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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly - An Update To My April Challenge

The last week has been a bit up and down for my April Challenge.  Here's a breakdown.
The Good
I've been contacted about three group orders this month of varying sizes.  The first two are done deals.  The accounts are setup and the invoices are in the email. It may take some time to get the check, but they'll come.  These two were both modest size, right around $1k combined. 
Taken separately either one of these would count as completing my challenge, but my intent was to increase single user sales, so I'm not counting them.  Things are looking pretty dim on that front (see The Bad and The Ugly).
The other group deal is very early, but potentially one of the biggest I've been in discussion for.  I estimate anywhere from $10k to $100k. There is still a long way to go and pretty much everything needs to come up Matt for me to pull this off.

April Challenge: Email Survey Results

One of the first steps of my April Challenge was to send two survey emails. The first was to users who paid for the premium service since the beginning of the year. The second group was users who signed up for the trial, but gave up and haven't returned to the site in at least two weeks. The emails went out a week ago. These are the results.
Paying Users
There were 410 people in this group.  They all received the same email.
Subject: PlanbookEdu Feedback - Win a $25 Amazon.com Gift Card
Text:

Hi {email},Earlier this year you signed up for PlanbookEdu.com. We hope that your experience with the program has been positive and we've made your lesson planning easier.
We would like to know what you feel has been the most valuable benefit of using PlanbookEdu.

April Challenge: Match Last April's Sales in a Single Day

April is traditionally the worst month of the year for my online planbook business. So far this year I'm seeing about 4x increase over the same month in 2010. So I could just accept that April will get a nice bump, but still only be 1% of my yearly revenue (I had to round up to get to 1%). Nah, forget that.
The Challenge
In April 2010 there were 14 sales totaling $280. I've already had 16 orders in the first 4 days of the month, so just beating that isn't enough. My goal is to beat that revenue number in a single day.  It can be any day of the month, so that gives me 30 chances...well 26 chances since the month is already 4 days old and I haven't done it yet.

HTML5 Chainsaw For Destroying Lame April Fools' Jokes

In the past (see below) I've participated in April Fools' jokes, but this year I'm going the other way.
Drag the image below to your bookmarks bar and you've got yourself an HTML5 chainsaw for destroying lame April Fools' jokes. Or just click to activate on this page. Use your left mouse button to cut away the page.
Mr Cutty

How I'd Spice Up The TechStars Startup Madness Tourney

Starting next week TechStars will be holding a March Madness-esq elimination tournament for startups. There will be 64 startups going head-to-head over 6 rounds with the winner advancing until only one remains. Who wins will be determined solely by voting on the site This or That.
The premise is simple and it should be entertaining (here's my entry - retweet support appreciated). I think it could be better though.  Here's what I'd change.

Odd A/B Test Results

A few months ago I got a Grasshopper 800 number. At the time I just stuck it in the footer. A week ago I decided to make the number more prominent, figuring it would help earn the trust of new users. I was going to just make the change, but decided to A/B test it for kicks. Turns out the change wasn't very good. Anyone care to take a stab at explaining these results?
 

Remembering Site A Month 5 Years Later

On March 1st, 2006 I started my first blog. It was called Site A Month (siteamonth.com - domain spam now). The goal was to produce a new "site" each month. Some of the projects didn't end up as actual sites, so the name ended up not being that great. The goal was to try new technologies, so not actually producing a site for a month didn't mean failure.
All the posts have been moved to this blog. You can see them if you scroll back far enough in the archives. They are truly awful, so don't do it. Here's the first post which covers the "Mission Statement".

Supporting Over 2000 Customers On The Side

One of the questions I'm frequently asked is how I support 2000 paying customers for my business while working a full time job. In general it actually doesn't take much time. During my busy season (Aug to Oct) I get around 15 emails a day. It can be a bit overwhelming. The rest of the year it's closer to 1-2 emails a day. Here are some of the tactics I use.
Email
My System
Most of the support requests come in over email. I don't use a service to handle or track these other than Gmail. My system is to leave an email in the inbox and archive it once I've responded. The "Send & Archive" button, which can be turned on in Gmail Labs, is helpful here.
Response Time
I try to reply to emails as soon as possible, but that can be tricky when I'm at work. Pretty much anytime I have a few minutes I'll check my phone and respond if it's something I know off the top of my head.

Supporting Over 2000 Customers On The Side

One of the questions I'm frequently asked is how I support 2000 paying customers for my business while working a full time job. In general it actually doesn't take much time. During my busy season (Aug to Oct) I get around 15 emails a day. It can be a bit overwhelming. The rest of the year it's closer to 1-2 emails a day. Here are some of the tactics I use.
Email
My System
Most of the support requests come in over email. I don't use a service to handle or track these other than Gmail. My system is to leave an email in the inbox and archive it once I've responded. The "Send & Archive" button, which can be turned on in Gmail Labs, is helpful here.
Response Time
I try to reply to emails as soon as possible, but that can be tricky when I'm at work. Pretty much anytime I have a few minutes I'll check my phone and respond if it's something I know off the top of my head.

Where My Customers Came From in 2010

In previous posts I've shown how much I revenued last year and how much was a result of AdWords spending. Since AdWords only accounted for 23% of revenue we need to figure out where the rest came from.
Organic
Search engine traffic accounts for a big portion of the remaining revenue. I'll break it up into two groups. One for searches from people who were searching for the site by name and one for people searching by keywords.

TypeOrdersRevenue

By Name
185
$3700

By Keyword
516
$10,320

Total
701
$14,020

By Search Engine
For fun here's the numbers broken down by search engine.