What are good products that enable a software startup to interface with customers online?


I'm working on a software app that I will sell online. I'm going to go with the "release-early, iterate quickly" plan, so rapid customer feedback is all-important.

I'm looking for a web app for my site that can handle any or most of the following: forums, feature suggestions, bug reporting, voting on features, release notes, mailing list.

I'm just starting off so I don't need something enterprise level - just something to get the momentum going.

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asked Oct 16 '09 at 03:24
45 points
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7 Answers


http://uservoice.com/ is what you want. There is a free version that allows 100 voters and 1 forum. Once you need more then that you can upgrade accordingly. But this is great as a start.

answered Oct 16 '09 at 04:02
Cory Mathews
326 points


uservoice or getsatisfaction - i prefer the former

answered Oct 16 '09 at 03:39
744 points


I'm not sure there's one tool for 100% of the above. For example, there's UV and GS as suggested here but they're useless for release management.

Which is fine! Just know that you'll have to piece together a few things.

FYI since others have avoided "releases," I suggest a blog -- easy to post updates and easy for your customers to subscribe via RSS or email as well as search an archive.

Same with a mailing list -- consider having that just be "your blog with comments." If you want lots of discussion on the mailing list, use forums instead -- it does the same thing but Google will index it, etc..

answered Oct 16 '09 at 04:11
16,231 points


http://uservoice.com for the front end
http://batchblue.com to manage leads
http://outright.com to track their revenue to the bottom line

answered Oct 16 '09 at 04:58
Paul O'brien
521 points
  • Great point @raminf I missed ZenDesk which doesn't fit in any of those groups. You need a support queue and ZenDesk is fantastic – Paul O'brien 14 years ago


Google Analytics to see which pages are getting hit.

Kiss Metrics to be able to easily ask users what they want.

Uservoice.com is good for Q&A forums. It'll save you a bundle in support costs.

Use a wiki for registered users. It will provide them a way to capture knowledge which your product or documentation didn't make easy or obvious.

answered Jun 5 '11 at 00:41
Jay Godse
381 points


I'm in the same boat. Been looking at Uservoice for certain things and ZenDesk for others. Will probably end up using a combination of the two.

answered Oct 16 '09 at 05:41
401 points


connectnow.acrobat.com for screen sharing

answered Oct 16 '09 at 08:57
Yakov Fain
221 points

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