A Minimum Viable Product or MVP is a basic version of a new product that is sufficient to launch in the market and allows validation of customers. Through MVP, the startups can understand the demand for the product in the market and tweak it to raise its popularity.
Principally, an MVP serves three purposes:
- Solves the customers’ problems with sufficient features
- Fills the market gap through continuous evolvement
- Collects customers feedback and validate the idea
Why Developing MVPs Crucial for Startups?
MVP serves an ideal way to ascertain the commercial aspects of the product and avoid business blunders. The response collected can help in improving the product by meeting the customer’s requirements. By doing so, startups can save time and money while continuing to innovate. Here is a list of reasons why startups must go with MVP.
Designing a rich product with a more accessible UI can take years and a lot of resources. Instead, launching a product with sufficient features in the market is more profitable in the long-run. In his book ‘The Lean Startup,’ Eric Ries described that the MVP approach focuses on finding a narrower functional design point that allows a company to ‘scope down’
the features, thus speeding up the design process, which helps to bring the product to market much faster.
With a fast market release, you can swiftly take the initial stake in the market and get customers on board who can later bring success to the product. The process also ensures that you leave your competitors behind.
Evolution Based on Feedback
By entering the market first, you can get rid of the avoidable mistakes that can potentially harm the business. It is because you can understand the customer requirement from day one. Their feedback can bring a successful transformation to your product idea and helps you meet the existing demand in the market.
According to the ‘State of the Connected Customer report by Salesforce – 76% of the consumer expect businesses to understand their needs and expectations. Businesses who take customer feedback seriously always thrive, and it is best to take it during the initial stage itself.
This step creates a room for the product to evolve and give it all the new features to meet the present and future customer demand. Startups can explore the latest technology that can help them outrank competitors while gathering customer feedback. For instance, Apple first released the iPod, a portable music player, and later developed iPhones, iPad, MacBook, and so on – all based on customer demand for premium gadgets.
Getting Seed Funding
By having an MVP with you, you can assess if the product will resonate with the audience for its value and usability. When you have this information, you can connect with your investor with real-time data. Persuading an investor for your idea is not easy; however, an MVP can help the investor analyze the ROI based on facts and not mere words.
Facebook’s MVP was a website that showed pictures of students side-by-side and asked users to choose the ones they liked. In 2004, when Facebook was just six months old, by showcasing its 150,000 registered users, the company was able to secure its first $500,000 investment and an additional $12.2 million in April 2005. The MVP toolkit can also support you in putting forth the business goals and plans and get the investors onboard faster.
Building a fully functional, perfect product can be a financial constraint for many startups. By creating an MVP, you can get a minimum seed funding that can cover the development cost and then make a full-fledged product. When your MVP is built on an Agile framework, you can change whatever is required to optimize costs and create a profitable product.
Manage Project Risks
Every idea that is born comes with its own set of risks. Market fluctuation, consumer demand, and other factors can affect the performance of the product. An MVP reduces the risk since it helps you to understand what functionality needs to be removed or added.
Best Practices for Developing an MVP: Learning from Real-life Examples
An MVP must be developed with core characteristics that should follow some best practices as followed by the likes of Amazon, Instagram, Air BnB, Dropbox, Spotify, and a few more. These companies first developed a viable product to understand the demand of the customer and also tested their product so that potential business blunders and liquidation problems can be avoided.
Amazon began first as an online bookstore by validating 20 products that can be sold online and finally decided amazon bookstore to be the first online platform. Continually innovating over two decades, Amazon today is amongst the top e-commerce brands in the world, selling gadgets and whatnot.
Groupon started as a basic WordPress website where the customers signed up with them. The Groupon would then send back a list of discount vouchers on their respective emails. Their WordPress website was their MVP, which slowly evolved into a full-fledged website through the revenue they generated from the initial customers.
Uber also smartly started with an MVP app named UberCab, available only on iOS. This app helped the founders understand the customers and scale swiftly to become one of the promising companies of Silicon Valley.
No matter how amazing your idea can sound, it may not get popular among the customers. However, by knowing the consumer demand and considering the customer’s feedback, MVP can be an asset to evolve your business idea. An MVP can take up to 3-4 months to develop – and to collect customer data; it would take another quarter. It is always recommended to find ways to reduce this period and reach the market faster.
Getting a Hyper Intuitive, Hyper Scalable MVP Developed at Hyper Speed
Utilizing Technology Extensions, Unthinkable can create robust MVPs for your ideas, which can be scaled easily in the future, provide better customer experience, and help capture market share as well as mind share. With the experience of developing more than 80 digital applications across different industries, Unthinkable enables a faster release in the market and locks out the competitors.
Have no second thoughts about developing an MVP and getting a faster release in the market. This can help you build a customer base, grow by word of mouth referrals, and, most importantly, help your investors analyze the returns on investment.
We, at Unthinkable, can help you sail throughout the journey of MVP smoothly. We have a team of experts who can help cut the development time to half without compromising the outcome of an MVP. We empower the disruptors and innovators with sophisticated MVPs by providing custom solutions through our unparalleled expertise.