Successfully Rebranding My Side Project – Before and After

Shane Labs April 1, 2014 6

Back in December I had one of my side projects torn apart at the first entrepreneurial event I went to. I received lots of great feedback about AmpedSense, and one of those was making the site look more professional. Today I’ll show you the transformation it went through, utilizing a little cash and patience, and what ultimately lead to my first sale at a premium price!

I’m a great developer, but a horrendous designer

I’m a great developer, but a horrendous designer. The artwork that my parents used to hang on the fridge were my stick figures, no joke. My sister took all the artsy genes in the family, leaving my bro and I with nothing.

So you can imagine how amazing (not!) most of my sites looks (check out SongKeyFinder for a prime example). For AmpedSense I had done everything myself. Created the logo myself, set up a theme myself, and came up with all the content myself. Here’s how it looked prior to this month:

Old AmpedSense Home Page

AmpedSense Home Page, prior to redesign

Pretty horrid, huh? That logo makes me cringe! It does a decent job of explaining what the product does, but it looks like it was made by a 5th grader in a WSYWIG editor.

Finding a designer

I was originally planning on finding a designer through elance – but was dreading it since you never know what you’re going to get. I hit up my friends, and got a referral to someone they recommended, but after not hearing from this person for a full 2 weeks, decided I needed someone more responsive.

Ya know how they say you’ll find love when you quit looking for it? That’s how I found my designer. I had made a random comment on reddit about my site needing a redesign, and I got a private message from a random named Cory:

Meeting Cory

Cory reached out to me via Reddit

I checked out his stuff, and it looked legit. Plus I could tell that he was still learning a few things, which means he would have reasonable rates. I went back and forth with him through email, decided on the scope (new logo + 5 pages) at a cost of $500 (12 hours at $40/hr), and went forward.

What I loved about Cory was he had excellent communication skills. Emailed me several times a week to let me know of progress, and sent screenshots of how things were coming along so I could provide feedback. He also had a great process of duplicating my site onto his own server, so that he could develop without fear of taking down the live site.

AmpedSense Logo Sketch

Some preliminary logo sketches I received from my designer

The new design

Okay okay, enough chat – here’s the finished product:

AmpedSense After

The new AmpedSense design – killer!

Or check it out live at

I still plan on making a few tweaks, and I know that sites are a living being and will always be changing, but I’m pretty stoked on it for now.

Conclusion: SUCCESS

This was an incredibly successful experience. Working with new designers can be a nightmare and Cory made it pleasant. I now have a go-to designer I can utilize in the future, and that’s priceless.

Additionally, my new price point was proven. I had risen the price from $29 to $59/79 based on feedback, and within a few days of relaunch, I had my first sale at this increased price. This new ‘first’ sale proves it can be worth $79, which is awesome!

I’d love to hear feedback from you all – what do you like/hate about it? Anything you would change?

PS – I just updated my social channels. Don’t forget to follow me on: TwitterFacebookGoogle+RSS


  1. Nehal Patel April 2, 2014 at 8:06 pm - Reply

    I need a Cory.

    • Cory April 15, 2014 at 6:55 pm - Reply

      Hey Nehal, I’m always available if you want to chat!

  2. Code Creative April 2, 2014 at 8:06 pm - Reply

    Looks great, congrats on this 🙂

    • Shane Labs April 2, 2014 at 8:08 pm - Reply

      Thank you!!

  3. CoolGuy April 2, 2014 at 8:07 pm - Reply

    “decided I needed someone more responsive.” Heh.
    The new design looks great. I too much prefer development to design.

    • Shane Labs April 2, 2014 at 8:07 pm - Reply

      Haha 🙂

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