2 years ago


LayerVault Cosmos

We’re pleased to announce a new endeavor we’re embarking on today — it’s called Cosmos. Software can be full of challenges and discoveries, and some of those are best shared with the world. Cosmos is where we’ve begun publishing our open-source projects.

We’re launching the site with 2…

Source: layervault
2 years ago


Allan and I are happy to announce the release of LayerVault 2 today. This release represents several months of work. We focused on our core product even better along with new great features.

What you’ll see at layervault.com now is something we’re proud of. We went through dozens of possible designs before landing on the one you’ll see now.

Let’s dig into what’s new.

(Any press requests can be directed to press@layervault.com. Full resolution logos can be found at layervault.com/about.)

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Source: layervault
2 years ago


We’ve been quiet for a little while.

On April 24, that changes. We’re finally ready to show you what we’ve been working on for the last few months. Please join us for the announcement at 11am PST.

We’re really proud of what we’ve created. We hope you like it.

Mark your calendars.

Source: layervault
2 years ago

LayerVault is lucky in that the majority of customers love the service, but cancellations happen. And when they do happen, your mind races — what went wrong? Where did we fuck up?

I haven’t been able to find a straightforward, bulleted checklist that a SAAS business can use to deal with and prevent cancellations, so here’s ours. We’ve defined the three areas responsible for cancellations as follows: positioning, on-boarding, and executing on promises.


Positioning happens before the purchase takes place. Promises you’ve made and expectations you’ve set will be tested once your customer converts.  This is our pre-conversion positioning list:

  1. Video demos or marketing videos
  2. Exposed help pages and tutorials
  3. Product tours and screenshots
  4. Blog posts demoing features
  5. Straightforward language refraining from exaggeration.


On-boarding post-signup is critical. Don’t blow it. The battle has two fronts – educating your users and removing ambiguity from features. If you’ve added product tours, video demos, and tutorials, your user may be well on their way. The best on-boarding happens before the customer converts. Either way, here’s what’s in our on-boarding list:

  1. Make sure placeholders, empty states, and default states look great. Meaning, make things look great when they’re empty or haven’t been used.
  2. Make sure it’s clear what the new user’s first step is.
  3. Checklists and rewards. A great way to on-board is to reward the customer for educating himself.
  4. Check-in with the user to see how his on-boarding is going. Automatically or manually.
  5. Getting started videos.

Let’s get real for a moment — In reality, the single biggest way to make on-boarding easy: Don’t build garbage. The start-up quote floating around is that if you’ve released something you’re not embarrassed about, you took too long. That’s great for companies who don’t have paying customers. For the rest of us, it’s not. Release garbage, you’re going to regret it. Just do less, better.


If you built a product that doesn’t live up to the promises you made, either fix the product, fix the positioning, or both. The recommended steps are:

  1. Under-promise.
  2. Over-deliver.

This is clearly not an exhaustive list, but it’s a start. There’s nothing worse than a cancellation, even if it’s one in a thousand. You messed up. It’s your job to figure out how to better manage expectations and deliver on them.

We’re lucky, though. LayerVault is fairly easy to improve because we really only do one thing: Simple version control for designers. Had we bitten off more than we could chew, I imagine things would have been a lot different.

2 years ago

Hey, Back Button — Watcha thinking about?

Hi, I'm @Allan. I founded a company called LayerVault.