Get someone else to sell your product for you?

Hi, I’m trying to validate an idea that came to me recently. I’m a developer who loves building apps but is no good at selling them, and I’m sure I’m not alone in this. I would love it if there was a service connecting makers like myself with sales people who could sell subscriptions to my app for a commission fee (a percentage which I specify myself).

Is this a product you’d consider using? Does it already exist?

  1. 3

    Immediately when I read this I thought of Affiliate and Referral programs. But that kind of software is to implement programs, not to run them.

    Many will claim you need to figure out your own sales, learn sales, learn marketing.. etc. But I'm not so sure you HAVE to do that. I'm sure indiehackers here are going to be on the side of "do it all yourself"

    I have looked in the past for not just affiliate software but affiliates. There's another indiehacker (sorry I forget details) that posted a very helpful way to find them. Basically search google for any mention of "affiliate" or any phrases that affiliates use on their blog. Then add your topic in the search. I found some bloggers who do affiliate. I reached out to them to promote and came up with nothing. Just a total waste of time. But I'm intrigued if there was a place I could find motivated people who want my product for free and will write a review on their blog, a walkthrough, will take the time to craft content for the audience and get to share in the upside (commission).

    note; I don't think this was the original post I saw but it's similar in theory: https://www.indiehackers.com/post/using-advanced-google-search-operators-to-find-partners-affiliates-to-promote-your-product-028b43dfdf

    perhaps there's a discovery tool you can build instead of a listing/directory/matching service.

    I think the hardest part of this idea to implement is to convince anyone that using affiliates to do your marketing is worth the time, the effort, the energy, the focus. Is it better than any other marketing channel? It's less scaleable, it's potentially more revenue loss (percent than just cash for ads), and potentially less useful than SEO. There's 10,000 fiverr people helping you with SEO.

    But that might be a good hill to climb and capture some market that wants to take advantage of the growing number of writers, podcasters, newsletter-ers, and social media stars that could potentially get affiliate earnings as incremental income.

    1. 1

      Thanks, this is great feedback. Not sure if I’m going to take this anywhere - as I’ve said elsewhere I’ve not built anything at all yet, and people don’t seem convinced on the idea, but I do appreciate the reply

  2. 2

    This sounds like an affiliate program? Take a look at Rewardful. Obviously a pre-requisite is having a strong product and landing page/site otherwise it'll be challenging to convince affiliates to promote/market your product.

    1. 1

      Thanks, this is exactly the sort of thing I was thinking of

  3. 1

    Hey Chris,

    You are absolutely correct, this is a problem for a lot of people out there. But, my suggestion to you would be. If you are confident in your idea, I think you should find a co-founder who can lead the business side for you, when you pitch it to people out there you will get to know if they are interested in something like that, this will also help you validate your idea when someone joins in your team. So I feel you should find a co-founder.

  4. 1

    I think this is a real problem, especially in the IH community. But I think it's more difficult to solve than it sounds. For instance, most IH project have relatively low subscription prices, so a percentage in that low-priced subscription might not worth the effort.

  5. 1

    If you'd like to validate your idea (and show the proof to the people you'd like to sell your product), you may want to use this course for idea validation https://webdesy.com/validate-product-idea-new-course/ Hope it helps

  6. 1

    Is it a hybrid of channel sales and affiliate?

  7. 1

    I can relate to this. I think the only downside to this is that I would not want to split it with someone else if this was my product that I built.

  8. 1

    Hi Thanks for offering,

    I want to know that how much you will pay as per subscription? Because I'm running an affiliate plumbing network at https://portishead-plumbing.co.uk/ and now I want to know that how much you can offer?

    if it works for me I'll surely start working with you.

    thanks kind regards!

    1. 1

      Thanks for the offer - I had hoped to get a few potentially interested users to run some sort of beta. At the moment I’m thinking the platform would take somewhere between 1-3% of each sale. The seller would receive a percentage specified by whoever wants to sell their product

  9. 1

    I think it could be a great idea if there was a way to accelerate businesses with some kind of limited partnership. Same way crowd funding works. But it won't be enough to just market and sales. You need all the hats of great businesses to be there including product investors sales etc... could be interesting.

  10. 1

    How is that different than hiring a freelancer? Maybe if you had a flat subscription model or something? Nobody that you want is going to work just for commissions, even if they're huge.

    Or are you thinking like a marketplace for solely connecting founders with high-quality sales people?

  11. -1

    This comment has been voted down. Click to show.

    1. 1

      @chris_davies I agree although I wouldn't say it that bluntly. It's important not to jump the gun. But if you have already built a great product or service then it should be fine.

      1. 1

        Thanks - nothing built at all yet, just a bit of brainstorming

        1. 1

          Sales is totally my lane and from experience there are a few other options to consider

          • The type of affiliate program (blogs, freelance affiliate marketers, etc)
          • Creating a partner program for other people to promote with influencers
          • Outsourcing the sales through an agency
Trending on Indie Hackers
Just crossed $2000 on my first indie app. Here’s what I’ve learnt 26 comments I bootstrapped a cohort-based writing course to 1,400 members in 6 months (while working full-time). AMA! 17 comments Seeking feedback on MVP. Is value prop obvious? 15 comments The Best Collection of 99+ Tools for Product/UI/UX Designer, Maker & Indie Hackers 7 comments Download Product Hunt Upvoters List in 2 Mins 7 comments Roast My Idea: Widget to track order progress 4 comments