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You can easily do without lemonade, but not without water.  You can’t create your favorite drink without it, you can’t quench your thirst. Now you’re asking, what do startups and apps have to do with it?  MVP development is the same water from which you will create an iconic product like Coca-Cola in the future.

A minimally viable product is a simplified version of your idea with a set of basic features. It helps you assess the payback, profitability, and marketability of the project.

Suppose you have a cool idea, you are confident in its success, you have a budget to implement it. You decided to consult with a company that provides MVP development services for startups The experts advised you to create an MVP first. During testing, it turned out that the product is not as much in demand on the market as you expected it to be. Getting feedback will help you form new needs for the market and make a normal product by completely changing the concept. 

When you use this method, you save:

  • Time. After all, MVP development takes less time than creating a full-scale product.
  • Money. The savings will be in excess of tens of thousands of dollars.

10 startups’ mistakes in MVP development

Mistakes are an experience; you can’t grow and become successful without them. But what if they can be minimized, reduced? And for that it is enough to gather more information, consult with specialists, and use other people’s experience in the studied field. This is especially valuable for startups, in order to present a working version of the product and get investment as quickly as possible.

Here’s exactly what you shouldn’t do in MVP development:

  1. Over-saturated functionality. You should only put in a few features or even one main feature. Because the first and foremost goal is testing.
  2. MVP does not solve the user’s problem. Let’s remember about water. You wanted to create delicious lemonade for children, but you only added lemon. And it’s not sweet enough for them, and it’s not in demand.
  3. The product solves a minor problem.
  4. Misidentifying your target audience. You created a tasty lemonade with added sugar for girls, but didn’t consider that they count every calorie. Perhaps your ideal audience would be teenagers, then the packaging design and advertising should have focused on them.
  5. You made a product, but not for the client, but for yourself. Everything is clear here, you did not take into account in your market analysis what users need, you did not identify their problems and pains.
  6. There is no promotion plan and strategy. There is a product, but no one knows about it. There is no website, no social media, no advertising, and you have not involved the leaders of opinion. With the high level of competition and over saturation of information, it is difficult to attract potential users without a competent marketing strategy.
  7. No clear budget. If you do not have a clearly structured plan with specific amounts at each stage of MVP development, then you may face a situation of lack of funds. In this case, you risk ruining all the work on the project because of one imperfect step.
  8. There is no work on feedback. The main purpose of launching an MVP is to collect feedback. They should not be ignored, it is the most valuable information that will help to make your product popular and user-friendly and your company will have a successful project.
  9. The desire to bring it to perfection, and then release it into the public domain. The modern world is changing literally every second. The more time you spend on MVP development, the more likely someone else will steal your idea and launch it on the market. And you will lose money and time.
  10. And the main mistake is an unprofessional development team. Help your startup and turn to proven professionals.

Action plan

Now that you know what to avoid, it’s worth considering where to start MVP development.

Define the product you want to create. Formulate the goals you want it to achieve. Describe all the benefits to the user. For example, you are launching an app for comparing credit conditions in banks. So the user needs to search and analyze by various parameters, as well as a wide range of organizations.

Do a comprehensive analysis of the future project. Write down all the strengths and weaknesses. You have to do serious analytical work to be ready for any difficulties.

Determine your target audience and do a competitor analysis. Who exactly will be interested in getting a loan, what tasks they want to solve, what life situation they are in, how old they are. Take a look at other similar developments, do a detailed analysis in order to set yourself apart from the competition and add an advantage to your product. It can be a simple functionality or a sleeker design.

Create a user journey map. There’s a lot of hard work behind an intuitive and understandable interface. It’s like a walk in the park. The path can be wide, comfortable, laid out with beautiful tiles and bright arrows and pointers. So you can get straight to the pond with the ducks. Otherwise, it may be a poorly maintained garden with fallen trees and holes in the paths. And you will not get to the pond, because you get lost. Of course, such a park will want to escape.

Determine the functionality. We will consider this point in detail further.

Testing and analysis of feedback. You collect feedback, comments and messages from the first buyers. Based on the information obtained, you evaluate the entire project and make the necessary changes for the final product.

Balance in MVP development

Why is this separate section? The success of the whole project depends on how well you choose your MVP functionality. You need to get user reaction to the main idea. If they won’t be able to test it, evaluate it, because they are stuck at the stage of endless selection of conditions, coordination of details, then you won’t know the main answer of MVP development. Whether the project is worth pursuing further. You can’t spread your efforts over multiple tasks at once.

Let’s take a fitness app as an example; its main purpose is to help people keep fit without a gym. The main function is to give users access to exercise. In addition, there can be a calorie counter, the ability to communicate within the app, control the amount of water drunk, recipes for healthy meals with calculation of the calories in fat.

To determine a set of MVP development features, make a list where you place them according to priority, from more important to less. Leave only the top rating. There are actually many ways to define, you can choose anyone. Remember, the main function is the one that solves the customer’s problem. That is, at the very beginning when developing the idea, you already knew exactly what should be in the beta testing.

From an MVP to a full-fledged product

Suppose you’ve created an MVP and started testing. What to do next? Let’s remember how Henry Ford II and his legendary team created GT40. He aimed to beat Ferrari in the race “the 24 Hours of Le Mans”.  To begin with, they created a prototype and, after much testing and modification, released it on the track. So your project has to be tested by the users.

If you answer “yes” to the following points, then MVP development can move into the phase of creating a full-fledged product:

  • The audience is interested in your product, solves the challenges, and fulfills the meanings embedded in it.
  • You better understand the audience you created the product for and know how to improve it.
  • You’ve gathered feedback and done analysis. Furthermore, you corrected mistakes, made adjustments and understood what you should pay attention to, how to make the product more user-friendly.
  • You only made a profit at the mvp development stage. This is a reliable indicator of the future success and monetization of your product.

Let’s summarize. MVP is a chance for a startup not only to test the viability of a business idea, but also to show investors that you are responsible with money and know how to save time. You are ready to change plans, restructure the concept, and do your best to succeed. 

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