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A couple of beta testers have asked me why I don't host Mockups on balsamiq.com as a ad-based or subscription-based niche Web 2.0 app.
First let me get the "advertising-based" part out of the way: ad based business models for startups make me laugh. Ad-based business models only work if you have MASSIVE traffic numbers, so all the startups that say "we'll be ad-based" really mean "we hope a big player will buy us". Luckily I feel like that insanity is drying out. Not to mention that ads are annoying, look unprofessional and get totally tuned out unless they are useful to you (i.e. you are in the "I'm looking for answers" mode). Ok rant over.
As for subscription-based, my short answer is: I can't afford to.
Lots of startups today don't realize that hosting a web app on your site is a lot of work:
That said, I have lots of ideas of what a community site powered by Mockups could be. Interface architects giving each other feedback on UI's usability, a rating system, templates, designers iterating on designs with customers through my site, etc. Maybe one day...but now I can't afford to.
So what should you do if you really want to use mockups but don't have Confluence/Jira or another Web Offiuce platform? You can use the Mockups Live demo version, export your mockups as XML and email that to your friends/customers. They'll be able to import the XML, see your mockup, tweak it and send it back. I know, it's not ideal, but it works. Working that way is not a lot of work for you and not a lot of work for me. I think that's a fair deal.
Next time: why don't I sell Mockups Desktop for $30 a pop?
Peldi for the Balsamiq Team
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Hi Robert. Two things:
1. customers really REALLY wanted it 🙂
2. the revenue grew enough for me to be able to hire enough people to run and support a SaaS app.
Why did you change your mind, Peldi? 🙂
We just launched a very simple app specifically for hosting mockups. It’s called mocklinkr.com.
In 3 bullets
1) Hosted: we host your mockups
2) Interactive: You can easily make them clickable to show the navigation between images
3) Feedback: From the published view clients can select regions and leave comments
Perhaps this will help out the people who are asking for this.
Vishu MockLinkr looks great!