Communicating with your user base

Just wanted to write a quick post about this. I recently read an article about a large company hiring a programmer off hackernews, and how programmers want to be engaged more with what they're producing.

While I work a full time job at Mosaic and I enjoy it, I also have had a Shopify application in a beta state for the past month or two. More recently, I've been in touch with a couple shopify users that are interested in my app.

They have been emailing questions, asking me about the application, can it do this, can it do that? Somethings so far I've looked at implementing, as it's something that's a good idea, not overly challenging, and something I just did not realize. The fact that I can send them an email to keep them up date, and communicate with them directly is such a great feeling. I know exactly what the writeer of that blog post was talking about.

For a shameless plug, here's my shopify app page: http://apps.shopify.com/clearcharity

Some learnings i've had so far

  • With feature requests, definitely evaluate what they're asking and see if it's doable, and if it's a feature many would want.
  • If you are not going to move forward with the feature, be honest and tell them why.
  • Keep them up to date when you post changes or potential implementations. This is likely an obvious point, but it keeps them engaged.