14 months to $5,000 MRR ๐Ÿ“ˆ

Yes, it is possible for a solo developer to build a profitable Micro-SaaS and quit their job. But how much time it usually takes?

I picked a random set of 20 startups built by solo founders in the range of $5,000-$100,000 MRR and looked at how quickly they reached the initial $5k/mo.

Why $5,000/month?

While it depends on the circumstances (where you live, do you have a family to support, etc), I think this amount of MRR lets you at least buy food and pay rent.

But this is revenue, not profit!

Yes, but the only expense for a solo founder is often the server rent, which is not a significant amount (in most cases revenue ~= profit.)

14 months!

We see that it took a median of 14 months to reach $5,000 MRR. Not too bad, isnโ€™t it? If you could know that it takes the next 14 months to reach $5k MRR, would you do it?

Founders in the making

When we see solo founders reaching $5,000/month in 7 months or so, we usually donโ€™t see what was happening before starting this particular SaaS.

Founders were often working on their previous projects that didnโ€™t work out but eventually led to a startup that did.

I asked some of these microfounders about their first independent project:

"If, by โ€™first indie projectโ€™, you mean my all time first project, Iโ€™d say around ... 2005, but itโ€™s hard to say which month." โ€“ Cyril from ๐Ÿ•Š PDFShift (12 months to $5,000/mo, currently $7,100/mo)

"I started my first indie business in Dec 2012 and I still own/run it. I actually originally built Lasso because my existing business needed it." โ€“ Andrew from ๐ŸŒต Lasso (9 months to $5,000/mo, currently $9,500/mo)

"Hypefury was my first. :)" โ€“ Samy from ๐Ÿฆ Hypefury (8 months to $5,000/mo, currently $22,000/mo)

Work on something you like

When we see that it usually takes years to make the founder that reaches $5,000/mo in a year, what is there left to do right now?

Thereโ€™s only one thing left to do right now โ€“ to work on something that you like.

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