Making Tech Choices: Don’t Add Risk to an Already Risky Business

As technical founders, we're supposed to choose the technology that works best for us and our business. But we often let the cargo-culting around the newest, hottest tech stack get to us. Many technical founders see a new startup as an opportunity to figure out a modern tech stack. That is a dangerous move. Not … Continue reading Making Tech Choices: Don’t Add Risk to an Already Risky Business

Surviving a Recession as a Bootstrapped Business

Just a few weeks after the beginning of the Coronavirus outbreak, the first SaaS businesses are reporting cancellations. The bootstrapped SaaS world may not be affected by the pandemic as much as other industries, but we are already seeing second-order effects appearing. For example, you may not be affected by the temporary closure of bars … Continue reading Surviving a Recession as a Bootstrapped Business

How to Release as a Bootstrapper: Often, Early, and Safely

We had "Software is never finished, only abandoned." While this is true, it doesn't tell us anything helpful. So let's rephrase this into something we can act on: "Software is never finished, only released." Let's talk about releasing your product, and what makes this process special for bootstrapped founders. In most cases, technical founders will be … Continue reading How to Release as a Bootstrapper: Often, Early, and Safely

The Do’s and Don’ts of the Minimum Viable Product

Leonardo da Vinci supposedly said, "Art is never finished, only abandoned." This is definitely true for software as well. The only antidote to abandonment is to put your work in front of other people, even when it's not perfect yet.  The startup industry has coined the term of the MVP, the Minimum Viable Product, to … Continue reading The Do’s and Don’ts of the Minimum Viable Product

Solution Validation Doesn’t Happen In a Vacuum: How to Talk To Your Future Customers

As entrepreneurs, we are good at coming up with ideas. We envision solutions to the problems that trouble the audience we have chosen to help. We think deeply about a problem, mentally shape a product, and see how much it would benefit the quality of life. Then we get to work and build the prototype, … Continue reading Solution Validation Doesn’t Happen In a Vacuum: How to Talk To Your Future Customers

Make It Sell Itself: On Referral Systems

One year into running FeedbackPanda, we released a referral system. It was an immediate success, and it stayed that way ever since. When we sold the business, around 40% of new signups came through our referral system. Immediately after turning on the user-facing parts of the referral system, we started seeing results. Our social media … Continue reading Make It Sell Itself: On Referral Systems

Problem Validation: Making Sure You’re Talking To The Right People

"Talk to your customers," they say, "because that's the only way to build something people want."  The collective wisdom of the bootstrapper scene is not wrong. But talking to your customers is only half the truth. It's just as important to speak to the right kinds of customers as it is to ignore the rest. … Continue reading Problem Validation: Making Sure You’re Talking To The Right People