If you work online, you may have heard of 37Signals. Once a small website design firm and software developer specializing in collaborative tools for the web, this innovative company has grown into one of the greatest examples of 21st century business in the digital world. 37Signals was originally a website design studio, creating websites for major online retailers like Shopping.com. As the company’s client list grew longer and longer, its ability to serve clients through traditional project management channels shrunk and it focused on creating innovative solutions to its own problems as a business.
Basecamp was born out of this frustration with online business management. A full-featured application for online businesses and service providers looking to manage their own projects, the app included to-do lists, collaborative chat and management features, as well as a whole host of other perfect features for online businesses.
The application was a success, and its sales allowed 37Signals to shift its focus from web design and development to the creation of tools that simplified the process of doing business on the internet. Over the next decade, 37Signals released a range of applications that made life easier for online businesses and their clients alike.
From Campfire, an online chat service for companies looking to communicate with their clients, to Highrise, a simple shared contact list designed to integrate with an assortment of management applications, the company has continued to innovate in ways that make the experience of working on the internet much more enjoyable. It’s this focus on improving an existing framework for work that’s made 37Signals such a unique and powerful success story. While Google and Microsoft took a swing at major changes in the way we do business, 37Signals created small solutions to a range of problems that affect people on the bottom as much as those on the top. The company’s immense success in the online software arena resulted in it being a hot talking point at Internet business conferences. From keynote addresses to new books about the way we do business online, 37Signals has continued to be a major topic of conversation. In 2010, the company released Rework, its guide to running an online business in an innovative, unique, powerful, and successful way.
From small beginnings to extreme levels of success, 37Signals proves that growth on the Internet doesn’t have to come at the cost of user satisfaction. Thrilled by the idea of investing in one of the Internet’s most important businesses, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos recently invested over $10 million in the online company.
Whether you’re a casual Internet user or a dedicated online professional, having a user-friendly Internet instead of a stuffy, profit-focused web is an important thing. Thanks to the innovation of 37Signals’ talented team and the company’s powerful outlook on the world of online business, the Internet is truly a better place. We, as users, should be thankful for the success of modern businesses like 37Signals.