Can't find an idea? Copy a profitable startup! Grab this list of ideas

I frequently talk to startup folks who share their pains and fears. The most asked question is “how did you find the idea?”.

Usually, I do not give direct answers. I do not believe in a declarative step-by-step guiding. I want people to find their answers by themselves. So I just ask questions and listen to what and how they say.

But this time I think I found a universal answer that can help everybody.

So the question: “I do not have any passions, pains but I want to make a profitable startup. What should I do?”.

The answer: copy! Just copy an existing business model with proven market demand. If you add some specific features, if you niche it down, if you are more successful in your local market - you will be profitable.

I suppose you started to sort through all possible ideas. Just relax and allow this thread to do the job :surfing_man:

So here are some project ideas which meet these criteria:

  • It has proven market demand.
  • It solves a real problem that people are ready to pay for.
  • It can be created in a small team or even alone.
  • It can be scaled.
  • Not too hard to compete (e.g. you can create a new to-do list but you will need to boil an ocean to outcompete 10,000 other often free todos).

Pick one of these:

Uptime monitoring

Your competitors: Hyperping (~$3,000 MRR), Pingr.

Landing page builder

Your competitors: Unicorn Platform (~$2,900 MRR), WordPress, Wix.

Form handler

Your competitors: FormKeep, GetForm.

Blog platform

Your competitors: Ghost.org, Teletype.

Logo generator

Your competitors: Brandcrowd, Logopony.

Presentation (slides) builder

Your competitors: Beautiful, Haikudeck.

Public changelog+roadmap

Your competitors: ?

Simple helpdesk with tickets

Your competitors: ?

Simple Zapier

Your competitors: ?

Simple Stripe checkout

Your competitors: ?

Simple product analytics

Your competitors: Fathom.

Form builder

Your competitors: Typeform, PaperForm.

Invoice generator

Your competitors: ?

Simple web scrapper

Your competitors: Scraperapi (~$239K MRR).

Feel free to pick up any idea or add yours in the reply to this topic!
You can also follow this topic to get notifications on the new ideas.

P.S. Much more competitors can be found on this open-sourced list: https://github.com/alexanderisora/startuptoolbox

2 Likes

Hi Alex. This is a nice method to find an idea. Copying an existing project which will for sure give your profit sounds wise and way less risky.

But doesn’t it mean I will have to put much more efforts into promoting my project? :thinking:

P.S. Here is another idea to copy:

Instagram/Facebok stories generator

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What do you mean by “Simple Zapier” ? Isn’t the current Zapier fairly simple already? also there’s n8n.io

Do a CRM!

Every business - big and small - needs a CRM. There are many players on this market, but everybody wants to build a powerful CRM to sell it to huge business for huge money.

Build a simple lightweight CRM for small businesses. Niche it down as much as possible.

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Yet Zapier is simple, I believe it can be even simpler. If you need to catch data from forms, you need to set up a Zapier webhook. It is quite challenging.
Imagine such a niched product: “connect forms to Google Sheet”. It is a radically simplified version of Zapier. That is my initial idea :slight_smile: What do you think?

P.S.: Thanks for the referrence to n8n.io. The project looks gorgeous.

My addition: simple email newsletter SaaS.

Competitor: https://buttondown.email/
I found Buttondown on IndieHackers when I decided to try myself as a newsletter curator (kudos to @lesley.pizza for the inspiration!)

buttondown is awesome. i’m a big fan. hope you enjoy it! :D

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