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Which is the better market to target? Developers or non-technical e-commerce site owners?

I am working on a web component that allows you to design some graphics in a simple editor and see it in real-time on a 3D mockup.

This can be T-Shirts, mugs or any 3d Model.

I could either build this into an SDK that integrates with frameworks like React, Angular and Vue, or I could focus on turning it into a product that is used directly by personalised product companies and integrating it with things like Woocommerce and Shopify.

I have no experience building WordPress plugins and I hear that the support issues can be very time-consuming. Any advice would be helpful.

I have a very basic prototype that you can try at swiftee.co.za

  1. 1

    Based on my experience as a marketer, I would focus a number of hours on doing the following

    • Mapping out the micro niche Market Problems that your product solves
    • Gathering up quotes related to your Market's problems
    • Researching the user profiles from the quotes above
    • User polls / surveys targeted towards ecommerce owners / developers within LinkedIn and Facebook groups

    I actually love your idea. I see this as being viable for both personas, however, whichever you focus your MVP towards should be based around what is achievable.

    If building a Shopify, Wordpress or Magento plugin for eCommerce non-technical owners isn't realistic, then building this into an SDK or API service to developers is going to be more beneficial.

    This then brings up another issue. Will developers be the one who are writing the checks? You see, these developers will have stakeholders they're accountable for and that will be the eCommerce owners.

    You may find your marketing will need to focus towards the eCommerce owners regardless of whether it's a developer orientated product.

    If you need more advice, feel free to DM me

    1. 1

      Amazing advice. I'm actually building this to use myself. Since I want to sell custom vinyl t-shirts but do not have the time to be doing individual designs for people.

      I also don't want people to just submit their own PDF designs since there are lots of designs that are not compatible with vinyl (complex graphics, fine details).

      So in that case the editor should have constraints built into it so that it can only produce results that are useful. Some businesses would want more freedom than others.

      So I guess my niche would be "businesses that sell customized products"

      If building a Shopify, Wordpress or Magento plugin for eCommerce non-technical owners isn't realistic, then building this into an SDK or API service to developers is going to be more beneficial.

      This is true. I would only have the time to work on Wordpress only.

      Will developers be the one who are writing the checks?

      Wow good point. They would have to get buy in from their client anyway. Might as well focus the marketing to them directly

      Thanks so much. I have a lot to go on from here.

  2. 1

    These are usually marked for specific needs
    Like all the printable stuff is one niche
    The 3d boxes of an info product is another
    Maybe you should niche down that generic idea

    As for who, would a baker be better to sell to other bakers or non bakers?

    1. 1

      Like all the printable stuff is one niche

      Yes. It will be used for my own niche (custom T-shirts) so should probably narrow down on that

      As for who, would a baker be better to sell to other bakers or non bakers?

      Amazing analogy. This is a good way to think about it. Non-Bakers make more sense for what I'm trying to do. Else I would need to make a very general product that covers many cases.

  3. 1

    The preview looks cool!

    I'd say talk to the people who're supposed to use it and see which of the two groups needs it more. Then build it for them.

    1. 2

      Thanks so much. I will do that.

  4. 1

    If you're in doubt I assume both variants aren't inspiring you much. In that case, you should look at your competitors and take the same path as them, yet execute better. Competition proves that there's a clear business case. However, you'll have more challenges to outperform them.

    1. 1

      Thanks. I struggled to find tools exactly like what I'm working on. Might be because it's not needed but I will try to build a better prototype and do some more research.

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