Rishi Grows Pika to $700 MRR in Only 7 Months
Rishi Mohan is the founder of Pika - Instantly turn boring screenshots into beautiful images

Tell us about your product and what inspired you to start it?

So as a designer and app creator, I share a lot of my design work and work that I like on Twitter. I used to take a screenshot of these designs and beautified them in Figma to make them more presentable, it was a repetitive process to open these screenshots in Figma, select background colors, add shadow etc. and export it. On average I was spending like 20 to 30 minutes doing these screenshots, and so I thought I should just a build a simple app which can help me do this easily and quickly. 
That's when I thought it would be great to have a simple app that can do this for me quickly, and that's how Pika was born. Pika is aimed to convert boring screenshots into beautiful, presentable and high quality images, and Pika is intended to make this process as fast as possible. That's the problem I'm solving with Pika, it started with my personal use case but now it's been used by thousands of users and in different ways :)

How long did it take you to acquire your first 50 customers, and what was your growth strategy?

I think I had 50 active customers in just over a month or two, just that they were all free users and since the app doesn't need registration for the use of free features, I didn't track those users. Some users and friends I know have been using Pika actively since the inception
I think it took about 4 to 5 months to acquire first 50 paid users. The strategy that worked for me is to talk to as many users, potential users as possible and understanding their expectations with the product. It takes time to do it right, but once done right in no time you'll have tons of things in your roadmap to work just by talking to users. These are the things that needs your most attention. Work on those things, share it with users and repeat, this is what I've been doing so far

Which technology stack are you using and what challenges and limitations does it pose?

I am using Next.js, Supabase, TailwindCSS, RadixUI, Stripe
I didn't face any major challenge yet in terms of the tech stack, they're all easy to setup and use. The most tricky thing was setting up Stripe web-hooks because I was doing it for the first time and there are tons of events to deal with 😅

What are some of the most essential tools that you use for your business?

Pirsch.io for analytics has been very useful to track users and events, it helped me shape up the product a lot.
Crisp.chat is another tool that has helped me talk to my users and get feedback from them

What have been some of the biggest insights you've gained since starting your entrepreneurial journey?

  • Launch as soon as possible(but not sub-standard product/feature/design etc.). It's easy to keep working on a product or some feature to the perfection, but it's more important to get it out as soon as you can. You can always improve iteratively
  • Talk to your users as much as possible. Building intuitively works only when you have really good understanding of your users. So until then it's important to know your users and understand what they want you to be working on
  • Explore different ways and ideas with your product, for marketing, monetising and anything concrete that comes to your mind
  • Optimise for SEO from the start. I personally feel SEO is good way to get genuine users, the traffic from search engines is organic and they come to you because they're looking for you
I don't usually read self-help books, hate most podcasts
Some newsletters I really like:
Dense Discovery → https://www.densediscovery.com
Stefan Judis's newsletter → https://www.stefanjudis.com/newsletter/
Performance newsletter → https://perf.email/

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