This is really very interesting and important question for all the startups and entrepreneurs who are going for the product development.
Before you go in depth of MVP ask yourself following questions:
Have you figure out the problem that needs to be solved?
Who is your target audience?
What kinds of resources you have to start product development?
Have you prepared the project scope document?
Do you have your business plan ready? Which is for one year, three year and five to ten years.
If you have asked above questions to yourself then it will be much easy to understand the MVP, because MVP definition may vary project to project. The definition of A minimum viable product (MVP) according to it’s founder Mr. Eric Ries is “a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers (sometimes can be only investors or class of key users decided using sampling method), and to provide feedback for future product development.”
MVP is concept of lean startup and it is validation learning i.e., for that version of a new product which allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort.
MVP will give you actual feedback about your product from the target audience which tells users interest, direction to begin development of product with all features, product failure risks and associated costs.
Benefits of MVP
- Being a Startup your focus is investors and using MVP you can attract your investors.
- Know your customers interest before developing a product with all features.
- Make sure that you are investing time and resources in a project which is going to success.
- Get the actual feedback which can add more features to your product which you have never thought of.
- Get detailed insights before you actually go for MMP which is minimum marketable product development.
Points to remember for MVP development
- Study all your competitors and focus on their problem solving formulas
- Prepare MVP Scope document and stick to it
- Develop Minimum functionality
- Maintain high quality
- Identify target audience and apply their behavior
- Define timeline and try to enter into market as soon as possible
- Many times team use the term MVP but does not fully understand it’s use or mapping. This lack of understanding results in incomplete MVP. My suggestion is “No matter whether you call it a pilot or MVP or first phase or initial version, it is very important to document requirements, prepare stories and workflows, prepare wire frames, design mockups, document all the validations, navigations and action items” and stick to it during development.
- Looking for shortcuts is not good idea when we are developing MVP.
- MVP is iterative process and at any iteration you feel that your product will not fly, stop from there i.e., don’t hold on that idea for too long time. It’s better you start thinking for another startup.
- Needs Vs Wants: Ask yourself “does the user Need this feature to solve the problem or do they want this feature to solve the problem?” Needs are something which is mandatory to have in the product while Wants are the features that will convince a user to try your product.
- The product you are developing is not about you, is about your audience and their problem which you are trying to solve.
I highly recommend MVP if you are developing a product. Let me know if you need any help developing MVP or full product to save your time, money and resources.