What's your personal background? What motivated you to start your own company?
I started my career working in VC before going to business school and teaching myself to program. So, I'm mostly a business person but with a strong interest in technology.
I got into entrepreneurship simply because I had an overwhelming desire to. It's not a rational decision, especially if you can get a job in finance or big tech. Those are much higher expected value career paths with lower volatility. But, you only live once and I just loved the idea of creating something from scratch.
What no code tool(s) did you use to build SelectSoftware Reviews and what purpose did each play in the final product?
I use Bubble to power a specialized customer portal that I've built. This is a great framework that allows you to do just about anything without having to code. I also use Webflow as my CMS.
What were the initial costs to get SelectSoftware Reviews off the ground?
Extremely minimal. I may have spent $300-500 initially, but not much more than that. The biggest cost of course was my time. I had decided to devote at least 6 months to this project no matter what happened. Trust me, I wanted to quit a few times when things weren't really working. But, at the end of the six months, I had some small traction that encouraged me to keep going.
What was the process of building your product from idea to launching?
I tried around a dozen different approaches to tackling the problem of helping HR find/buy software. Some of these were MVP's via a form, or a blog post, or a website. I simply tried to find the key breaking point for each iteration and design a test to see how much friction there was in getting people to adopt my take. You have to be objective in this stage and kill things that are clearly meeting resistance from your potential users/customers.
How do you attract customers?
I try really hard to be smart when it comes to HR technology. This means lots of HR Tech buyers go to my website to do research. It also means that HR Tech vendors ask me for advice, or see what I'm doing and want to associate their brand with it. I have done a bit of outbound, but a lot of my customers have come to me first.
What are the biggest challenges you've overcome building SelectSoftware Reviews?
I'm a solo founder and that comes with a host of mental health challenges. So, I am very diligent about working out, meditating, getting sunlight, eating right, and social interactions. If I can do all that, then the ups and downs of entrepreneurship don't rock me as hard as when I'm mentally depleted from lack of sleep or exercise.
What's your advice for non-technical people who want to start a company?
What are your future plans for SelectSoftware Reviews?
I want to make it the number one place people go to research HR software online. This means lots more research and creative ways to help the buying process that we haven't even thought of yet!
How do you think the rise of no code tools will impact entrepreneurship?
It's going to lead to more and more niche bootstrapped companies that will be really good at solving a particular problem that a small amount of people have. I think we'll see many $100k - $2mm profit companies in this space over the next 10 years arise.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
When you're first starting out in entrepreneurship, try to be as action oriented as you can. No one knows what will work or not until you try it out!