It’s 1 month since we launched Reactor, and it’s been eye-opening to say the least.
The launch didn’t go like I wanted it to, and I am not very excited about sharing our numbers. I almost didn’t publish this post, until I read these two posts. The truth is that launches don’t always go the way you planned.
Here’s a breakdown of what’s happened so far:
We had over 100 signups, and only about 35 of those have translated into paying customers.
I’m pretty happy with the amount of signups, but we have a big problem with cancellations. Too many people have cancelled, and it’s driving me nuts.
I’ve read that a normal SaaS business has about a 3% churn. Our launch month was over 50%. Ugh.
It’s hard for me to even share this with you. I’d rather be writing a post about how the launch was a great success and we are rolling in dough, but that’s not the case.
Does this mean we failed, or that our product sucks?
Absolutely not. Here’s why.
I’ve emailed everyone who has cancelled personally, and the feedback I got told a different story than just looking at the numbers.
There’s a couple of things that we got wrong, but it’s nothing that’s unfixable. We are just finding our product/market fit, and that will take some adjustment.
Y Combinator’s motto is “Make something people want.”
I believe we’ve done that, based on our initial signups. I also think our product is really good, I haven’t had a single person say that they didn’t like the product in my exit interviews.
I really believe our product is incredible, if anything it just needs a few more features. If the problem is not the product or the market’s desire for it, what is it?
The first thing is that it’s only been a month, and that’s really early. Any data we have is probably not as statistically significant as it could be, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn anything.
It’s best to wait a little longer before making any big decisions, but some problems are obvious.
Our product needs to be easier to use
With any product, you don’t really know how people are going to use it until after you launch. Even beta testers only give you a foggy idea.
It’s also really hard to develop a product and have an objective view of it from the first-time user’s perspective. To us it was really easy to use, but we also developed the product.
When people started getting in there and using it, we realized we had to make some changes. We’ll be working hard to improve usability.
Launching to the wrong audience
We have an existing audience of developers, and Reactor is targeted at non-developers.
Most of the people who signed up wanted a really custom app, so it’s no surprise that our product didn’t work for them. Reactor is made for small businesses like churches and restaurants, not people who should be paying someone $50K to make their app.
However, we still feel that Reactor can work great for developers, so this one is a bit of a mystery to me. We are working hard on adding features for developers, and educating them on how to use Reactor.
We are also going to work on getting in front of churches and other small businesses that can really benefit from using our product.
Not enough features
Most app builders have every feature under the sun, so naturally that’s what people expect from Reactor.
I strongly believe you should launch as soon as you have an MVP, and that’s what we did. Our feature set can’t compare to other products out there, but we are banking on our deep WordPress integrations.
We have already pushed several major features and numerous updates and bug fixes since launch, so a lack of features won’t be the case for much longer.
Reaching product/market fit
We know our product is good, but maybe it’s priced or packaged incorrectly.
We are going to try some different pricing packages, paid setup, and whatever else we think people want. I still think our pricing is good, but maybe it’s our marketing that’s falling short.
This is hard
The truth is that business is hard.
Most people who have successful products didn’t get there overnight, and we won’t either. There’s a difficult process of finding product/market fit, and no one has a shortcut.
Even though our launch didn’t go as I had hoped, I still believe in our product and I know we’ll get there.