Subworthy: Thoughts after launching on Product Hunt
Since writing this I have chosen to shut down Subworthy.
Yesterday I made a spur-of-the-moment to launch Subworthy on Product Hunt. I finished up the day placed a respectable 15th out of a total of 37 products launched, and whilst I only received 27 upvotes (the #1 un-promoted product received 760) every single one of them was greatly appreciated.
As I watched the first users (other than myself) start to use the product I started to see opportunities for simple and obvious improvements, as well as validation for some of the larger ideas I had for the platform. I soon realised that I had plenty more to share about Subworthy, and was keen to start doing just that.
The Subworthy Blog
I quickly span up this blog and copied across my original announcement post from my personal blog. The plan is to make this the place to share all of the latest news and features. Rather than have a dedicated email newsletter sent out to users I figured it would be easier to just hook into Subworthy's functionality and have these posts included in users' daily email issues.
I always planned to build Subworthy in public once it hit the MVP stage. Now that it has, I will be maintaining a public changelog on this site (and ultimately, a roadmap/feature request function).
I had always planned to offer Subworthy free of charge with very little limitation. It was just before I posted to Product Hunt that I started to doubt myself and added the possibility of a paid tier right off the bat. I read some articles eschewing the idea of offering your product for free - the usual "if you're not paying for a product, you are the product" rhetoric (which, for the record, I do agree with). So I launched with a limit of ten feed sources per account - but in reality this is an artificial limitation on the system. It doesn't cost more in terms of resources to maintain a subscription to, say, 20 feeds. The value - as I find with my own usage of Subworthy - is subscribing to many feeds so that every daily issue is guaranteed to have something different.
I'm rolling back my decision to limit the number of feeds users can subscribe to. It feels like the right thing for the product, and any plans for monetisation down the track can take a different tack.
Two activities that I have noticed haven't been as accessible as they perhaps could be is feed discovery and delivery configuration.
Users can choose when they want to receive their daily email, localised to their timezone. This isn't immediately obvious, so I plan to make it much more accessible over the coming weeks.
Secondly, to a novice subscribing to RSS feeds can be a little hit-and-miss. Not every site has an RSS or Atom feed (even the ones that you would expect to), and if you're used to consuming your media via the likes of Twitter and Facebook, it may be hard to know where to start. As Subworthy slowly gets more users I have plans to offer suggestions based on popular feeds already on the system, as well as some how-to posts on this blog.