There are countless tutorials online showing step by step how to develop websites and mobile applications. On top of that, there are many programmers with proven abilities to build such products. They do it all day every day and make the owners of their companies a lot of money. Then how come only some of them can build and launch such a product on their own?

This was the question I was asking myself as an employee. I saw a product I’ve been working on going from nothing to a large scale web application serving many well paying clients. Since I knew how every part of this application works and I contributed in someway to all of them, I couldn’t help wondering if it’s something I would have been able to accomplish myself on a smaller scale and started working on side projects as a result.

First, you must figure out what to build and plan ahead how to sell it. To know what to build you must identify a need and an audience that has that need. Building a product is meaningless unless it gives someone value and they are willing to pay for it.

The other tricky thing is that you’ll have to do everything by yourself at first. Building a product from scratch will require you to be familiar with all aspects of it’s development. Front end, back end, system admin and everything in between.

But the most important thing is to keep working until you have something usable and then ship it. This is by far the hardest yet the most important thing to do. To keep pushing the first version little by little until it’s ready and then shipping it even though it’s not yet perfect. Work ethic and discipline are probably more important that anything else.