2020/10/21MVP for Startups: Why You Need It Before Software Custom Development
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MVP in Software Development As a Key for Stepping on Entrepreneurial Path

Nowadays, the marketplace is saturated with plenty of startups disrupting every industry with new ideas to build out a product. Without a doubt, each entrepreneur tends to reduce risks and increase their chances of launching a successful product. According to Forbes, the main challenge of startups is premature scaling. Why? Because businesses spend huge sums of money unreasonably on things that are not essential or do that using the same strategy as big companies do who have already acquired extensive resources.

Therefore, before scaling the business, it is crucial to understand the customers’ needs and evaluate the ways of how to reach them. If startups miss this crucial stage in the product development process, their idea will be more likely to result in a collapse. But how to avoid this? MVP (minimum viable product) is a solution. Moreover, investors are ready to invest in projects that have proven ideas with traction beyond. Thus, there is no sense to spend much time and money when there is no interest in your product. 

According To CBSInsights, 42% of startups fail due to bad product-market fit. Another two big reasons are running out of cash and an unqualified team.

CBInsights - why startups fail

So why does your startup need an MVP? Keep reading to find out the main benefits and steps on building an MVP before developing custom software for your product. 

What is the MVP in Software Development?

A minimal viable product is a testing version of a software product with limited functionality to solve early adopters’ problems for further improvement and optimize the product. Gathering feedback from early customers allows startups to test assumptions and elaborate upon future product development with the least effort. This technique helps evaluate users’ feelings, and if there is enough positive feedback, an initial product is supplemented with final features to create a full-fledged product.

Do Not Risk: Start Your Software Product with MVP

Your product is like a baby, which you need to nurture to grow a mature person. The same is with your product; thus step-by-step approach is crucial in its development. Customers’ involvement is the key factor for a successful MVP development process. That’s why you need to ask yourself: What problem am I going to solve? For that purpose, you need to identify the pain points of your potential customers and adjust your first stages to provide users with the highest value. Let’s outline the main benefits your startup will gain when building MVP for custom software:

MVP benefits

Benefit #1 Time and money efficiency

Since MVP needs a minimum functionality, and due to early users’ immediate feedback, your developers immensely save time and efforts, reducing the budget for developing a ready-made software solution. As a result, you will not pour money and step into an idea that is not tested by the market. Selecting a proper project management methodology is also an essential part of your MVP development. If you want to eliminate costly waste, the Agile model is geared to estimate the costs at every implementation stage. 

Benefit #2 Defined Value Proposition 

With the MVP approach, the development team knows the key features having an explicit focus on the project. A clear project roadmap helps avoid unordered actions that can ruin your overall product strategy. Moreover, cutting off unnecessary features and focusing on core ones will have a positive impact on defining concise value propositions and solving issues step-by-step. 

Benefit #3 Сredibility for attracting your investors

With MVP as a part of your business plan, you are more likely to convince investors and raise capital. Involving customers at the early stages of software development is an excellent sign for investors since they have proven evidence of product feasibility and usability. In this regard, your MVP stands for representation of your full-fledged product showcasing your intentions and goals in a very professional manner. 

Benefit #4 Feedback from early adopters

Your product value depends significantly on the market need and demand. Therefore, conducting surveys and research among first users will help you understand whether you move in the right direction. If not, you can make adjustments and modifications to your business idea before your product gets further into the next stages of the development lifecycle by analyzing its validity among early adopters. Furthermore, acquiring feedback from users in the early stages prevents your development team from correcting mistakes in the long run, which can be painful for your whole business performance. 

Benefit #5 Possibility to build customer loyalty

When you involve potential customers in testing your minimum viable product, both parties gain advantages from this process: you and your users. Whereas the latest get the opportunity to feel their importance because you show them you value their opinions and are closer to your product, you get valuable insights from feedback and, subsequently, build strong connections with them.

How Northell Can Help You Build a Winning MVP?

How to build a solid MVP that stands out? The secret is sticking to the step-by-step process of MVP development. Let us give you an example of the MVP of a digital trading app called Wealth Club elaborated by the Northell team. 

WealthClub MVP trading app

Here are the stages of MVP development:

  1. Identify the target audience and validate your idea. This point is the foremost starter before making further decisions. Conduct extensive market research if you want to provide your users with a real-world value solution. Ask yourself: Who your target audience is? What are their motivations? What problem are you going to solve by offering your product?
  2. Create users’ flow. Your customers have to reach their intended goals. In order to fulfill this task, you need to create a roadmap outlining the user journey so that you will have a picture of how your customer can move. Take, for example, Airbnb. They outlined users’ flow breaking down the logic of a user’s steps who wants to book a room: find a property – search results – property details – sign up – continue booking, etc.  
  3. Prioritize essential features. Brainstorm all features and break them down, keeping only essential ones relevant to your user persona. Key features have to solve your previously defined problem and make most use to your customer. 
  4. Develop the MVP. To get a solid MVP, a tech-savvy team of web professionals is required who can not only deliver fast and working solutions for you but inform and interact with you on every stage of MVP development. 
  5. Collect feedback. So now, it is a phase where you present your product to early adopters to capture feedback. 
  6. Make appropriate iterations. According to insights you obtained after testing your MVP among your potential audience, all necessary iterations are needed to enhance the product further down the line. 

Looking for an experienced partner who can help you build a quick MVP? Feel free to contact us to discuss all the requirements. 

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