Behind the Make: Hey Meta
In January, maker Igor Stumberger launched his latest make Hey Meta with a simple post over at Designer News and since then has been upvoted over 1,200 times at Product Hunt and surpassed one of his first milestones of over 10,000 visitors to the website.
Igor was nice enough to take some time out of his busy schedule to give us a little more in-depth look at how the make process behind Hey Meta went and how it progressed from idea to launch to today.
In 100 words or less, what exactly is Hey Meta?
Hey Meta is a tool that lets you check how your website will look like when other people share it on social media. The tool checks meta tags of the webpage and displays it in a simple social card preview. If some meta tags are missing, the tool enables you to add them, but also edit the existing ones. And the best thing, once you’ve edited the tags as you like them, you can generate a code, which you can insert in your website.
How did you come up with the idea for Hey Meta?
Every time I made a website in the past I’ve always had to search for which meta tags I should include to make it “share worthy”. Then every time I changed something I had to go to either Facebook or Twitter and test if it is displayed the way I want.
At one point I just decided to make a simple page for myself so I can test it out and when it worked, I just put it out there for everyone to use.
How did you go about building the first version of Hey Meta?
First I researched which tags I would need to include. Then I had to figure out how to parse a website and “extract” the tags so I could check if the ones I need/want exist. When I had that, I just had to style the website and display the relevant information.
Did you run into any challenges along the way in building Hey Meta?
This was my first project with Node.js, so I learned what I needed along the way 😊
How did Hey Meta’s launch day go?
It went really well. I first posted it on Product Hunt and Designer News. There I got a bit of feedback that some of the things that weren’t working properly so I changed the stuff on the fly. It was even the most upvoted product on PH that day which was pretty sweet. All in all, this is more than a successful side project launch by my standards 😊
Looking back at launch day, would you do anything different?
Nothing much I guess. There are always features I could add, but keeping it simple made the difference I guess. And if I would be adding more stuff in, I wouldn’t be finished by the time I was.
What are some milestones that Hey Meta has hit since launch that blow your mind?
The first milestone was a mental one when I decided that it was good enough to put in front of the world. This was the biggest one I guess. The other was the first 10k people that visited, which took me a bit by surprise, since it’s kinda a niche product. The last one is still ongoing, as people are still using the tool every day, which I take as a validation that something like that was needed (if only by a specific audience).
Now that you have officially launched Hey Meta, what are some short term goals you are working towards?
I’m slowly fixing some of the bugs that are still in the code. After that, I’ll work on adding some additional functionality and try to develop a browser plugin for quick checks.
What is one website or resource you used during making Hey Meta that made the process 100 times easier?
A the time I was doing a Node.js course on Treehouse, which helped a lot, but quite honestly, and I’m not ashamed to admit that it was StackOverflow 😅… I know I know, but there are so many experienced developers on there that have already figured out stuff you’re stuck with that it would be a shame if the knowledge would go to waste.
Other than Hey Meta, have you launched any other projects?
I’ve built two simple iOS apps and some websites, but they didn’t really take off and are offline now. I am however building a mindfulness app at the moment, but it still needs some time and love before I can share it with anybody 😊
Thank you again Igor for taking the time for interview and giving us a little more background to Hey Meta.
If you’d like to learn more about Hey Meta see the links below.
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