Let me start with my inspiration. I am looking at, digital nomad, the motivation behind indiehackers.com, one and only, Pieter Levels . That sounded a bit like introduction before a boxing match. I remember reading Pieter Levels blog when I was starting my career as a programmer. At that time he didn’t have so much following on social media and wasn’t Product Hunt maker of the year. The 12 startups in a year challenge had a vibe that everything is possible. Levels made bold claims and I was bit skeptic, but couldn’t stop reading. Spoiler alert: He didn’t finish his challenge because one of the projects took off, big time.
It was the inspiring story and awesome idea to push yourself to become a creator. If you read my other blog posts, especially the one about becoming a junior developer, you know why I decided on this career road. It wasn’t about money, safe job, it was always about creating something from nothing.
I always looked for a way to express myself
Before programming, it was screenwriting, trying to become a copywriter in an ad agency and writing poems. The idea of this kind of challenge seemed amazing, but doubts happened — maybe learn more and then you can pursue your ideas. Fast-forward 4 years, I’m earning money as a programmer, and I will not lie, I like my job, but feel something is missing. My initial drive came from the place of being a creative person, I lost something along the way. I don’t remember even when, but all is not lost. 28 years old is not that old, maybe I can still create. With 5 years of experience under the belt, it should be easier, right? I’m finally mature enough to challenge myself that way and SHIP IT. This year is looking already good, I have the support of incredible girlfriend, my facebook data analyzer library took off like crazy and will soon reach 500 stars on Github. All the pieces fit together, it’s a right time for that kind of challenge.
Lately, the Shopify made a big impression on me. After setting small shop for one of my friends, I discovered they have the app store with micro SAAS products. There is something about e-commerce that makes me tick, can’t explain why it’s pure and helping other people with software to sell more and have an efficient workflow. That’s why Shopify is my pick for the challenge.
New Year resolution in the middle of the year
Who said that big goals have to start at beginning of the year? Let’s build some businesses this year, real paid products with SASS pricing. It’s time for me to make some bold claims about delivering 6 apps and making all that in front of you, my readers. I am not Pieter Levels, maybe I will not end up with great business at the end of the year, maybe I will be brutally destroyed by the market. Let’s enjoy this rollercoaster ride together.
Rules of the game
6 apps in Shopify app store till the end of 2018
One month per app
Only paid products with monthly fee, no free tools
Full transparency — app installs, revenue per app, conversion rates…
Progress regularly posted on blog and twitter
I’m not quitting my job but products shouldn’t be too small. They should work without obvious features missing. NO FAKE APPS!
The first app is already in the making and will hit the app store in June, keep fingers crossed for passing the Shopify app store review process. It’s a product description readability analysis for your shop, it goes over your whole catalog of products and reviews them using algorithms, similar to Hemingway app. You can check very raw landing page on tweakread.com. I will post often about my progress in this challenge, so follow me on medium and Twitter.
One experienced developer vs. Shopify ecosystem. 6 months. 6 apps. Let’s gamble!