We're bootstrapping our latest business idea. Everything I've done has been boostrapped. This will be a complete stop and change direction (so could be a total distraction for a month while we research, meet potential customers etc).
It's an idea we had 12 years ago and couldn't make happen as to be blunt internet tech wasn't up to it, although we had a basic framework (Oh to have had Ajax!). We had done customer discovery and validated there was a group willing to pay. The same gap exists, albeit a little narrower, but for the most part unchanged. The market has grown significantly, but still operates in a broadly offline manner - even though there are web enabled services they are a swish front end on the offline workflow.
The idea is of the Basecamp model - tighter, smaller and simpler - to target a particular niche, but emphasising better workflow. Similar infrastructure and pricing model to them also, so it's cashflow positive.
I've read and reread Criteria for judging viability, and many other resources on the topic over the years. It still seems sound, and viable.
A chance meeting with a business owner last week identified that this type of solution is desired still.
I find it amazing to see that no one has found and occupied that space in the meantime. No one appears to have even tried. We've tried to understand why no one has, but can't!
I can't help but feel that if no one has taken the space in 12 years we're missing something fundamental - what more can I do to reassure myself or find the "gotcha"?
Edited to add:
Am I making too much of that feeling we're missing something? Would you find a complete absence of players in an apparently available and profitable niche off-putting? Or just get on with it?
(It's possibly also worth mentioning that it would need investment to get to the right level of service, which would be a first for us.)