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paulbird

You can't even give it away!

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My problem is this. I'm trying to give away some quality free software but this is proving harder than I first thought. It seems to me that people would rather pay £30 in a shop for a named brand than spend 2 minutes downloading something free off the internet. This is what I've tried to do so far: 1) Send e-mails to websites to ask them to put a link to my website. (About five sites have agreed so far.) 2) Apply to computer magazines to see if they want to put it on their cover disk. 3) Post messages in Google groups It has been 3 weeks since I started and I still only get about 60 hits on my website a day (My target is 1000 a day - is this unreasonable?) and 4 e-mails from people who have used the software. I thought that I would get exponential growth as each person told two other people so I'm a bit disapointed. (On previous websites I tried added rude words to the titles to try to increase hits but I don't want to do that this time. Maybe this is why the GIMP is so popular?) I appreciate it has only been 3 weeks but I'm impatient and I just don't know what to do! Any ideas? (This is what I'm talking about.) [Edited by - paulbird on August 21, 2004 10:49:09 AM]

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Be patient. It won't happen overnight.

I created some free software for Windows, people haven been gradually picking it up, and it's in moderate use.

But bear in mind there are a lot of other programs which probably do the same thing.

The best things are personal recommendations on board / newsgroups that count, or having it featured on relevant news web sites (in my experience).

Mark

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I think 1000 a day is a bit much, even 250 will be much IMO, 60 is a good score already.

Posting at gamedev, such as this one, will help. Why not make the link your signature?

BTW, that math program seems handy, when will it be released?

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Hmmm, yes I suppose I am wanting too much too soon I'll just have to be patient!

The math program, which I think is more useful but would appeal to less people, (although that Wolfram fellow seemed to do alright with his didn't he?!) might be out soon. But I'm having a few philosophical difficulties with it at the mo.

1) Mathematics (as far as we know) is not a finite subject so I'll have to decide how much of it needs to be workable within the program.

2) The main problem though is timing. A simple example is expanding the following:

(a+3b+4c+d+e+f+g+2h+i+j)*(2a+3b+c+d+e+f+4g+h+i+7j)

When this is expanded this creates 10x10=100 terms. Which it can do in a milli-second. But then it has to group terms together for example: 3bc + 12bc --> 15bc which requires matching each of 100 terms with the 100 other terms which gives approximately 100x100=10000 checks, which is where it starts to get a bit slow. I'm not sure if there is any good solution to this other than to display a message: "This may take some time..."

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Take a look at the Web Development magazines on sale in the UK (assuming you're in the UK, if not your country will have them too); they often run features about how to promote your site for free and increase hit traffic.

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I prefer downloading from a "known" site that already have virus scanned the files I'm downloading. Not that I mistrust you in any way, but if I could download your applications from for instance http://www.download.com/ that would be more convincing.

I care if it's a good program to use, if I have to pay a little or if it's open source or not doesn't really matter.

If your name is well known on for instance gamedev.net, codeproject.com or usenet that of course helps. Mayve you could start posting answers to tricky questions on such sites? Then refer to such posts from your own website.

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You might want to think of a way to make it obvious that it is free without the big "free software" label. If I had come to your site from a search engine, or from a link on a site I don't 100% trust I would have closed it immediatly assuming it was just another site trying to persuade me to install spyware.

Perhaps I am alone in this, but considering the amount of spyware sites that use "Free software!" are almost as common as ones offering "Free screensavers!" I expect it could be a few more than me who would be put off from investigating further.

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Two Things:

1. Make the link to what you're giving away bigger. I didn't even see it. Put in your signature!!!!!

(2) (The subject sounded like a slutty virgin) :)

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Yes, download.com would be good except that it seems you have to pay MONEY for them to list your program which I don't think is right if you are giving away freeware somehow.
Thats life I suppose.

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Quote:

It seems to me that people would rather pay £30 in a shop for a named brand than spend 2 minutes downloading something free off the internet.


How do they know it doesn't have spyware or a trojan? People are paranoid (and stubborn!), so they stick with what they trust...it's that simple.

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