One year has passed since I decided to create a pro version of FunRetro (the free version was already running for 2 years and a half). When I first started FunRetro back in June 2015 I never thought I would create a real product and I would come this far but here we are.
This past year was very intense and I learned a lot from it, so here it's a short timeline of everything that happened.
On November 27 2017 I launched the pro version of FunRetro. The launch was very soft and I didn't do much marketing. It was a very simple version but functional. It had only the basic functionality and it was also missing some things like sending emails to invited members.
My key goal was to launch a MVP fast, get users feedback and iterate rapidly from it.
Trip to Asia
In April 10 I went to Indonesia and Thailand for 2 months and a half so I could travel and work at the same time. My idea was to work from coworkings that are famous for the digital nomad scene (Hubud and Dojo Bali) and that I could learn from people there.
First 100 customers and the change to Paddle
In the beginning FunRetro was using Paypal as a payment service. Paypal subscriptions has a very bad user experience, people need to create a Paypal account to subscribe. Despite that I managed to get my first 100 customers but I knew it needed to change.
So I started looking for an alternative, I couldn't use Stripe because of the country I'm from, so after some research and with the help from Indie Hackers I discovered Paddle. I changed on April 20 and it was one of the best decisions I could have done.
This is the view of the place I was staying in Bali when I had the first meeting with Paddle:
Hubud and Think Thank
Hubud was definitely the best coworking experience that I had. People there are very nice, helpful and wanted to share the knowledge all the time. The place had a community spirit to it, with events, meetups, activities almost daily.
FunRetro participated on the first online Think Thank that Hubud did on May 23. I presented a challenge that I had with FunRetro. I got really good feedback from people that attended and it was a nice experience overall.
In August I applied to Startup School and was very happy that FunRetro got accepted. Startup School is an online free course provided by Y Combinator. I learned a lot from the experience, the best part was the weekly catchup meetings with a mentor from Y Combinator. On this meeting I learned to track one main metric on a weekly basis. This is a very good habit for a company. Another positive thing was the online classes that they shared on youtube, very good content on how to create a startup, how to grow, etc...
End of the Year Results
So 2018 has almost ended and FunRetro has now around 5K MRR, 230 paid customers and 120k/month visitors. I am very happy with these results and I am going continue work to improve it next year.
I'm very grateful for what I have accomplished with FunRetro so far. This year would not be possible without the help of the following people/mentors: Paulo Caroli, Joaquim Torres, Haseeb Awan and Daniel Weinmann.
In 2018 I spent almost 2 thirds of it working with freelance + FunRetro, and only 1 third working full-time for FunRetro. In 2019 I will change that and work full-time for FunRetro. I hope this will allow me to improve the product even more and to get it to the next level.
My plans are also to share more what I am learning from this experience so I can give back to the community.
Thanks and happy new year!