A minimum viable product (MVP) is a product developed with just enough features to attract early adopter customers and validate a product idea early during the development cycle. An MVP is used in numerous industries, including software development. Its objective is to ensure end users’ satisfaction and gain a competitive advantage, which is why it’s important to collect users’ feedback early on. So if you want to develop your own software and are still considering building an MVP first, let us explain why it is essential for your product.
Why is it Essential?
Clarifies Concept and Design
An MVP validates both the concept and design of the software. It gives the development team a clearer idea of what users expect from such a product, and hence what features and interface elements are required to meet the users’ expectations.
Ensures Features Function Properly
An MVP makes sure that the software works exactly how it is supposed to according to plan. This gives developers a chance to identify any defects in order to fix them during the development stage instead of after its launching.
Tests the demand for this software
Innovative software is supposed to solve a certain problem that users are probably facing. The role of an MVP is to check whether the features of the software are understandable and user-friendly. It is essential to know whether the software will indeed solve the user’s problem.
Clears Project Plan
Building an MVP helps the team truly conceptualize the software, decide on features, choose a technology stack, and other decisions that bring together a clear plan. This serves as a solid reference while building the actual product and promotes an efficient development process.
Benefits of MVP Software Development
Attracts stakeholders & investors
A Software MVP facilitates getting investors’ approval earlier by providing them with a tangible product. The main concern of investors is knowing they will get their money back. Therefore, presenting them with more than just an idea of a project increases your chances of getting their approval. Being able to try the product and see the feedback of customers who have tried it as well will make your project more reassuring to investors.
Get to test your idea faster
Any entrepreneur can get it wrong when it comes to choosing the features that potential customers are going to like in software. But when that happens, the development team will have to spend more time and effort to fix or change those features. Meanwhile, an MVP software development allows you to visualize your product’s future and decide only on features that will get good customer feedback.
MVPs contain only the most basic features that are essential for the success of the product. The purpose is to build, test, and launch your product the soonest, and then take the time to develop more features later. This helps development teams avoid building complex and time-consuming solutions that might or might not work. Doing so automatically reduces the costs of development and maintenance.
Speeds up the development process
Having an MVP creates a clear end goal for the team to work towards. It becomes a point of reference that reduces uncertainty, prevents unnecessary feedback and verification loops, and hence increases the development speed. The team has a tangible example of the software functionalities they need to achieve and hence works on building just that.
Attracts potential customers
As much as an MVP speeds up the work of the development team, it also allows the marketing team to start working early. Instead of waiting for the complete product to be built before implementing their marketing strategy, the marketing team can start building connections with potential customers at an early stage. Getting the word out on the web will attract future active users.
Team with Limited Skills
Since an MVP contains only basic features, some startups make the mistake of cutting costs on developing their MVP by hiring a team of developers with limited skills. They consider it better to hire a team of professionals to develop their final product instead. However, keep in mind that you may be saving money by hiring developers or designers with limited skills, but you will also be affecting the quality of your minimum viable product. It is advisable to hire a professional team of developers that have experience in MVP development services for your target market.
Insufficient Market Research
Failing to conduct proper market research may lead you to develop a different product that doesn’t suit your target audience. It is necessary to make sure your audience is in need of the solution you will provide. Before starting your research, define the goal of your startup and then identify your target audience based on categories such as age, gender, location, occupation, etc. In addition to your audience, you should also be able to know your competitors. Start by analyzing their early stages to learn from their mistakes, and then study their current product to identify what it lacks so you can include it in your product.
Number of Features
Keep in mind that MVP software development is an iterative process and not a final product. Therefore, only include the necessary features. If your MVP includes many advanced features which will cost you a lot of money and resources to develop, then you won’t have the opportunity to improve or introduce new advanced features for the final product. To avoid that, plan ahead and decide which features are needed, and which ones are complementary. Also, don’t forget to include the customer feedback feature because it will help you understand your customers’ requirements.
Launching your product at the wrong time can lead to failure in reaching potential customers. Launching early without developing the necessary features will make you lose customers over a product that does not contain the proper solution they are seeking. Meanwhile, a delayed launch time gives your competitors the time they need to develop their product and succeed before you. To avoid this, you must understand the market demand and create a timeline accordingly. You can also attract potential customers through a pre-launch online campaign to attract the audience early on.
If you still have doubts or unanswered questions regarding your product, developing a software MVP is a cost-efficient way to get clear answers. It also allows you to deliver a better quality product due to its iterative process and user feedback. So go for it and don’t forget to gather a professional team around you that can provide you with proper MVP development services.