How did I earn my first 2,000 yuan from my independently developed simple resume?

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From 0 to 1: My road to product profitability

Hello everyone, I am Zhang Xuan, the founder of Simple Resume. November 7th is a memorable day for me because my product profit reached 2,000 yuan. Although this number is not large, it is the most exciting income in my life. Here, I would like to share the gains, experiences and lessons learned in this process.

On the road to product profitability, I think there are three key points. First, make it clear from the beginning how much the product will be charged. This is a point I have emphasized in previous articles. Don’t think about attracting eyeballs and traffic first, and then exploring the profit model. For an independently developed product, the key charging points must be found from the beginning. For example, my simple resume application clarifies the difference between premium members and ordinary members from the beginning. In particular, only premium members can download resumes in PDF format. This feature is currently the biggest demand for charging.

Secondly, don’t make unethical money. Before the user makes a payment, key points such as the payment amount, duration, and whether to automatically renew must be clearly written. Don’t hide fees, don’t induce consumption, don’t make false claims in publicity, don’t plagiarize or maliciously attack others, and don’t sell user data. In today's society, adhering to the bottom line of a product is a very important advantage.

Finally, make your product look like that. In addition to the main functions, you also need to prepare rich peripheral content. It takes a lot of courage for users to pay directly on an unfamiliar website. Don’t let users feel that your product is crude and they may run away at any time after reading it. In addition to the main editing functions, my product also prepares rich content such as resume writing guides, update records, roadmaps, etc., so that users can feel that we are building a serious, long-term product.

Now let’s talk about how the income of 2,000 yuan was obtained. From August 19 to November 9, the overall profit showed an upward trend. It was 552 yuan in August, 574 yuan in September, 762 yuan in October, and 280 yuan as of the 9th in November. These revenues mainly come from our membership system, including monthly payment, annual payment and lifetime membership.

In order to measure product development more accurately, we use the indicator MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue). It spreads the cost of annual and lifetime memberships over each month. Judging from the data, our MRR is also continuing to grow, indicating that the product is developing healthily.

However, there are still some problems with our products in the paid model. Since domestic web-side products lack automatic monthly credit card deduction mechanisms like those in foreign countries, monthly paying users are often a one-time purchase, and few continue to subscribe. Therefore, we need to think about how to provide more and longer-lasting privileged functions to advanced users to make the charges more attractive.

One way to increase profitability is to increase traffic. After observing the statistics, we found that traffic and revenue are directly proportional. Next, I will share some quality traffic sources. The first is the traffic brought by personal branding. Establishing influence in your own circle can attract more target users. For example, I have more than 10,000 followers on Twitter and regularly share helpful posts, which brings a lot of traffic to the product.

The second is the cold start channel. For developers without any social influence, you can try some cold start channels to gain traffic. For example, V2EX is a community mainly composed of programmers. I posted here and received considerable traffic and user comments. In addition, you can also try other similar communities and platforms to promote your products.

In short, on the road to product profitability, we need to clarify charging points, adhere to the bottom line of ethics, make the product look professional and credible, and attract more users by increasing traffic. I hope my experience and lessons can be helpful to everyone.

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