October 28, 2019

Weeded through false-positive feedback

Daniel Palmer @danp

I've been around the block a few times now, and decided to not get carried away despite a successful Product Hunt launch (4th) and lots of great feedback.

From the get go (and still currently), I have a section on the homepage of Makerwing asking people to sign up to a waitlist if they're interested in the set of features I know would take Makerwing to the next level and make it a viable SAAS.

My hypothesis going in was that the chances of turning Makerwing into a profitable SAAS would be extremely unlikely (I don't see the need for the product being strong enough), but given the fact I needed the software for myself, it was worth making for fun.

It was therefore that the Product Hunt launch was a surprise to me. And following this, lots of people have, obviously, told me they'd love the new features and paid plan.

But I'm not buying it. I've seen this exact sort of lukewarm market feedback before.

Two pieces of behaviour have made me believe that the interest isn't actually very strong:

1/ I've been monitoring usage of Makerwing, and only a very small percentage of the huge influx of users fully setup their portfolio. Even fewer are linking it anywhere that I can find.

2/ I sent out an email to all people who signed up for the paid plan waitlist, as a pseudo double opt-in: asking them to answer a very simple question. Only 7% of the list responded.

For now, I'm not feeling a strong enough tug from users to spend more time on Makerwing. At the end of the day, I bet one month on the project, from conception to code to launch to (lack of) validation.

I might jump into the codebase soon to fix up some bugs, and then leave it for at least a few months before reassessing. What I will be looking for when I reassess:

1/ Did a small group of users continue to use Makerwing?

2/ Did anyone follow up with me to see if I'm making any updates?

In the meantime, I will use my spare time to work on my next project (which is another "scratch my own itch" tool), Inboxmood: email-based mood tracking.

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