December 20, 2019

Launched on Hacker News

Alex Fedorov @alex_f

This launch was much better!

Our launch post “Show HN: I built a website for sharing salary info—your HR gonna hate this” has reached the first page and was top-1 for few minutes until mods have removed the "your HR gonna hate this" part :D Likely, it was considered a clickbait.

We have received about 10K+ landing page visits, 5K+ visits to the demo app with demo data, and then 300+ people have proceeded to sign up and share their salary information with other users in FelloWage. Out of which, only 110+ people have made it to the end: accepted & vetted registration.

This was a ride because our vetting process is partially manual. My partner was checking LinkedIn profiles and accepting/rejecting registrations, and I was replying to people in the chat, email and on HackerNews comments, all the time interrupted and switching between activities like crazy.

Also, I recorded a whole bunch of minor (albeit annoying) bugs and another 7-10 good feature requests that I actually intend to implement before the next launch (probably, on Reddit).

We really think that we need to have a little bit more automation for the vetting process because that was a totally exhausting day, that makes you feel super-anxious in the end.

Why anxious?

I’m not sure.

Probably because it looks like success (so many visitors and sign-ups, and the post was trending for half a day on the first page of HN), but it’s still 0 USD of revenue, because all of these users are free, and the system doesn’t have enough data yet to compel them to pay for the paid account.

I’m not sure how much data I would need. Perhaps I should focus on saturating certain locations (like focus on Berlin, or San Francisco), and then have first paid accounts there, and then expand from there. I’m not sure if that’s the right path. Because right now we have a little bit of data in a lot of different locations around the globe.

Here is the link

  1. 1

    Congrats on the launch Alex! Was this your first time posting on HN? And also, I would like to know about the time you posted :)

    1. 1

      About your time question: I posted at ~12:50 UTC+1 time, on Friday (workday—it’s important).

      I used this data for reference when to post so that it stays longer on the first page of the "New" tab— (for about 55 minutes, enough to get enough initial upvotes—first 10 upvotes are the most important ones)

      It’s also okay to choose shorter times (like 20-30 minutes) because there will be more active readers, but also higher competition.

      1. 1

        Thanks @alex_f! This is an incredibly useful resource.

    2. 1

      Hey, Itty,

      That wasn’t my first time. I’ve reached the first page of HN already 2 times before that (in a span of the last 4 years). My account had positive karma (180-ish, and now 290-ish), so that played the role as well, but not too much (because karma really starts to affect things after 1000+ on HN). Also, my account is quite old.

      You can see all my submissions here: — I’m clearly not a PRO at this, as there are tons of 1-5 pointers that didn’t make it.

      Now, what played the major role in my current post (I assume) is that it had just a little bit of a humorous click-baity punchline at the end of the title "—your HR gonna hate this". And mods quickly removed it as soon as it reached Top-1, and I was able to see this removal clearly in my website metrics (instead of 34 requests per second, it dropped to 11 requests per second on the second they removed this).

      I’m going to launch more products in the future and let’s see what more we can learn.

      1. 1

        Yeah, makes perfect sense! We posted on Show HN once and it didn't do very well. Having positive karma and an older account really play a part as far as I've seen.

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