October 15, 2019

Calling time on Timesy

Dudley Laver @Laver777

After 9 months I have taken the decision to close Timesy. This is the first project I have seen through to the end. It took me 4 months to build and was used by a handful of companies - which was very rewarding to see. I have spent the last few months pushing the product, with social, ads and even flyering local businesses - but all to no avail.

Reasons for closing

  • Monthly running costs were outweighing revenue
  • Too many company variables meaning that designing an MPV to suit all was tough
  • Low revenue makes advertising hard
  • Target market was vey niche and location based

Lessons learned

  • B2B projects are much harder to market
  • Don't underprice your product
  • Get the product in front of people early as possible, instead of making it fully polished
  • Design a project that is not geographically restricted

All is not lost
As Timesy was built on the the no-code platform bubble - I will be reusing the designs and UI and creating them into a series of paid templates. So hopefully someone can benefit from it and if I make a little revenue from it that would be great.

Whats next?
I spent a number of days trying to implement Google calendar, I asked in forums but got little to no response. Which got me thinking why would people help me without any incentive? So my next project is to help people solve their problems and should be live in the next week or two, so keep an eye out

  1. 4

    Hey Dudley, your idea looks solid to me, but nothing like the market to tell you what they want!

    That said a three-month trial shows desperation and your pricing of £0.50 per employee is far too low. Also, it's in pounds and so only applies to the UK which is such a small market compared to the rest of the English speaking world.

    I would be interested to know if you played with these metrics at all?

    I think you have a solution to a problem. You do however need to target a specific industry to start with. This way you can really narrow down your advertising, which will bring the cost down and your marketing message will be just for that one industry (to start) i.e. Timely is designed for Auto Repair Shops to xyz

    Shame to see you walk away when you have put so much into this project.

    1. 2

      I agree with @smeagain - idea and execution both look decent and this is certainly a problem we have in my workplace (startup with 5 staff) albeit a minor one. If feedback from users was positive and they kept using it then I would say don't give it up completely, keep it ticking over, increase prices to see what existing customers will stretch to, and try to find some easier routes to market e.g. get something in a blog for human resources people (if that exists) as they're the ones who will realise its value.

      Also i should add that as a non-coder it's my dream to have even one product as polished as this!

      1. 1

        Hey @Bagodonuts really appreciate your positive feedback. I think you have hit the nail on the head, Timesy does solve a problem but most companies don't want to pay or it's not enough of a problem to start using another piece of software. I will still keep the landing page going and maybe turn it into an email capture page and keep the code for future use. All the best in your projects

    2. 1

      Hey @smeagain thanks for taking the time to give me some feedback. Unfortunately this space is dominated by one other company so the £0.50 is simply to match thier offering. I could keep it going but wouldn't break even for a long time which I can't afford to do at the moment. This solved the problem for my current employer but isn't as exciting as my next project and want to concentrate my efforts into just one business. Lastly welcome to Indie Hackers !

  2. 2

    Hey Dudley, would you be interested in selling Timesy? It looks like you've worked pretty hard on it and it could be interesting to leave it running for a while and see how it ends up.

    I'm looking for a tiny existing saas project to play around with after burning out on my own and Timesy looks like one of those!

  3. 1

    Hi Dudley, sorry to see Timesy closing. I can see you have put in alot of hours into development and marketing it.

    I checked out your website to see the features and it looks like you could potentially use the same colors and features to build a product for another market where you see fit.

    Rather than closing or selling it off completely, you could potentially licence tech to interested people and maybe hold back the tech to do a different product of your own in a different space.

  4. 1

    Hi Dudley,

    Your product does look pretty good. My guess though is that you're competing with a lot of payroll programs that keep track of this stuff.

    You can also charge a lot more for B2B than B2C. I personally prefer marketing to small businesses as it's easy to find the person with the purse strings. But if you do the maths £.50 per employee is going to need a lot of employees and that's not sustainable.

    I think though that instead of throwing the towel in, why not do a market pivot.

    This looks like you could keep track of accommodation bookings and the like. I know a lot of people struggle with this - even with things like AirBnB. Maybe there's a legs, but not in the direction you immediately thought.

    Cheers,
    Adam

  5. 1

    So my next project is to help people solve their problems and should be live in the next week or two, so keep an eye out

    I like that you just worked on something for 9 months, and it failed, and you're ready to go again without any loss of energy. Good luck in the journey ahead.

  6. 1

    I've been there man, that's tough.

    I'm glad to hear you used a no-code product though. I'm building a no-code product now and would be curious to hear your thoughts on Bubble, and what I could maybe do differently.

    1. 1

      Hey @wrannaman Nice to meet another no-coder. Being a graphic designer by trade, Bubble is brilliant and can't recommend it highly enough. It allows me to build things quickly and with hundreds of plugins available there's not many things Bubble can't do. Thanks for your kind words and best of luck with SugarKubes

  7. 1

    Always one of the toughest decisions to make. Good luck on your next project!

  8. 1

    Hi, I think this is a really brave decision by you. It takes guts to call it a day and move on to something else. I applaud you, and good luck in whatever you take on next :)

  9. 1

    Cheers @ard - well it was a problem at my current work so I built it for that purpose. Then I realised there wasn't may people offering the service so put it out to other companies. On to the next idea!

  10. 1

    Hey man, sorry that really sucks. Just wondering how did you validate the market/project before you decided to built it? How far did you get building it before you started the sales process? I also did a b2b app once (and failed at sales), I had a hard time with it.