Issue#73: Building $1K - $10K MRR Micro SaaS products around Freelancer ecosystem - Part 1
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No fluffy content. If your goal is to build a $100m ARR business, this is not the right post. Here I am are NOT going to talk about building the next Facebook or Twitter. If your goal is to make a $1K to $10K MRR, continue reading.
This post will cover one SAAS area and talk about multiple niches in this space. This post also explains how to do tech implementation, do market analysis, how the current players are doing, and ends with a cost analysis to understand the overall cost for 100 users.
This is ‘Part-1’ of the ‘Building $1K - $10K MRR Micro SaaS products around Freelancer ecosystem’
Let’s see some of the products in this niche.
FunnelCRM: Never miss closing a deal, or following up with a customer again. Whether you run a small business or a solo freelancer, if you have a website with a contact form, Funnel can help you be as efficient as possible with your sales process.
Ruttl: Reduce website review time to half. 7000+ teams and freelancers use Ruttl daily as their website feedback tool.
SuperCreative: Based in Paris, France, Supercreative designs digital tools and videos to help freelancers make a living from their ideas.
Cogency: Collaborative solution to run business on single platform. Growing online business and maintaining business relationships is much easier with Cogency. Launched in 2021, Cogency has about 2000 active users by March, 2022 and has a good conversion to paid users.
CyberLeads: Agencies, freelancers and consultants can find new clients and close big deals.
Freelance Notion: The Business Operating System for Freelancers. Position services, attract customers, close business and build passive income streams with Freelance Notion.
HolaBrief: Supercharge client discovery process. Streamline briefing, intake and strategy in one place, so people can create standout work in less time.
FluxAcademy: Learn the art & business of web design. Create a successful and fulfilling career as a freelance web designer. Generated $3M in revenues.
PomoFocus: Pomofocus is a customizable pomodoro timer. The aim of this app is to help you focus on any task you are working on, such as study, writing, or coding. Got 1000 paid subscribers in 2 years.
CushionApp: Forecasting for freelancers Cushion will help you predict your unpredictable schedule and stabilize your fluctuating income.
PuzzlApps: Puzzl is built for productized services, freelancers, studios, collectives, and all other independents looking to work better.
FreeUp: Hire pre-vetted freelancers. Get more done faster.
Toptal: Toptal is an exclusive network of the top freelance software developers, designers, finance experts, product managers, and project managers in the world. Top companies hire Toptal freelancers for their most important projects.
Planarty: Time Management Solution for Freelancers and Small business owners.
🔒 👉 [In Pro] See who is making $10K+ per month with tools for freelancers.
🔒 👉 [In Pro] See which company generated $40K revenue in 5 days from Website Feedback Tool
🔒 👉 [In Pro] See which company, founded in 2010, is making $100 million/year from freelance platform.
🔒 👉 [In Pro] See which company crossed $300K per year in revenue from their platform for agencies, freelancers and consultants .
🔒 👉 [In Pro] See which company’s estimated revenue is $40K per month from CRM for freelancers and small businesses
Negative Nancy says - “Freelancing is dead as full-time remote jobs taking over the world”
Me - While the remote full-time jobs are exponentially increasing - ‘A remote full-time job is not equal to freelancing’. Typically, freelancing gives more freedom than full-time. In 2021, 59 million people were doing freelance work in the United States. This is an increase from 2014 when about 53 million people were freelancing. The number of freelancers in the U.S. has been increasing since 2014.
Deep-dive & Some niches
The concept of freelancers has developed a lot over the past years. Freelancers have become a significant part of the global workforce. There are many reasons why freelancing is becoming so popular. Many people prefer freelance jobs because they are flexible enough for them to work from home and enjoy a high degree of autonomy. Since there are so many advantages associated with freelancing, it is no wonder that more and more people choose to live by this.
Let’s see some of the niches around the Freelance ecosystem - The tools needed by Freelancers or the tools used by Freelancers.
Freelancer Invoice tools: For Freelancers, there is more to invoicing than just billing and getting paid. There are many benefits invoicing software can provide. It can help freelancers streamline business operations and improve financial management. Create a SaaS solution for sending invoices to clients, receiving payments, and syncing to freelancers’ accounting systems like Xero, etc. For freelancers, this is a big issue to sort out. If they are using marketplaces like Fiverr or Upwork, it gets taken care of automatically. But there are thousands of freelancers who are not part of marketplaces and work on their own. For these freelancers, there is a great need for invoice generations tools. PayPod which provides online invoicing software for freelancers crossed $1100 MRR.
Marketplace for Freelancers/Vetted Freelancers: Normal freelancer marketplaces like Fiverr and Upwork are meant for general freelancers and caters to a much bigger market. A vetted freelance marketplace is meant for vetted freelancers. There is a lot of demand for freelance and vetted marketplace. A vetted marketplace is a premium version of a normal freelance market. This can be extended and drilled down to specific niches as well. While there are a lot of marketplace products for freelancers in general, you could start A must-read story from Moonlight Developers if you want to build something around this space. See the story of Flexiple and how they just operate with Google sheets and still making one million dollars in revenue with now complex tools. Niche down your marketplace as narrow as you can. Start with any specific niche - for example - a vetted marketplace only for designers or only for react developers or only for frontend developers. You can drill down to a location as well. For example, UnicornFactory is meant for freelancers from New Zealand. Still wondering if you should consider building a marketplace. See the latest update about Linked in reportedly building a freelance marketplace to beat Upwork and Fiverr.
A freelance system that runs on Notion: ‘Notion’ has become the new normal for everyone. Create an information product, checklist document, and process-related document using Notion and sell it via Gumroad. See Newsletter OS (Newsletter operating system)- an entire Newsletter publishing document built on Notion document as a dashboard and is sold via Gumroad. This product made $20K USD in 3 months. There are more and more information/dashboard/checklist products built using the Notion document. For example, similar OS(Operating system document) products for Podcast publishing and Freelance dashboard are coming up. See Podcast publishing OS that already got 100+ copies sold - just a simple checklist/dashboard product built using Notion. So, build a simple Notion document around a Freelancing guide, freelancing process, sending proposals, how-to guides, to-dos, tools, invoice generators, ways to capture client testimonials, project trackers, etc. All of these should just run in a single Notion doc.
Freelancers Proposal Tools: A good proposal significantly increases the chances of getting a project awarded for freelancers. High-end clients typically look for a formal proposal process and related docs to get approval done. Create a SaaS tool that helps freelancers draft proposals, create proposal templates, and send proposals to customers. The tool should allow to edit/update of a proposal and track the changes done by the freelancer/client to the proposal document. You can further improve this with proposal writing tools based on AI, beautiful proposal templates, and a dashboard to see/edit/send proposals. See Prospero in this space that got acquired in 2018.
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Learn technical pointers on how to build products around this niche.
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Learn Marketing pointers on how to start marketing the products for this niche. This should give you a marketing head start.
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Cost Analysis for 100 customers
Learn how much it costs to build a product in this niche and cater to 100 customers.
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