Year 2: Bootstrapping our SaaS to $30K MRR
2 years in, here's what we learned from bootstrapping our no-code form builder Tally.
In October 2020 we launched our no-code form builder Tally. Today, 2 years later, we are still a proudly bootstrapped team of 2 co-founders with a profitable business funded by the subscription fees paid by our users.
We share our love for Tally with a passionate community of over 50.000 creators worldwide and just recently reached the $30K MRR milestone!
On our second birthday we are beyond happy with our journey so far. In this post we'll look back on what we've learned and the challenges ahead of us.
If we haven't met before, here's a recap of our journey:
|Sept. 2020||$0K||How we ended up building a no-code tool|
|Mar. 2021||$1K||From MVP to Product Hunt launch|
|Oct. 2021||$5K||Bootstrapping to $5K MRR and 11K users|
|Dec. 2021||$8K||Wrapping up 2021|
|Feb. 2022||$10K||Bootstrapping to $10K MRR and 20K users|
|Jun. 2022||$20K||Growing from $10K to $20k MRR|
|Oct. 2022||$30K||We're here |
And the resources we shared along the way:
What did we learn?
After year 1 we pinpointed the 3 ingredients of our growth recipe:
- Tally is free: because Tally is largely free, our product has become our biggest marketing channel (this is how our growth flywheel works).
- Tally is simple: As we add more functionality the product needs to stay accessible and easy-to-use, resulting in a better UX and less customer support.
- We are Tally: We're building Tally in public and share our highs and lows as we grow. We also personally answer every question asked by our users within the day. Being transparent and having a continuous feedback loop helps us to gain trust and build long-lasting relationships with our users.
Keeping Tally free, open and simple is what got us this far and we're confident that these 3 principles will help us make the right decisions as we're entering the next phase of our growth.
The challenges ahead
While the first 2 years were all about finding new users and doing things that don't scale, our growing user base is now presenting us with a whole new set of challenges.
Scaling customer support
Whether it's replying to Slack messages, emails or Twitter DM's, we personally answer our users within the day. Providing personal support and having a continuous feedback helps us tremendously in understanding what our users want and it currently takes around 50% of our time.
We aim to document all questions we receive and worked on optimizing the structure and searchability of our help center. In the future we want to make our support content more accessible by publishing feature requests, enabling public upvoting, publishing useful Slack conversations and creating more detailed tutorials for the technical features.
However, to keep our response time short and keep a finger on the pulse of our users we will hire an extra pair of hands on this front.
Keep scammers at bay
Because Tally is mostly free with no limits on form submissions, it also attracts abusers who engage in malicious activities: creating phishing forms for example. We don't want to compromise on our free tier by introducing limits, so a growing amount of our time goes into blocking scammers and finding new ways to prevent abuse.
Keep on improving our product at a high pace
As our user base grows, more and more time goes into customer support, moderation and administration. This leaves us with little time to spend on actually building and improving the product. We are planning to hire an engineer to help out Filip on the product front so we can keep on delivering on our promise to build the simplest, yet most powerful form builder out there.
What's next for Tally?
We got to this point by following our own path and sticking to our values of keeping Tally simple, free and putting our users first. We will continue to follow this strategy, while taking the first steps towards scaling Tally's team. We hope this will result in more headspace for strategic thinking, marketing experiments and overall product improvements.
If you want to become a part of our story, don't hesitate to say hi at email@example.com.
Happy 2nd birthday Tally, onwards and upwards 🚀
Marie & Filip