Growth takes off after domain upgrade.
During a global pandemic that has seen travel restrictions and lockdowns affect vast swathes of the workforce, companies were forced to transition to online meetings. While spending most of the day in Zoom meetings is a common problem, scheduling them in the first place can take time, with a multi-email back and forth to work out a suitable meeting time.
Dedicated scheduling services such as Calendly have thrived from the desire to make arranging a meeting a much easier process. At the beginning of 2021, Calendly revealed a monthly active user count of 10 million and announced a $350 million funding round, valuing the company at $3 billion.
Competing with the powerhouse that is Calendly is an uphill battle. However, it’s a battle that one young company is waging. To stand out from the crowd, it has branded around the supreme domain, Cal.com.
Launched as Calendso in 2021, this San Francisco-based company describes itself as “the open-source Calendly alternative.” It gained early popularity, earning the title of “product of the month” for April 2021 at Product Hunt.
Just five months after its original product launch, Calendso rebranded to Cal.com, a highly sought-after domain name that the company didn’t think it would get. Notably, Cal.com is the company’s brand name and its domain name, fully leveraging the power of the domain.
At the time of Calendso’s rebrand to Cal.com, the company’s co-founder, Peer Richelsen, noted,
After several months of brand exercises, research and negotiations with domain owners, we were lucky to come to terms with the previous owners of Cal.com. […] It’s a blessing to be able to call this domain our new home on the web, even though the chances were slim.
While no information about the acquisition price of Cal.com has been shared, it’s safe to say that the rebrand has helped the company to grow quickly. Earlier this year, Andrew interviewed the founder of Calendar.com, who noted that the domain name has been critical to its success.
Since Cal.com is an open startup, meaning that it shares salaries and core metrics, we can see exactly what effect the rebrand had. According to its open startup page, Cal.com had 491 weekly users between September 13th and September 19th, 2021, the week that it announced the rebrand.
By the beginning of December 2021, Cal.com recorded 12,021 weekly active users. Its cumulative customer count has also just passed a significant milestone, breaking the 10,000 customer count at the end of 2021. In comparison, Cal.com had a customer count of just 221 before its rebrand in September 2021.
Building on this success, Cal.com announced that it raised $7.4 million in funding led by Joseph Jacks from OSS Capital. Rebranding to Cal.com has undoubtedly helped this company become a leading Calendly alternative.