It's really a win/win, and because he's sincerely answering the questions, it doesn't come across as awkward of misplaced self-promotion.
I also signed up for oppsdaily, but the verification with MailChimp was quite difficult. I had to select pictures with grass, then select images with house numbers, then select new images with house numbers. You might want to consider using a different provider.
With that said, I much rather prefer this new reCAPTCHA compared to their old version with hardly any readable characters.
I'm now working on a video series about how cars work which I hope will be a good seller.
I've been making freeware and shareware for a long time. Some are shareware and still make some (not much) money.
Edit: You might be interested in this retrospective I wrote about my personal favorite utilities: http://www.rlvision.com/blog/16-years-with-flash-renamer-a-d...
Is it still possible to make money with shareware?
The website provides a semester simulator that can (accurately) predict student grades, workload, etc for a given course / semester.
It also provides a breakdown of the grade distributions, work load (in hours), difficulty, etc. For every course, professor, and combination there, for universities on the site.
Profitable is relative, I spent around 100 hours tossing the website together and make maybe $100+ a month with a freemium model. I have roughly 2500 active users (not all paying), with zero put into advertising. There is probably potential to grow this, but thus far prying money from students is painful.
Monitors status pages of cloud services with optional notifications and creates a unified status page of your service dependencies. I wrote a blog post recently about how profitable (barely) it is: https://blog.statusgator.com/anatomy-of-a-profitable-side-pr...
I am really interested in real-time, or timely monitoring of external services. I'll check the service out, but curious if any of it is open source, and hos you verify a site is up/down?
And StatusGator doesn't verify that a service is up or down, it just reports what a service reports. Most status pages have several components which are either up, down, or warn, and StatusGator aggregates that same data from all the various sources. If any component is down, that service is listed as down, etc.
I help developers market themselves effectively. Its not a huge product, but has a fair amount of demand. Feels good to help people move forward in their carreers. Even helped one land a job that got him a visa. Not crazy profitable, though. I charge less than $500 for something that can easily go for ten times more. But money is not everything and it brings me joy to see people move up in life. Currently only work with 2 people per month due tk time constraints. So it does less than $1k a month. Pays for hobbies.
Its a side project that was born out of people on twitter wanting to hire my shop (Yelluw) do it for them. But didnt make sense for them to hire a whole shop to do something so small.
Just the other day my boss discussed some hiring decisions with me, and he said "the guy is too expensive. If he had a blog or an active github profile, I could justify 10% more" (above what we'd usually pay for the position).
So, having a public blog with some contents and visitors can increase your pay as a developer by 10% easily. If you're not comfortable with traditional marketing, that's all you need to do.
And if you're lucky, you can also sell some courses on pluralsight/udemy/whatever at some point, and make some extra cash on the side.
Creating the courses is fun, and exchanging correspondence with students is fantastic - they tend to be super motivated and have many ideas for different apps that they want to build.
CG automatically powers social media, websites and customer newsletters with engaging curated content. It's a serious, profitable side project and we're approaching our fifth year.
If you don't mind sharing, what's your MRR?
It's a numbers-free habit tracker for iOS, for people who want to self-track but don't want to deal with remembering and inputting precise values all the time.
I'm not buying helicopters off of it, but it brings in $400-$600/month, plus I occasionally get to hear nice little self-improvement stories from my customers.
https://autoplaylists.simon.codes: iTunes-style smart playlists for Google Music.
https://gchat.simon.codes: autoreplies for Google Chat/Hangouts. Particularly useful for people with multiple accounts that forward email.
https://simon.codes/2017/01/09/side-project-income-2016-0-to... has more details on why I chose these and how I got started.
In the case I run into problems, I'd consider changing the license.
It took about 4-6 weeks to build (fairly significant hours during that time). It currently only has 1 paying customer, but they pay about 10% more than it costs to host, so it technicaly makes profit month to month, but is unlikely to ever make back the costs I sunk into it.
(Main problem is that although it was intended to be able to be used to build lots of sites, I think in the end it was too closely tied to what the first customer wanted, so although they love it, I've never been able to sell it to anyone else, I've more or less given up on it now)
It seemed that we couldn't compete on price, because cheaper design shops could throw together a template and charge £100-£200 total + only bare minimum £5 budget hosting per month.
And we also couldn't compete on customisation or service because for only a few thousand you can get a reasonable quality fully custom site.
I'd be interested to chat more if you were willing. (email in my profile).
Browsing the projects on indiehacker, most of them are off-to-the-side (they consume data and work with it and mostly that data is low valye) or development related (things that are embedded or make pages but don't run in production).
But a handful of them actually must have credentials for other service to work or run in a trusted contest - in other words, they are used in ways that expose the customer to security issues on the part of the operator of the side project. What happens if you get pwned and cost your much larger customers serious money?
A platform for monitoring cron jobs and scheduled tasks. Nobody here is getting rich from it, but it is profitable and brings in some extra cash which is nice.
I run a small side business. My initial customers I priced like this. After the first year, I realized I was leaving a lot of money on the table - my business was niche and not commoditized, and my customers were willing to pay quite a lot more for the service.
I grandfathered in the first year customers and re-structured my pricing to be more "value based" - how much were my customers actually willing to pay for the service, i.e. how much was it worth to them.
It took a little while to figure out good price points, and there was a short period of time when I'm sure I lost some customers because prices were too high, but in general, my margins are significantly higher by charging customers based on their percieved value, as opposed to just covering my costs with a fixed margin. The customers don't even mind, because in their minds, the price is good value.
It's important to do this not just for its money-making potential - it creates a better impression of "value" for your product, and people value things that they pay more money for. Underpricing can cheapen people's perspective of your product, and de-value your time.
Minimum margins are for commodity businesses - where there are lots of competitors and customers can switch easily. For anything else, you can earn more money by considering "value pricing" based on talking to your customers and finding out their pricing tolerance.
That is hardly a huge increase, and I could probably go higher, but it was a good moment for me.
Keygen provides a hosted SaaS product and app licensing API. Support for self-hosting Keygen is planned. Currently in closed beta, but have a few contracts lined up already so it should be profitable from day 1 after launch.
I have a couple other side projects that are barely profitable, but none of them seem to have the kind of market Keygen has.
I launched this as a Show HN because I thought it would be fun to build, and it just exploded :). It's profitable, and only a side project. I'll never make it a full-time thing, but the daily users make it a real joy to maintain.
I teach Rails developers how to create Angular + Rails applications.
The site has existed since 2014 as an unmonetized blog. In June 2016 I started writing the book, and to date it has made a little over $5,000.
The alpha only took a few weeks, but making it production ready took much much longer. I did learn a lot building it, but for it to support me financially, I need to do a ton of sales & marketing.
It's a very fast product search engine and price comparison website. Search speeds won't be great outside Australia (Australian stores).
I am currently making preparations to expand to other countries later this year.
It has only become (slightly) profitable just recently.
I had been approached many times by tech publishers to write books from scratch, but I never found the process and economics attractive.
Then I spotted LeanPub--quite possibly on HN--and I thought, "Hmmm, there is nearly zero barrier to entry." They accepted Markdown, and I already had my entire blog in Markdown on GitHub.
So I published a collection of essays (https://leanpub.com/shippingsoftware), and launched it with a "Show HN" style post, making the book free. LeanPub allows people to pay more if they want, and an amazing number of people paid more, I made $2,000 in one day just from being on the front page of HN.
I've written a few other books since then, but I firmly believe that writing is a side project, not my profession, so I make a lot less than other authors who really put their backs into it.
But I'm happy, and my readers are happy, and I get a little money every month from people I like.
A few observations that may be valuable for other side-projects, whether media or software:
Some of my biggest wins were the books I didn't write. LeanPub has a feature where you can cobble together a book title and a cover image, and it creates a landing page that collects emails from interested readers.
Several times, I have created landing pages for books I was interested in writing and when I promoted the landing pages... Crickets. I didn't write those books.
JM2C, YMMCV, &c.
> I had been approached many times by tech publishers to write books from scratch, but I never found the process and economics attractive.
You might want to consider writing the book on leanpub, and then talking to a traditional publisher to adopt the book. At least that's my plan for https://leanpub.com/perl6 (a publisher has approached me, though it's currently in a too early stage, so we've deferred further discussions until version 1 of the manuscript is ready).
> Some of my biggest wins were the books I didn't write. LeanPub has a feature where you can cobble together a book title and a cover image, and it creates a landing page that collects emails from interested readers.
I believe you need to create a book on leanpub for that, which now costs USD$99. Not terribly much, but a certain threshold that prevents me from just throwing out ideas like this.
Yes, that is a new "feature." However, IIRC, once you reach a certain threshold of royalties, the $99 is waived. So,if I were starting today, I still wouldn't pay it because my very first book would get me over the threshold.
Now I had the benefit of having written a blog, so I had material and an audience. But these are important things to have even if you don't pay $99 to publish a book.
If you want to write a book, or start a software side-project, it is enormously helpful to "prime the pump" by building your brand a little. Speak at conferences, write a blog, be a thoughtful contributor on social media sites where your eventual customers go for help.
If you do those things, you needn't worry about the $99 for your first book, or whatever fee some captive app market charges you, &c.
Bit of a chicken-and-egg problem, but online reputations can be built over time by plugging away, a little like gold-mining in MMORPGs...
For various reasons, I take the latter view: You can be surprisingly successful in a smaller market, with fewer competitors, that has a very "opinionated" or "early adopter" culture, compared to a mass market with many competitors and a wide variety of sub-cultures.
But I created http://Bestoftheinternets.com/Deals which using the amazon API looks for significant price changes in products to help consumers find deals on amazon products.
Revenue slowly coming along, but for me as a programmer I got a reason to teach myself some server side nodejs. Eventually I would like to roll it over to angular 2 so I can get some angular 2 experience and hopefully make some money!
There used to be an advertisement at the bottom and sometimes I get donations.
Add password protection, render markdown, and more to come!
Profits from it have let me invested and co-founded another startup I am building that is 100x more complicated: https://ahoy.io
It's nice because I do not have to worry about salary, as I can live comfortably from the revenue from STAMP.
VoIP Spear monitors your Internet connection 24x7 for voic quality issues affecting your phone calls. I have about 850 active users though not all are paying users.
I created the site because I work in the VoIP industry and its crazy expensive to do continuous VoIP monitoring. There was no low cost, easy to use option so I decided to do it myself.
I am asking because I am working on a small side-project called Email This (https://www.emailthis.me). I plan to let it run for free, but if someone is interested they can support the app with a donation.
I spend way too much time on it though, so I wouldn't exactly call it profitable if you count my time - the term I use is 'hobby business'.
This was made to scratch my own itch of wanting to watch videos at faster speeds. At first I had ads, but that wasn't making much. When I made it not free, it started pulling in about $500 a month.
We allow you to do small/startup business banking all through our application rather than through your bank. We gained a few clients, but I am hoping once we release our own bank account and card products it will help us expand into a bigger project.
Makes a good amount of cash per year, and is my excuse to experiment with cross platform .net / mono desktop applications.
It started with just targeting iPhone users but we accept any kind of panorama photos.
Profit is good enough to cover my monthly meal expenses.
It is still in beta, and i havent even launched it in HN yet. I have a couple of my friends, who are paying to use this service.
Free right now, but hopefully will make a decent amount after our beta.
Not profitable now but hoping it will it sometime next year.
Schedule email, text message and push-notification reminders.
The website girls are hilarious in a ridiculous kind of way.
Very original project :)
How can you even afford manufacturing? I'm guessing the market for these little utility-keyboards aren't really big. And most factories require a certain minimum order quantity.
This'll be a fun gift for our network engineer next christmas :)
Ramen profitable, but profitable nonetheless.