August 24, 2017

What actually goes into making your first dollar from a SaaS project

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    This is why I love this community! We get to experience the journey of others on the same path, watch each other stumble as well as succeed. It also realistically shows the amount of work is required to make things happen online. Thanks for sharing and all the best with Place Card Me!

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    Earning the first dollar is usually more difficult than the next one thousand. And this first dollar is therefore more valuable than all that will come next. I wish you success!

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      never heard that, but here's hoping! thanks for the well wishes! :)

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    Love this post! I'm in a very similar spot to you. Solo founder/developer/marketer/etc doing everything myself. I'm not yet charging for my product ( but will be soon. I honestly can't wait to see that first confirmation of order email in my inbox! Huge congrats for crossing that milestone! :-) my dev/marketing split is probably a bit more in favour of dev so far, but that's slowly but surely changing now the MVP is released and self sustaining.

    Funnily enough, I'm 4 weeks out from my own wedding, and this weekend I will be sorting my own table place cards! I'll ping you an email with my thoughts on your service, given that I'm your target audience and always more than happy to help.

    Have you considered display advertising on the big wedding forums? I'd also consider outreaching to venues themselves and perhaps white labelling your service to them for their customers. Also a free consumer sample could be a good means to acquire leads so long as shipping isn't cost prohibitive - i'd explore that as an option for sure (you could always make it 'for the first 25 people' and stop if you want).

    Keep up the good work. $100 in revenue next! :-)

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      That's a hilarious coincidence you're making place cards this weekend! Definitely let me know how it goes and if you have feedback.

      I'm in conversations with a couple wedding bloggers about display ads. Haven't contacted any forums yet. Unfortunately I just don't have high enough margins to do any advertising cost effectively so have been focused almost exclusively on SEO.

      Outreaching to venues directly is a really good idea - I'll definitely put that on the list.

      Best of luck on letscommence and good luck getting that first order!

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    Hello Cory, Thanks for sharing your story. The site looks great but I was a bit baffled to understand that I need to print the cards on my own. Wouldn't it be better to offer a "Will print it and send it to you overnight" option? It may be costly but profitable for you, as married couples are known to be in a spending mood and the cards are a tiny expense in their entire wedding.

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      This is a good idea and was part of my long term vision for the site, but I haven't gotten around to figuring out how to make that happen. Am definitely hoping to support that workflow sometime in the future and I agree with you that it could be a huge increase in potential revenue because people would be willing to pay a lot for that convenience in that moment.

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    Great post but I think you could generate more sales and earn more if you raised the price to $5 or even $9.99. Why? It might seem illogical but raising the price will make it seem more serious and more valuable. I don't want to go through the trouble of paying $1

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      Thanks! Funnily enough, prices were at $5-$10 for most of the last two months without any sales and I dropped them to $1 a couple weeks ago because I really just wanted that first dollar.

      I had been thinking about this change mostly from a revenue perspective though your point about going through the trouble of paying $1 is pretty interesting. Am hoping to (eventually) raise prices down the road and will be interesting to see how it affects sales.

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        I agree with that. I would give the option of downloading the cards for free - but an option to print them for you + fast shipping for $XX that will create revenue.

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    Hey, thanks a bunch for sharing your experience!

    I didn't know about the book you mentioned (Traction) and the idea of deliberately splitting the time 50/50 on things that will impulse the product and the product itself seems pretty good.

    Keep going!

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      Thanks! Yeah I found that principle to be a really helpful forcing function to work on traction stuff because I always wanted to do like 90% product...

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    Great article! So cool when guys share such experience!👍

    I'm a big fan of SaaS projects! Don't know if I'll ever want to work on something​ but SaaS

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    Do you know from which channel the paid customer discovered the product? How long were they using the product?

    What's the plan to acquire next 10 customers?

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      All these great (and hard) questions!

      I haven't deep dove into my analytics yet, but about 80% of the people who successfully make cards (excepting the recent bump from indie hackers :) ) come from organic search. The possible good news about that is as long as I don't mess anything up and keep trickling out SEO, maybe I can just wait for the next 10?

      I'm pursuing other things as well. Am playing with listing the cards on Etsy, some promotions with wedding bloggers, and probably need to do some more cold outreach at some point...

      Only spending a handful of hours a week on this project at this point so it takes some time to roll these things out!