Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Download completion rates...

We use FileKicker for our downloads, with many different items so we can track different download locations and links on our sites. It lets us get some really good download statistics. I was comparing numbers...our average download completion for several programs is between 61% and 65%. And that's with our main tool being a download manager, which presumably people are using to download many of our files!

GetRight is a bit different...we have used our own tool GetRightToGo for all new user downloads for GetRight. We've been doing that for well over a year.

For GetRight, people first download the 300K small EXE build by GetRightToGo, which then when run it downloads the full 4 MB GetRight installer. (That 4MB is on the small end of when you'd ever want to use something like GetRightToGo--it makes even better sense with huge 100+ MB files; but we want to keep using and showing off our tools!)

I've always seen that both the tiny 300K file, as well as the installer it downloads got far higher completion rates than our regular links--the 300K gets over 91%, likely because it's so small and fast to download. And the EXE downloaded by it gets 85%. But there was always a bit of a drop between the two, people who downloaded the 300K file, but didn't run it (or possibly inflated by people who downloaded the 300K file twice.)

Comparing the worst case: the total number of download starts (completed + abandoned) for ToGo to the total number of completed downloads of the final installer EXE, it's still 68%. Not a huge amount higher than our regular downloads---but it is higher!

It is likely that for a bigger file, the difference would be even larger. Like some of the 1+GB games that have used GetRightToGo--many people would simply be unable to download the files without some assistance!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Web Design...

We did a pretty new and unique web design for, and then later adapted it to

Borrowing from the Windows' Start button, we put all the navigation into a button that showed series of sub-menus. We think it's great. It works especially well for our FindFiles software download site, since it nicely hides and organizes the dozens of categories. It all boils down to a simple, nice button that says "Find Files".

One of the main comments we got was to be careful doing something new and unique...

I think we were right, and a step ahead of the times.'s new web design does exactly the same thing! The main difference is mouse-over vs clicks. I think our onclick is better, it's easy to miss a submenu and have the whole thing disappear on Amazon. But now that Amazon is doing it too--I'd bet you'll start to see this sort of site navigation appearing everywhere!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Incremental Sales...

We'd heard for several years at the Shareware conferences about doing bundling and things to try and sell more. But we never had the products to do it.

After the conference in 2006, I just decided to make some so we could do it! I made a couple little tools (actually extracted parts from a bigger program). Some things that were very obvious and easy to understand. Especially the "Where'd My Space Go?" is easy to understand with the name, a little text, and a picture. I eventually added a friend's screen-saver as another choice. I wanted several very different things--something for everybody.

We did simple checkboxes on the buy page to add them to the orders. And really cheap prices. Make them like the goodies at the checkout in a grocery store--a real impulse thing to add the $5.99 extra tools.

It has worked well. Most days about 10% of the orders add one of the items.

You can see how we've done it at or The GetRight one shows how we've done several buy options as well (more on those in a later post!) We do the form for selecting ourselves, none of the registration services did this the way I wanted. There's a little javascript to direct people to the right spots depending on their choices.

We've also done the tools as standalone programs--with really no promotion. But they've gotten a few sales that way too. The tools we did are available through RegNow's affiliate program, so if you want to try with ours before making your own, you can do that too.


This was a costume from a few years ago. I made the head out of chicken wire and paper mache on an old bike helmet.
I found somebody who could sew (she'd worked on the costumes for a play my brother did) to help build the rest of the outfit.
My wife doesn't particularly like it. I suppose it's because we'd need to build some "Ripley in the fork-lift suit" so we could be a pair.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Free invention idea...

Why do keyboards only come in one size? My 10 year old nephew could be learning to touch type on a smaller keyboard that actually fit his hands better.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

A nice Windows trick...

This is one I do on my PCs to make it easy to view any file in Notepad.

Find the registry item:

Add a new sub-item for that:

For the (default) value in the command key, you just want it to be:
notepad.exe %1

Now, every item shown in the Windows Explorer will nave "Notepad" in the right-click menu.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007


A friend an I are creating a new fitness website. I'm the programmer, he's the Personal Trainer with the Big Idea (and the sales skills to sell it!)

Among a ton of other cool things I've gotten it to do already, if you have a blog or website like this, you can embed your daily food information for anybody to see! What better way to get feedback and help from your friends and family--they can see how well you're doing sticking to your food goals.

First Post

So, I'm only a couple years late to starting a blog...Today is the day!