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Make Money with Custom Software Development

written by: Lucinda Watrous•edited by: Ronda Bowen•updated: 7/1/2010

Web Developers often have programming skills that can be applied to more than websites. It is possible to use the skills with languages such as visual basic to make money providing custom software development.

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    computer For those with visual basic and other programming language skills, custom software development is a profitable niche. Many companies are looking for ways to increase sales, through new product creation or by offering free products to reel potential customers in for more. Custom software development could easily be one of the ways companies can reach their new customers or expand their business. By offering a free program to their customers, businesses are doing them a favor. Businesses also need their own proprietary programs for a variety of purposes. Small businesses with less capital are not going to go searching for large big name companies to do the job for them. Even if you don’t want to leverage your skills and offer freelance services to other companies, you can still make money from your skills provided you can find a niche area where software is needed.

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    Create Your "Company" Website

    Think of this as your portfolio. It should provide information about who you are as a business, the experience you have to back up the services you offer, as well as what services you are willing to offer. Pricing information is optional, as many companies price on a per project basis since each program is different. If you don’t want to market your services to others, your portfolio should consist of programs you have developed and serve as a hub to sell them.

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    Develop Software Titles

    Spend a decent amount of time researching various needs for programs within your skill set. Think along the lines of something you could offer for free or cheap, that many people could use. Some ideas would be: recipe databases, fitness trackers, digital file organizers, and personal finance programs. The ideas are nearly endless, limited only by skill and time.

    After you’ve decided on a title or two to develop, spend time building the program. Once the program is ready, get a few family members and friends to beta test the program for bugs. Once the beta test is complete, work out all the bugs and get the program ready for release.

    It is best to start with one stoftware title and then move on to others after gauging the response levels of the first software. Build an extensive library one or two programs at a time to watch your business soar.

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    Add the Program to Your Site

    Add the program to your site, offering the title for free, or offering a free trial. Setup payment gateways such as PayPal to accept your payments and automatically deliver the download to your customers.

    Be prepared to offer some sort of program support or provide information on your website that will answer users frequently asked questions. Ask users to provide reviews after they have used the free trial or in exchange for a discounted price on the program.

    Start selling the programs and promoting your site. Consider starting an affiliate program to get others promoting the programs for you.

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    Image Credit: Flickr