2015 in Review

It’s that time of year again when many of us reflect on the past 12 months, learn and grow from each mistake, and take those lessons with us into the new year.

I always find it interesting to read these end of the year blog posts because it’s a reminder that we all have a different journey, our own set of struggles and goals for the year ahead.

If you’ve got a blog post of your own, feel free to share with us via Twitter!

So without further ado, here’s what the past year has looked like for ThemeBoy.

We Released the Rookie Theme

As promised, we released the first free SportsPress theme on WordPress.org in April 2015. We were hoping to get Rookie out to you sooner, but we learned from our first submission to the theme directory that it’s a long process, and you need to be patient.

At any given time, there’s a long queue of themes waiting to be approved into the directory. If you’re curious, the whole process, from the initial submission to approval, took about 4 months. In comparison, our plugins were all approved almost instantly. I’m still wondering why themes take so much longer than plugins. If anyone knows the answer please let me know :)

I’m going to say it again, patience is the key. Well, to your sanity at least. My advice to anyone considering submitting their theme to the repo is to submit it and let it be. We spent so much time checking back, looking at the queue, trying to make an educated guess as to when it would be approved so we could answer our users who were waiting for this free theme to become available.

Once you’ve submitted the theme, just let it be. It’s in the hands of the Theme Review team now. The day your theme is approved will come, and it will be glorious. I promise.

If you’re thinking about starting your own sports club website or blog, get started today by downloading the free Rookie theme!

New Plugin Insights

Thanks to the WordPress.org meta team, we now know not only the download count of our plugins, but the number of active installs!

This has been something we’ve been dying to know ever since we launched our first plugin, and I’m sure many other plugin authors can relate to this.

Knowing that your user base is growing is a great motivator and healthy indication you’re doing something great for the WordPress community.

In last year’s 2014 in Review post, we were at 33,000 downloads of SportsPress. Today, we’ve reached over 109,000 downloads with 9,000+ active installs. For a niche plugin, we think that’s pretty impressive.

ThemeBoy × SportsPress Pro

We announced A New Era of ThemeBoy & SportsPress, where we merged our two sites, ThemeBoy.com and SportsPressPro.com. Rather than going to two separate sites, we figured it would be better if you guys could find everything you need to build a sports club website under one roof.


In July, Greg Munson, the co-founder of the hit TV show BattleBots came to us hoping we could help him set up his brackets for their upcoming tournament. As childhood fan, our lead developer Brian was thrilled for this opportunity to interview him.

If you don’t know what BattleBots is, imagine a combat-style elimination tournament with some of the world’s best robot engineers together in an arena with their remote-controlled armed and armored fighting machines. Lots of spinning blades, sparks, flames and explosions in this sport.

Don’t believe me? Check out this epic video:


After a 13 year hiatus, BattleBots is back on the air with ABC and they’re using SportsPress Pro to power their official tournament brackets!

SportsPress Extensions

In September, we released a series of SportsPress extensions for specific sports – Football (Soccer), Cricket, and Golf. These are the first 3 that we’ve released, and they certainly won’t be the last.

Do you want us to make one for your sport? Let us know!

WordCamp Tokyo

The stars aligned and Brian and I were lucky enough to attend WordCamp Tokyo 2015 on Halloween. I was blown away by how organized the event was with all of the sponsor booths and WordPress merch. Seriously, great job guys!

The day was full of presentations, sponsor booth tours, prizes, and many heated rounds of WordPress karuta on Japanese tatami mats.

We also ran into Takayuki Miyoshi, the developer of Contact Form 7, and Mika Epstein, a well-known plugin referee on WordPress.org. Putting names to faces of people you’ve only met online is what makes these events so special. It’s also a reminder that WordPress is all about the people who drive this community to accomplish great things . You really never know who you will meet at the next WordCamp!

And last but not least:

What would WordCamp in Japan be without a picture with Wapuu?

Video Tutorials on YouTube

Last year, we promised you guys that we’ll start publishing videos to help you understand how to use SportsPress and build your sports club websites.

Our library now has a total of 50 videos and we’ll be releasing more this year.

If you haven’t already, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel!

WordCamp US

The ThemeBoy team attended the inaugural WordCamp US in Philadelphia live streaming from Australia. Even though I was not physically there, I could sense a different energy around this WordCamp. Rightfully so, WCUS was a big freaking deal! It was the largest WordCamp ever with over 1,800 attendees plus another 800 of us around the world watching the live stream.

Philadelphia’s Councilman, David Oh, officially declared December 5th as WordPress day in Philly. How cool is that? WordCamp US 2016 will be held at the same Pennsylvania Convention Center on December 2nd-4th, and tickets are already on sale.

WordPress Growth

On November 8th, Matt announced on his blog that WordPress now has 25% market share of the web. That’s right, 1 out of every 4 websites!

I just checked the W3Tech break down of  popular content management systems and the growth of WordPress over the past 5 years is impressive. WordPress is the fastest growing CMS and holds a larger market share than any other system by a long shot.

2015 was a great year for WordPress, and I think we’ll continue to see growth in 2016.

What to Expect from ThemeBoy in 2016

ThemeBoy’s mission has always been to bring you the best WordPress tools to help you build professional websites for your sports teams, clubs, and leagues. SportsPress turned 1 last year, and our community has grown to well over 9,000 users.

This year, we want to focus on developing new SportsPress Pro modules, themes, more sports specific extensions, and more video tutorials to help you create your sites.

But let’s dive in deeper.

Tell me about you, how exactly can we help you this year?

Help us understand how we can help you this year by participating in the 2016 SportsPress survey.

Your answers will help us figure out where to focus our energy and develop the tools to help you build great websites.

Thank you for being a fan and supporting our operations here at ThemeBoy. Get ready to tackle 2016 and all that it has to offer. On behalf of the team, we wish you the best in 2016! Here’s to another awesome year!

Stay in the loop

Enjoy this article? Get more content like this directly in your inbox.

Take your club to the next level

Already have a theme? SportsPress Pro adds advanced sports features to any WordPress site, and works perfectly together with any of our themes.