This goes against my gut instinct


When I first announced I was working on LearnGit.io back in May, I was sure launching by the end of 2023 was an achievable goal. Seven months later, the only thing stopping me from achieving that goal is (predictably!) bureaucracy.

Bureaucracy

If you've been following my weekly updates on Instagram, YouTube or X (more about that below), you know I've formed a business, The Modern Coder Group LLC, to own and operate LearnGit.io. I am the sole proprietor, and forming a limited-liability company like this is good practice to compartmentalize accounting, taxes, payments, etc. All was smooth sailing until it came to opening a bank account for this business - a necessary step for payment process. Due to certain paperwork requirements, I'm delayed in completing this step and won't be able to integrate payments by the end of 2023.

The good news is that LearnGit.io will be code-complete by the end of 2023; however, I won't be able to onboard any customers for another few weeks. I'm aiming for mid-late January 2024 as a launch date, so stay tuned for exact details once all the paperwork is buttoned up.

Decisions, decisions

Speaking of launching, LearnGit.io will launch exclusively to this newsletter! The idea is to give first access to the folks who have shown the most interest and support. That's you - thank you for reading these! Not only will early access give me a chance to share what I've been working on, but it starts a two-way dialogue on how LearnGit.io can get better. Which brings us to a dilemma:

A business is not a business without income, but my first instinct was to not charge anything. During early access, there will be bugs and inaccuracies. The UI will lack polish. All sorts of growing pains will be present. How could I possibly charge for something like that?

Though this sounds like a reasonable conclusion, almost everything I've read on the subject of early-stage businesses strongly recommends charging something at the beginning. After deliberation and research, I've come to look at it is this: there are plenty of high-quality, free options for learning Git on the internet (including my own YouTube channel); however, LearnGit.io aims to provide substantial value beyond those free options to justify charging a premium. In addition to improving the quality of LearnGit's content offering, it's equally important for early access to demonstrate whether LearnGit.io actually provides value consistent with it's cost. The first step in understanding this is to charge for access.

If you don't feel LearnGit.io provides enough value to justify the price tag, that's OK. In fact, that is the goal of charging for early access. It's a valuable point of feedback to understand how LearnGit.io is failing to provide value, and how I could correct these shortcomings. A focus of mine is to be as transparent as possible about LearnGit.io. My hope is that this transparency will build trust, and improve the product for others.

Pricing Considerations

In my head, a $25 one-time cost for lifetime membership to LearnGit.io feels right for early access. To give you a sense of where pricing is headed in the future: Udemy is the most popular marketplace of online courses for developers. The average price of the top 10 most popular Git courses on Udemy is $88, and if you account for only the top 5, that average rises to $103. Other offerings that are more feature-rich, such as Josh Comeau's courses on CSS and React, typically land in the couple-hundred-dollar range. I expect that the price of LearnGit.io will rise to be competitive with these prices over time.

For early access, $25 feels like a good number. It gives you, the early adopter, a sizable discount for taking the risk with me, while still being substantial enough to demonstrate value in the product. I know you haven't had a chance to experience the product yet, but if you have any thoughts on pricing, feel free to respond to this email and start a conversation. I'm curious for your thoughts.


Weekly Updates

In November, I launched weekly vlog-style videos chronicling progress on my business. These were meant to supplement the monthly newsletters, and give me a chance to more regularly connect with you; however, I made a big mistake by not promoting these vlogs in my newsletter sooner. If you don't follow me on Instagram, X or YouTube Shorts, you wouldn't have even known I started! Consider this your heads-up to head over to one of those platforms and drop me a follow if that sounds interesting to you. In the meantime, here's a compilation of all my November updates to get you caught up. Enjoy!

Early Access Sneak Peek

In addition to those weekly updates, let's take a walkthrough of LearnGit.io, and get a sneak peek at what to expect for early access.

There is a lot more to come in future newsletters. Thanks again for joining. Cheers,

Jack

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The Modern Coder

My name is Jack Lot Raghav, I'm a tech industry professional (ex Amazon) & growing YouTuber (28k @themoderncoder) building an online business (LearnGit.io). In this newsletter, I'll be sharing monthly technical & business insights as I strive for self-employment.

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