Changing direction: when to make the decision

I find myself in a difficult position with an app that I’ve been working on on-and-off for a few years. It sells 10-15 copies / $1000 a month. It’s very much a part time thing, as I’ve kept the day job throughout.

But I’ve never been able to increase sales above this level. Users are happy but not passionate (apart from the obligatory few who rave about it). Users typically rate the app around 7 out of 10 in terms of how important it is to them.

I’ve had a lot of really good sales and marketing advice and help over the past couple of years, but this hasn’t translated into sales. I no longer believe a strong market exists and I don’t have confidence that I have proper product / market fit.

I’m considering a big change in direction, moving away from the niche consumer market I’m currently chasing and towards a business / dev product that would occupy a similar space technically but a very different space in the market. A huge pivot basically.

But it’s a big step to walk away from that $1000 a month, even though the money is small when stacked up against my salary. Many would consider that $1000 and the continued sales to be a sort of success, but I don’t see it that way.

Has anyone here abandoned or pivoted on a product that was bringing in money like this? Did you find it a tough decision to make? And did you have any success with the new direction?


Can your product run on autopilot, or does it require significant day to day involvement on your part? If you’re considering a pivot, maybe you can leave the existing product as it is, earning $1000, and create a new brand, web site, etc. for the B2B market. Existing B2C brand wouldn’t help anyway, if it’s a very different thing software will be used for. I imagine “Word for stamp collectors” and “Word for lawyers”. It would help the discussion if you’d shared more info about product, but perhaps you don’t want customers to find about abandoning what they’re about to buy.

I had two products that didn’t live up to expectations. I shut down one of them because support efforts didn’t justify revenue. But another one is kept on autopilot, with minimal involvement on my part. Revenue is also minimal, but I have plans which might improve that in the future.

It could be easier with B2B, you don’t need hundreds of sales to make it worthwhile. Especially if it’s kind of product where some company could buy tens or hundreds of licenses.


Yes, the product can quite easily sit there and coast along. It’s primarily desktop based, so there’s little to none day to day work and no midnight crisis issues.The only issue with letting it sit idle is that there is a user forum with a small number of active users, and the lack of activity would be noticed after a couple of months. But compared to shutting it down completely that’s a small thing.

A second website and product, separate from the consumer app sounds about right.