John Jago

Day 78: June reflection as a bootstrapped founder

June was the third full month of working on my own projects to make a living.

I continued focusing on Dashify, a WordPress plugin, because I figured I’ll have the greatest chance at success if I spend all my time on a single project versus splitting it between multiple bets as others have done. It just doesn’t make sense to spend time on something else when I’m getting positive signs from Dashify every few days, whether it’s growth in active installs or reviews from people.


Here’s how things went in June:

Hours spent

Each month I keep track of how many hours I spent working on certain projects. Right now, I have three categories: Dashify, Writing, and Other.

Here are the numbers for June:

Writing includes these posts and anything else I write for my blog. Other includes touching up non-Dashify projects or my blog’s design. Any work directly contributing to Dashify, whether writing code or a blog post for the Dashify website, I count as time spent on Dashify.

Compared to previous months, this month was the most I’ve ever spent working on Dashify. My time spent writing and working on other projects decreased, which is kind of what I was going for.

Averaging it out to a five day workweek, I spent about 3.22 (deep work) hours per day on Dashify. In July, I could try averaging at least 4 hours per day to ensure that I can build out the features people have been asking for in Dashify Pro.

Building out the Dashify Pro portal

I spent most of my development time this month building the portal for Dashify Pro. I chose to create it from scratch—albeit with the help of Laravel and its starter kits for making a dashboard and payment system—to avoid the high fees from pre-built services. I calculated that it will pay off in the coming months as Dashify Pro starts to make money.

Improvements to the free version of Dashify

At the end of the month, I worked on the free version of Dashify a little, fixing a bug and making the order view more customizable when Dashify is turned on.

Start of the first major Dashify Pro feature

With the Dashify Pro portal and basic plugin setup out of the way, I also began work on the first major feature for Dashify Pro, which is something I’m really excited about. I’ll share more about this in the coming posts and include screenshots.

Enough to make a living?

At this point I can’t really tell the trajectory, so I’ve decided that I’ll spend all of July building out features that there’s clearly been demand for and see if the number of paying customers can increase by 60, like the number of free users did in June. If there are 60 paying customers by the end of the month, that would be a very good sign to keep on going.

👋 This is my work journal, a series where I write daily about trying to make a living building a bootstrapped software product.