I founded DonorElf a little over 3 and a half years ago. It’s a SaaS product for missionaries who raise their own financial support to pay for their ministry and salary.
There’s a lot involved for missionaries to figure out which donors they need to be communicating with (e.g. send a thank you note to new donors, follow up with monthly donors that stopped giving, etc)
So DonorElf acts as a personal assistant for the missionary by analyzing their donations and letting the missionary know which donors they need to be communicating with.
I built it initially for my own benefit since I used to be with a missions organization and raised my own support. And it wasn’t long before others wanted to start using it, so I rewrote it so many organizations could use it, and that’s when I started bootstrapping DonorElf.
That’s a question I have thought about a lot as I’ve been working on DonorElf. And a question I had to ask myself even before that one is why charge for DonorElf at all?
I have a deep passion to help missionaries in their fundraising. I used to be a missionary myself and understand how overwhelming it can be.
Some people have pointed out why I don’t make DonorElf cheaper so I can help the missionaries out even more by not having them pay as much. And in the early days of working on DonorElf I was tempted to do this.
But I also realize if I don’t charge enough for DonorElf, then it’s not going to be worth my time, and as my life gets busier with a growing family, I would eventually stop working on it and abandon it. And it’s for this reason that I have no problem charging for DonorElf. I want DonorElf to be the best app for missionaries to help them raise support. And that means I need to charge so it is worth my time and so eventually I can go full time on it.
So I charge for DonorElf to make it the best app possible, and now to get to your question about how much of a ‘good living’ do I plan on making from DonorElf.
My first goal is to go full time on it, which I have no problem with. But after I am able to go full time and say it really takes off and I’m able to make a million a year on it. In that case I do plan to still charge for DonorElf and my plan is to have a set salary like you mentioned and give the extra money away. I’m actually already doing that since I’m currently working a full time job and have the income from DonorElf, we have extra money and give a lot away. And that makes it a lot of fun to work on DonorElf since we’re able to bless others.