If you’re anything like me you’ve got a bunch of half finished creations laying around. Designs that never got coded, apps that became obsolete or were just never finished, etc. These half finished ideas took time to make and could be useful to others, but there’s just too much overhead to doing anything with them. So what happens? They just sit on our hard drives – until now! Gumroad is a service that makes it easy to sell these projects. Simply upload the files and share the link with your existing communities like Twitter or Dribbble. There’s no store to manage, just links.
Gumroad was created by Sahil Lavingia who took the time to talk to The Industry about this exciting new service.
What is Gumroad?
Gumroad is a tool that makes selling as easy as sharing a link. We fundamentally believe selling something shouldn’t be any harder than sharing an image with your friends, for example.
Where does the name ‘Gumroad’ come from, why was this name chosen for the service?
Gum – implies creativity through color. Road – connects two things. Gumroad is all about helping people earn money from the stuff they create, and creating a connection between the creator and the consumer of each good. And the experience of using Gumroad should be like strolling through Candyland.
How long has the site been live?
It’s been around since May, but I went full-time on it in November.
Are there any big ticket items on the site yet?
Not yet, though people have used Gumroad to sell things like iPods.
How did the iPod sales work, as this service is focused on digital goods?
Because Gumroad lets you require an email address, you can potentially sell whatever you want (you can even make the final link a mailto :). People are creative when you give them the flexibility to do cool things. (Though it may be worth mentioning that the fulfillment is on the seller.)
Stats: number of users, number of items for sale, amount paid out?
They’re all in the thousands, so I’m happy. But we’re not really focused on growth yet; I really want to nail down the product first.
How many people are working on Gumroad, is it a business or a side project?
It’s a business now. It’s just me full-time for now, but hopefully for not much longer!
What inspired you to create this service?
I designed an icon. I wanted to see if any of my followers (on Twitter) would buy it. I realized doing that was significantly difficult. So I built an easier solution that weekend.
How did the design of the site come about?
I designed the site as I implemented all of the functionality. I made it good enough to use, but not much better — until I got to focus on it full-time.
What sort of future plans do you have in store for Gumroad?
I think there are many opportunities in making selling easier for creative people. By solving this core problem, I think there will be many more interesting opportunity.
I tried out Gumroad and it worked as advertised, it was a stream lined simple process of uploading a psd and providing a preview image and description. I look forward to selling more psds and code projects through Gumroad. I’m already building a list in my head of the unpublished projects on my computer :)
Thanks to Sahil Lavingia for taking the time to talk to us, and be sure to check out some of his other wonderful creations.