while looking for which side product to build for myself, I accidentally opened an area that just blew my mind with it potential!
It's RaaS (research-as-a-service), or list-based products, or just info products. Yes, this area isn't new for most of people - in this post I just want to share the introduction (how/why I got this idea) + the reasons why I think this niche is underrated
The idea to make it came from the goal to build my first side product. Since I'm not a pro developer, I preferred a nocode solution for it. This is something that helps you start easier/faster, but what somehow limits your idea at the same time.
Once you have stack, you need an idea. It's hard to find something meaningful to build if you are haven't started yet, so I created a list of ideas that should be interesting to build. One of them was building a product like Newsletter Spy which helps you collect information.
After researching more about this product, I realised that its creator (Jakob Greenfeld) has a bunch of more similar products which are not just lists - but a lot more. This led me to an idea to build a collection of similar (Airtable+Gumroad - based) products to get inspired for myself + to inspire others. It's in beta, so if you want to see it -> just let me know (not sure if I can leave a self-promo links here).
THE REASONS WHY IT'S UNDERRATED:
RaaS products are technologically simple
You can build your first one with Carrd+Airtable easily. All the value is inside information, not the website. You don't need to spend so much time on the 'shape' of it, design and development - because all you need to start is already out there!
RaaS can help your main business a lot!
No matter what you do, you can build a list of something to help promote it.
eg, If you run SEO agency, you can make a list of SEO hacks or SEO recommendations or a checklist of steps or something like that. I'm sure it can work for any other industry/niche.
You can promote your services, newsletter, twitter profile, etc.
Some big companies do their mini-raas as well, eg: https://www.producthunt.com/posts/seo-glossary-by-serpstat
Good RaaS idea can grow into something bigger
I was inspired by opportunities.so by Jakob Greenfeld again - it's not just list, but a whole service for getting reports/insights/value in one particular area.
This means, you can start with list - but go further and turn it into something bigger.
RaaS are great for beginners
If I haven't built a product myself yet, it's hard to start. Getting 'the proper' idea seems hard, every potential niche seems already busy, development is expensive, etc. There is million of reasons why building products is hard, and lists/collections solve most of them easily.
You just pick the 'least terrible' idea, start working on it and see whether it may work or not further, iterating it if needed.
RaaS are great for portfolio
As a product manager myself, I find it hard to prove my skills. If you are designer or developer, having portfolio seems straightforward & doable. For PM or marketing specialist it's harder to prove this on someone else' projects. Basically, you need your own one to showcase it -> and RaaS can be the perfect solution for it!
You can build RaaS empire if you like researching
I was surprised to see that there a product like ProfitableInsider.com, which is literally a RaaS empire! These guys launch new reports in different niches, saving hours of work for other entrepreneurs/businesses who want to start building in that area.
Once you build your first RaaS, you may want to build the next one and more after, improving your idea/approach, switching the vertical, etc.
Niches for RaaS are unlimited
You can easily get inspired to build something, seeing how others did it.
For example, there is a collection of 250+ Nocode tools. If you love nocode, you can easily build another collection of:
I'm sure there are a lot more reasons why RaaS are huge! Maybe we'll be able to find some of them in comments 😉
Hope you guys enjoyed reading this post - I'd be happy to discuss more RaaS opportunities!
Also if you want to learn more, here are some RaaS-related threads here on IH: