[quote=17983:@Richard Gorbutt]So, I’m getting closer to release etc. and been trawling the old forums and other stuff. I can handle all the registration and payments by myself or involve services such as eSellerate or Fastspring. I’m seeing more positiveness for Fastspring at the moment, but I’ll have to decide myself.
As I wander the web, I’m seeing that at least eSellerate appear to have resolved the Previous issues with WIndows and Mac builds, however do they also cover Linux? (I’m not expecting much here but I may get a few sales due to the fact that for my area, it’s a good % that run Linux)?
I also liked what I saw with LimeLM registration schemes, but not sure I like the monthly commitment, wonder if any others had any throughts. My current registration scheme uses the MBS registration scheme with a console app running on AWS which so far so good.
Just would like some real world feedback before I re-invent too much of the wheel?
It is difficult to know in advance how many sales you will have, but you may want to consider some aspects.
If it is your first foray in online sales, you may want to get your feet wet with the least possible overhead. Unless you sell applications that require a lot of support and you are ready to maintain a heavy database of users with license numbers, you may want to switch to no license numbers and a fire and forget scheme where you keep a record of the sale, the details of the customers, the date. It may suffice. If you feel license numbers are absolutely necessary, then look into partners that can manage issuing numbers and managing customer delivery. Your business is development, the less you distract in ancillary things the better.
If you envision selling on the Mac App Store, you got to remember that it is pure fire and forget : All Apple shares with you is money and sales figures. You will not know whom you sold to.
Building your own delivery system is necessary only if you are getting a reasonable amount of sales. Ready-made platform such as e-junkie.com are nice, because you can immediately sell software and do not need to worry about engineering or issuing keys and stuff, as well as storage space.
When I built my own delivery system back in 1998, almost nothing existed and Digital River just started. I did not trust them and it seems they have not improved. I went for a Merchant service with a web gateway, then they could not handle the level of chargebacks, so I went to Authorize.net who also canceled my account because of chargebacks, and tried a couple more until I went with Paypal, and have been with them since 2001 or so. I’m telling you the horror story of chargebacks because that is the risk with Merchant services. They do not take any risk, and selling software over the Internet has its share of bad customers. Paypal on the other hand has a rigorous process of arbitration, and does not freak about chargebacks.
In terms of engineering and support, I went from perl scripts back in 1998 to PHP around 2005, then added Xojo WE for software delivery and mail management last year.
If I was starting today, I would probably not bother building all that and go for a ready solution.
In terms of sales, I have Windows and Mac products. Up until 3 years ago, Windows was the largest share. Then it seems the preverse effects of the free mentality killed a lot of sales, and some products plummeted. Also, one my major products got no only cloned, but they also took the name of the product which definitely ruined its image For a small guy, going after these kinds of spandrels is kind of traumatic. You need to be aware that as soon as you get on the market, though, you will become the unfortunate target of such things. Cyber squatting and counterfeiting has become an art and defending against it is difficult. see https://forum.xojo.com/13853-protecting-ip/unread
Today most of my sales are Mac, especially since last year I started selling on the Mac App Store. I am still amazed by the number of sales. In comparison, the Windows Store has about 10 times less activity.
I looked into Linux but am frankly afraid that now generalized 64 bits may render selling 32 bits applications challenging, and much too demanding in terms of support.