Shipped My First SaaS Side Project While Working Full Time

This is a digest of the story of Tigran Hakobyan who shipped his first SaaS as a side project, while working full time at Buffer. There are other stories like this one but I like this one because it’s straightforward and realistic.

Mr Hakobyan started to think about multi-stream income to be less dependent of his main income (his job at the time).


Mr Hakobyan already had a lot of ideas he kept in his notes. For his future business, he wanted an idea that

  • solves a real problem (one you personally have)
  • is in a market he knows well
  • should not be a new idea (not world changing)
  • could become a viable business


Mr Hakobyan shipped the MVP in two months. It seems like a long time but he didn’t “hustle” and instead worked only 1-2 hours every day and slept at least 8 hours (ideas echoed by DHH in his talk at Startup School). He also kept a strict routine instead of “cramming”.

One good tips is to keep the objectives small to be able to finish at least one task a day. Seeing progress also helps with motivation.

Closed Beta Launch

After announcing the beta launch on Twitter, several people came forward to test the product. This permits to have early on feedback.

Public Launch

After incorporating some feedback and fixing bugs, the public launch was announced three months in.

Lesson learned

Except for the points already mentioned above, Mr Hakobyan gives a last great advice:

Talk about your project. Because you have to get the word out and market your project. That’s the only way oters will discover it in the beginning.

Source: How I shipped my first SaaS side-project while working full-time (archive)