$30 off During Our Annual Pro Sale. View Details »

A Software Business on 5 Hours a Week

A Software Business on 5 Hours a Week

Running a software business part-time and building systems to help do the marketing for you.

My (patio11's) presentation at Microconf 2011.

Patrick McKenzie

April 16, 2011
Tweet

More Decks by Patrick McKenzie

Other Decks in Business

Transcript

  1. A SOFTWARE BUSINESS ON 5 HOURS A WEEK Patrick McKenzie

  2. The Problem: Making This Sucks

  3. The Big Idea  $60 budget  1 week schedule

     Big Hairy Audacious Goal: $200 a month
  4. Bingo Card Creator – July 2006

  5. $0.00 $50.00 $100.00 $150.00 $200.00 $250.00 $300.00 $350.00 7/2006 8/2006

    Sales In First Two Months
  6. Why Did It Sell That Much?

  7. Version 1.02 – Now With Less Crashes!

  8. $0.00 $100.00 $200.00 $300.00 $400.00 $500.00 $600.00 $700.00 $800.00 $900.00

    $1,000.00 7/2006 8/2006 9/2006 10/2006 11/2006 12/2006 1/2007 2/2007 3/2007 4/2007 5/2007 6/2007 Sales In First 12 Months
  9. AdWords, Halloween, Google… Oh My! $0.00 $500.00 $1,000.00 $1,500.00 $2,000.00

    $2,500.00 7/2006 8/2006 9/2006 10/2006 11/2006 12/2006 1/2007 2/2007 3/2007 4/2007 5/2007 6/2007 7/2007 8/2007 9/2007 10/2007 Sales Through Halloween '07
  10. A Brief Aside About EMDs • Mini-sites targeted at individual

    customer needs: $200 + $10 per year (~$500 for this one, for the domain) • Exact match domains (“halloween bingo cards”.{com|net|org}) • Declining part of my strategy, but still print money three times a year. • Why lease traffic when you can get it for free?
  11. The Big Idea: Scalable Content Creation

  12. $0.00 $500.00 $1,000.00 $1,500.00 $2,000.00 $2,500.00 $3,000.00 Sales Through 2008

  13. Make It A Web App

  14. $0.00 $500.00 $1,000.00 $1,500.00 $2,000.00 $2,500.00 $3,000.00 $3,500.00 $4,000.00 $4,500.00

    $5,000.00 Sales Through 2009
  15. Holy Cow. This Is My Day Job.

  16. $0.00 $1,000.00 $2,000.00 $3,000.00 $4,000.00 $5,000.00 $6,000.00 $7,000.00 7/2006 8/2006

    9/2006 10/2006 11/2006 12/2006 1/2007 2/2007 3/2007 4/2007 5/2007 6/2007 7/2007 8/2007 9/2007 10/2007 11/2007 12/2007 1/2008 2/2008 3/2008 4/2008 5/2008 6/2008 7/2008 8/2008 9/2008 10/2008 11/2008 12/2008 1/2009 2/2009 3/2009 4/2009 5/2009 6/2009 7/2009 8/2009 9/2009 10/2009 11/2009 12/2009 1/2010 2/2010 3/2010 4/2010 5/2010 6/2010 7/2010 8/2010 9/2010 10/2010 11/2010 12/2010 1/2011 2/2011 3/2011 4/2011 5/2011 Sales To Date
  17. Adventures Since Quitting

  18. Five Quick Bits Of Advice

  19. Charge More  Programmers consistently underprice. Double it, then go

    higher.  Avoid pathological customers by charging more.  Revenue is dominated by customers on most expensive plan spending other people’s money.  Recurring revenue is the best kind.
  20. Make Web Applications  Faster iteration.  Easier support. 

    Dramatically higher conversion rates.  Recurring revenue is the best kind.  Better tracking of actual use than MiniPeace.
  21. Figure Out SEO  Free traffic from interested people =

    free money.  Single best thing you can do for SEO: create a reason why people who do not buy your software should cite your website anyhow.  Second single best thing: create a system which makes content at scale.
  22. The Inverted Iceberg Rule Photo: Natalielucier on Flickr

  23. Optimize. Everything.  All factors in success of a software

    business are multiplicative.  A/B testing: 5% increase in conversion rate, once per month, is ~70% increase in revenue per year.  A/B testing is cheap & easy to get started with.  More advanced: funnel optimization, first-run experience, etc.
  24. In Five Hours Per Week!?

  25. Three Keys To Avoid Wasting Time Outsource Automate Eliminate

  26. Stuff To Outsource Web design Web content Self-contained programming projects

    Customer support
  27. Stuff To Automate Routine customer support tasks Drudgery – license

    generation, keyword analysis, etc Server maintenance/monitoring
  28. Dashboard O’ Goodness

  29. The Big Idea: Scalable Content Generation  Automate production of

    high-quality pages responsive to specific user needs, around a template and/or data source.  Outsource the production of text for those pages.  ????  Profit!
  30. Make One Page

  31. Do It 941 More Times

  32. … Without Going Spare Live Demo Time

  33. It Really Works Baby Shower $6,870.00 Halloween $4,230.00 Valentines Day

    $3,600.00 Christmas $2,520.00 St Patrick's Day $1,890.00 Summer $1,680.00 Easter $1,470.00 Cinco De Mayo $1,170.00 Addition 1 To 10 $960.00 Thanksgiving $600.00 Christmas (Seasonal) $600.00 Football $570.00 Multiplication 1 To 10 $510.00 Mother's Day $450.00 Back to School $390.00 Periodic Table Of Elements $360.00 4th of July $330.00 Spring $270.00 Women Of The Bible $270.00 Winter $270.00 Nutrition $270.00 Geometry $240.00 Autumn $210.00 Careers $210.00 Fraction Multiplications $180.00 • Total sales: $39,270 • Total investment: $3,000 • 251 activities / 942 have generated sales • Top selling activity: I didn’t even know people did that. And 226 More!
  34. Stuff To Eliminate  Checking Google Analytics 37 times per

    day Worrying about competition  Development which does not meet demonstrable customer needs – see Lean Startup
  35. Thanks for Listening  Blog at http://www.kalzumeus.com  Slides will

    be posted. See @patio11  Send me email. I love chatting about this. patrick@kalzumeus.com