoming how the web is built.

Websites today are being made the same way they were 20 years ago, with a cumbersome monolithic approach to building sites, storing data, and delivering content. Since then we’ve seen massive shifts to technologies like cloud computing and modern JavaScript. So why are so many sites still being built like it’s 1998, using an architecture that practically guarantees they’ll be slow, insecure, and expensive to scale?

It’s time for a new way to build the web.

Building faster, building better

Gatsby was designed from the very beginning as a decoupled architecture for building websites by quickly and seamlessly gluing together modular best-fit services. Acting as the orchestration layer, Gatsby lets developers access the most productive and powerful technologies and practices currently available — tools like Git, React, and GraphQL for hyper-efficient API-propelled data exchange to create websites and apps that can run anywhere. Gatsby sites are inherently secure (no servers and no database equals almost no attack surface), instantly scalable, and performant out of the box.

We’re also revolutionizing the build process. Gatsby empowers front end developers to harness powerful methodologies like continuous deployment to build and iterate quickly, getting sites and features in front of users fast. Gatsby’s open source framework is endlessly flexible and extensible, thanks to our enormous plugin ecosystem — over 2000 plugins and growing daily. Since Gatsby sites are faster to build and easier to change, experimentation becomes easy and low cost, opening the door to continuous innovation.

Our developer community is growing over 10 percent month-over-month, and over 200,000 sites on GitHub alone have been built with Gatsby. Online academies like Udemy are reporting that Gatsby is among the most popular emerging tech skills professionals are looking to learn. And devs are using these skills to build some seriously cool projects, both personal and professional. Visually driven sites like Spotify.Design have come to Gatsby for blazing fast page loads on image-rich pages, while Little Caesars, the third largest pizza delivery chain in the world, chose Gatsby to make sure hungry customers enjoy the fastest possible ordering experience.

The road to 1000x faster

From the start, Gatsby was designed for building sites and apps that would be fast no matter where they run. After five years of refining Gatsby’s open source framework, that goal has largely been satisfied…though we will of course continue working to capture every last possible microsecond of performance gain while helping teams make smart performance decisions.

Page speed performance is a key metric for us in delivering an unparalleled shopping experience. Using Gatsby has allowed us to increase our page performance by 5-10x — an exponential improvement not only for our customers, but for our team too. — Jeff Gnatek, Head of engineering, ButcherBox

To take these performance gains to the next level we launched Gatsby Cloud, specialized cloud infrastructure built for teams who want their Gatsby sites functioning at full potential. With features like real-time previews, seamless deployments, and parallelized builds, Gatsby Cloud grants serious velocity for both developers and content creators.

This speed is powered by Gatsby Cloud’s newest feature: Incremental Builds. Long build times have long been a major problem for static sites, but using Incremental Builds we are showing site build speeds reliably under 10 seconds for content changes and data edits. This is oftentimes a 1000x improvement over existing build solutions, where the entire site must be re-built for even the smallest data change. Incremental Builds represent a true paradigm shift in the world of static websites, and they’re available only in Gatsby Cloud.

Speed achieved, we now turn our eyes to a new goal for the coming five years: Having made Gatsby 1000x faster, now we want to make Gatsby 1000x easier to use.

Becoming 1000x easier and built for everyone

Gatsby’s mission is simple: to create a better web for everyone — developers, content creators, marketers, designers, and end users. There’s a lot to consider in how we make Gatsby 1000x easier to use, but we believe collaborative workflows, easy administration, and extending Gatsby’s comfort level for marketers, designers, and content creators are key in getting there.

Collaboration

One of Gatsby’s best features for collaboration is Preview. Gatsby Preview lets teams view changes immediately and in context of the entire site, generating an instant preview environment shareable with clients and coworkers. While this powerful collaborative tool is available in Gatsby Open Source through setting up your own server, Gatsby Cloud provides a managed Preview server. This means teams can collaborate seamlessly, with content editors working in their preferred CMS while devs are down in the code, everyone making sure their changes work in real-time before deploying to production. At Gatsby, our marketing team regularly pushes content updates from Contentful while development teams are simultaneously deploying updates from GitHub. Everyone’s preferred workflows are preserved, and it just works.

And so it’s particularly exciting that we have first-class integrations for both WordPress and Drupal currently under development. Our goal at Gatsby is to empower users of these popular content management solutions to do the same things they do now, only better (and way, way faster). We believe that combining Gatsby with WordPress lets users own and manage their data in a comfortable way while still taking advantage of modern JavaScript ecosystem and tooling, plus the performance superpowers of running a Gatsby site on Gatsby Cloud with Incremental Builds for content and data changes. First-class support for inclusive, collaborative workflows like these, and others, is something we’ll be continually expanding in both Gatsby Open Source and Gatsby Cloud.

We also just launched Willit.build, a website providing the first — and only — publicly available static site benchmarking service. A fully open source project, Will It Build demonstrates the progress of build times for a range of sample Gatsby benchmark sites on Gatsby Cloud. For example, we show an 8k page site running with our experimental WordPress plugin is building in 6 seconds!

Easy administration

Gatsby needs to be easy to use, no matter where you’re starting from. Gatsby can do an incredible number of things thanks to an ecosystem of thousands of plugins and themes. With this incredible variety, though, comes the challenge of discovering how exactly to go about executing your choices. Gatsby’s vast documentation can answer almost any question, and also we’ve already mapped out many of the workflows you can do with Gatsby. Now, what if you could just tell Gatsby what it is you want to do, and voilà! A few clicks later, Gatsby gets it all set up and running for you. We’ve released an experimental version of this as Gatsby Recipes — a user-friendly infrastructure-as-code inspired approach we’re developing with the community.

No matter what that future looks like, though, we will also continue to double down on improving our developer experience for those already comfortable administering Gatsby from the command line.

Access for all

Ultimately, we want to make Gatsby usable for everyone — we want all Gatsby users to feel like you belong here.

This includes things like providing built-in support for features like accessible routing and regularly sharing best practices on accessibility with the community. It also means expanding our support for other languages through localizing our documentation, an effort that now has over 340 contributors across 22 languages working together.

Making Gatsby available to everyone also means including users who aren’t as comfortable on the command line or with code. That is why we are working towards a low-code (or even eventually no-code) approach to Gatsby, including exploring GUI-based features like a Desktop app and other visual interfaces like Admin and Blocks UI. The possibilities of where we can take this are endless, and we’re looking forward to working with the community to define what an equally eloquent and powerful low-code experience will look like for the web.

Open Source at our Core

One thing that remains unchanged since Day Zero is our commitment to open source. Our prime directive as an organization is to continue to grow Gatsby as an incredibly healthy and vibrant ecosystem. Here is where we are in the journey:

Let’s build together

Community got us here. Gatsby’s open source community has invested its endless creativity into creating plugins, Gatsby Themes, and new Gatsby Recipes to evolve and extend what’s possible for devs to build with Gatsby.

At the same time, developers don’t work alone: Creating and maintaining a website and its content is the work of many hands. Gatsby enables collaboration through an approach we call the content mesh, so content creators, editors, designers and marketers can work with their favorite tools. Gatsby’s integrations with CMSs like WordPress, Contentful, and Drupal mean that developers can build modern websites while preserving their content creators’ specialized workflows.

The web is an incredible medium. Anyone, anywhere can produce a site and ship their ideas to the world. We’re committed to making Gatsby the way to build on the web — for everyone.. Security, performance, accessibility, and access to the tools and workflows you prefer should be the default for how the web is built, not afterthoughts.

Here’s to the next phase of Gatsby!

Curious what else is coming soon? Join us at Virtual Gatsby Days next week! Our opening keynote will feature all of our new product announcements. Our free, first-ever virtual conference will also feature lightning talks from Gatsby team members previewing the upcoming products and features we’re shipping.

Kyle Mathews
Written by
Kyle Mathews

Founder @ GatsbyJS. Likes tech, reading/writing, founding things. Blogs at bricolage.io.

Follow Kyle Mathews on Twitter

Tagged with announcements, gatsby-cloud, incremental-builds, performance, willitbuildView all Tags
© 2020 Gatsby, Inc.