My January Overview: Purchased a Company and Started Freelancing

Photo by Félix Lam on Unsplash

My January Overview: Purchased a Company and Started Freelancing

The complete financial overview of an indie developer and freelancer.

Overview of January

And that was it! My first month without an employer. December 31, 2021, I left my job as CTO, so today is exactly one month in. I don't know if you can call it an indie developer because it's not completely independent. My income this month consists entirely of freelancing.

At the bottom of this post is a breakdown of my income and expenses. I will be publishing this each month this year. What is not included here is the purchase of my new project. This one, in fact, is completed in 2021.

I will address a few points in this post:

  • My monthly project. Late last year, I announced that I wanted to develop 12 projects this year. This month's project is a special one.

  • Next month's project. I have been thinking in advance about the project I want to develop in February.

  • My freelancing overview. Here I go over the hours worked, my income (and expenses) and schedule.

  • My financial overview. This is the total overview of my current affairs this month.

Without further ado, let's get started!

Monthly project

My primary project this month is special. This is because I did not develop it myself, but purchased it on MicroAcquire. In fact, I wanted a project that was already validated and technically in order. If I want to work on 12 projects this year, I must also know something about marketing. So, I did the most unwise thing I could think of:

I bought a startup with the goal of growing it. Cronly currently has 4 customers who have been customers for years (0% churn, therefore), and collectively they have generated $74.62 in revenue this month (After transaction fees).

Because this month was about getting started, I haven't had the time to do as much with it as I would have liked. I adjusted the registration flow because I saw that many users were dropping out because of this. Also, I collected feedback from existing users. I will improve the product based on this.

Something else I'm starting in February is cold emailing. Cronly is interesting for indie developers, but there's no money to be made there. Cronly is free up to 5 monitors, and I'd like to keep it that way. I think it is important to give something back to the community.

So, where is the money to be made? At companies. Cronly is a typical B2B product, and the market I find most appealing is web development agencies. They maintain many customer websites and often have multiple processes running for them, such as creating backups, sending emails or processing payments. These are typical processes that, as a service provider, you want to be able to guarantee are working properly.

The pricing model is simple, and I think the product is also very attractive to these companies. The only problem is that they simply don't know Cronly. So, I am going to experiment with cold emailing.

Project of February

For next month, I already have an idea in mind that I can develop so quickly that I can develop the MVP just fine to validate my idea with potential users.

This is a B2B API to automatically redact sensitive data. It concerns documents and images with, for example, personnel data, address data, financial data, et cetera. A user may then upload these documents to the API and get them redacted, based on their preferences.

If you have any ideas about this, please let me know! Beta testers are always welcome!

Freelancing results

As indicated, my income comes almost entirely from freelancing this month. I unfortunately had to dump a client because it was a bad client. I worked very little, but then that was the purpose of my adventure. Fortunately, my monthly expenses are also low, so I can easily accommodate this.

I billed $3,746 this month (excluding VAT). For this, I worked a total of 56.5 hours. I did incur $1,226 in costs to a partner of mine who did some of this work. As a result, I end up with $2,520 net profit, for just over a week's work.

Financial overview

This month, I have the following income sources:

  • Cronly: $75
  • Freelancing: $3,746

I also had the following expenses:

  • Freelancer for Cronly: $50
  • Costs to keep Cronly running: $50
  • Freelancing costs: $1,226

So that results in a net profit of $2,495

Which I am pretty happy with for my first month.

How was your month?