The last month has been a very exciting time for Step for those who have been following along our socials and discord. The most important announcement of late has been our acquisition of Solanafloor and how that plays into the future of both the Step and Solanafloor platforms. We also have deployed a number of important updates including speeding up load times on the dashboard, new swap page design and routes, many bug fixes and a few integrations like the new Star Atlas marketplace. Lets get into the latest developments and what lies ahead for Step in todays update!
Acquisition of Solanafloor
Step was delighted to announce on the 28 July that we have completed an acquisition of Solana’s leading NFT data insights and analytics platform, Solanafloor (Coindesk article). This greatly strengthens the Step product offering and we also onboard the excellent Solanafloor team including the founder and creator of Solanafloor cryptowazza.
NFTs have clearly been one of the most important growth areas for the Solana ecosystem over the last 12 months. In a time where there has been a massive drawdown in the crypto market as a whole and particularly defi, NFTs have shown strong continued growth as evidenced in the recent Step Data Insights newsletter post with a comparison of Opensea vs Magic Eden. Active Solana NFT users transact on average 7.65 a day compared to the equivalent 1.87 on Opensea on Ethereum and for many people NFTs are their first window into the crypto ecosystem. Given this, NFTs have become part of most personal portfolios and its been important for Step to stay ahead of the curve here, this is why we have a dedicated module on Step for NFTs called the NFT Gallery sourcing pricing and metadata from multiple marketplaces and displaying the most accurate dataset available.
As a customer initially of Solanafloor’s API for pricing data on NFTs, we eventually concluded a deal utilising the Step Data Fund we set aside earlier in the year for such things. The fit seemed very natural, Solanafloor is the #1 place on Solana for NFT data insights and analytics and Step is the #1 portfolio dashboard and bringing to market a DeFi focused data analytics product. We needed to bring NFT expertise in house and there is no better expertise than cryptowazza and Solanafloor. The NFT and DeFi ecosystems are surprisingly separated, different platforms, different influencers, often with very little crossover. This acquisition helps Step get a foot in the door with many of the existing and future Solanafloor client projects and community and we are excited to be continuing to build the Solanafloor product and brand out more.
Future NFT Products
Solanafloor has an existing brand, dedicated Pro user base and paying project customers. This is something awesome we want to foster and grow with the larger resources available at Step. That means more projects being listed and indexed, more metrics to track and growing the Solanafloor team at Step. The current plan is the new analytics product at Step we are developing will start with a focus on blockchain and DeFi data and only once that is built out would we consider moving over the NFT insights from Solanafloor into the Step product.
We think Solanafloor has an excellent brand that could be utilised to great effect in being a neutral meeting point for a lot of NFT communities and provide a lot of reference material for discussions there. To that end we envision Solanafloor having more media related offerings in the form of written guides and content, videos, podcasts more tailored towards increasing exposure for NFT products to the crowd of potential users who visit Solanafloor daily for insights.
Step Hiring and Recent Updates
We also are delighted to onboard our new QA manager @caffineHelps who you may see hanging out in discord these days, be sure to say hi! This will helps us continue to deliver high quality products each release as I think we are probably one of the few projects in Solana with any QA at all. In general we are always happy to discuss with anyone who is a good fit and can bring value to the Step team.
Earlier in the week we deployed another big update including fixes for Swaps page which now shows potential swap routes via Jupiter, new Star Atlas marketplace support and a new notifications system plus many more bug fixes. We are noticing our deployments these days are less frequent but with a larger amount of line items, often 20 or so items going out in a release. While we want to improve the frequency of updates we don’t want to sacrifice proper QA to achieve that so we will monitor how things go however on the whole a lot is being done every week behind the scenes.