Well, I just woke up on the 26th and checked my mail, and it seems I’ve now sold 100 copies of Bingo Card Creator on the dot (since launching the program — not, regrettably, since December 1st).  Yay.  Aside from being great fun and a nice learning experience, thats about $1500 or so that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.  Not a shabby bit of money, as my newly paid-off student loan can attest.

Its not quite New Years yet but I thought I’d go ahead and set some business goals for the New Year:

1)  Release BCC v1.05 sometime in the month of January.  On the list of stuff to accomplish:

  • Fix minor printing niggles when you only have numeric “words” on the card.
  • Add Halloween/Christmas bingo to get ready for next year (low priority).
  • Improve printing of word lists to allow more than 25 words on them (done already on local machine).
  • Give option for advanced users to select printer (done already on local machine).
  • Make sure its Vista compatible.  This will probably involve changing on Windows boxes where I drop the serial key, user name, and timestamp for the last program update.  Oh, and I should move the document folder to My Documents, too.
  • Let people put in column headers (B-I-N-G-O or configurable).
  • Option for headers/footers, at least for single cards on a page.

2)  Retool the website.

  • Improve purchasing.htm so it makes the sales presentation better.
  • Eliminate eSellerate.net.  I have yet to be paid from a single sale from them, due to low volume, and having the option there when no one uses it needlessly complicates things.
  • Create a version (or versions) of the website which broadens the niche a wee bit from teachers.  Most of my search traffic these days is coming in for bingo stuff rather than teaching stuff, might as well oblige them.
  • Resume some content-writing SEO activities.
  • Blog some stuff of use to folks, out of my totally charitable desire to collect free links improve the sum of human knowledge.
  • Spend some time reaquainting myself with Adwords and AdCenter to see if I can’t squeeze a little more juice out of the turnip.  In particular, AdWords is still at $.40-$.45 a conversion and I want to fight that down to $.30 again.

3)  And some financial goals:

  • $1,000 a month in sales by April
  • Yearly sales of $10,000.
  • Maxxing a Roth-IRA from self employment (I am not eligible for any IRA normally as I don’t pay taxes in the US due to the Foreign Earned Income Exemption.  Incidentally, if you are a US taxperson, you run a uISV as a hobby,  and you don’t have an IRA, for the love of all that is holy fix that this year.)
  • Get legal in Japan (I am so NOT looking forward to those forms) and at least one American state.  The Japanese taxman “Oh, thats just a hobby, don’t worry about it” immunity phases out at 1 million yen (at 120 yen to the dollar thats about US$8,300) and I’d like to have stuff squared away by then.  Additionally, a legal entity in the US for my software company will make launching a more amibitious product much easier.
  • A wee bit more robustness from sales when the teaching market isn’t in a buying mood (wait a few days for my December stats, you’ll see what I mean).  In particular, I don’t really want to see income drop to $0 over the summer months (particularly because I have a move coming up in August and won’t be able to save as much from my day job as I usually can).

Other stuff:

  • Locate a new day job by August.  My contract on the current job is expiring and while its been a wonderful three years its time to part ways.  My current thought is employment somewhere in the Nagoya area.
  • Start a new, more ambitious uISV project.  I’ve got a thought for one at the moment but am wondering if the market is big enough (think “consumer finance” and a ticket price, uh, a wee bit above $24.95).
  • Continue search for Ms. Right.