The Missing Income Report

11 Aug 2018

This is part 41 in my series of blog posts documenting my attempt to take Saber from Side Project to Profitable Startup. If you've not yet read the previous parts, you should definitely start from part 1.

So this is new low for me, I managed to miss three monthly income reports. I’ve been a little late before, but this is taking the piss. In my defence, I have been very busy rebranding BugMuncher, which you may have noticed is now called Saber.

On the plus side, nothing much really happened over the last three months, so I’m going to kind of skip over May and June, although I’ll mention anything of note in the text:

The Figures

  July 2018 April 2018 Change
Monthly Recurring Revenue $4,098 $4,192
Income £2,528.11 £2,675.76
Expenses £2,452.78 £2,442.91
Paying customers 57 63
- Personal Plan 16 20
- Startup Plan 31 34
- Corporate Plan 10 9
Unique users on landing page 1,036 1,175
New Free Trial sign ups 32 35
Free Trial sign up rate
New Paying customers 1 2
New Freemium Customers 6 13
Lost Paying Customers 2 1
Free Trial to Paying conversion
Free Trial to Freemium conversion
Profit

Well, that’s a lot of red. The main culprit was actually may, in which I had a deluge of churned subscriptions, but it was countered by a new top Coprorate level subscription ($199 / month). All three months hovered around the $4,100 mark (May was $4,098 and June $4,157), as has been the status quo for far too long now.

There was also a new expense thrown into the mix, as I finally sent too many emails to remain on SendGrid’s free plan. Although that was mostly because some Chinese guy kept signing up for free trials and then spamming the invite function. Had to ban his IP addresses in the end.

Revenue

This whole stagnation thing is getting really old, but I finally now have a plan of attack:

Plans for the Future

Usually I call this section “Plans for [next month]”, (eg: Plans for August) but I’m thinking a bit more long term this month.

As regular readers will know, marketing has always been my weakness. Partly because I don’t know much about marketing, partly because I don’t enjoy it, but mostly because BugMuncher never had a defined target market. Well that last one has now changed.

A major part of the rebrand was to refocus and actually have a target market. I noticed a while a go that BugMuncher was disproportionately popular with Universities and E-Learning sites, so those are the target market for Saber. I’ve even set up an E-Learning specific landing page.

Just knowing to whom I am marketing has given me loads of ideas of how to do it, I particularly think I can be much more effective with content marketing. For the first time ever, I’m actually looking forward to doing some marketing.

I’m also unsure of the future of these blog posts. Rest assured Saber will always be a financially transparent company, but these posts don’t tell the whole picture, as there are incomes and expenses that don’t relate to Saber, so get left out. I’m thinking of moving these posts to a separate blog, that would cover Matt Bearman Ltd’s income reports, painting a much more detailed picture of what it’s like to try and make a living as solo, bootstrapped, entrepreneur. I’m also considering making these posts quarterly instead of monthly, just to free up some more time.

Let me know what you think in the comments, and as always, thanks for reading

- Matt


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