Published on August 29th, 2018 | by Sunit Nandi0
What is MVP?
A MVP (Minimum Viable Product) is an option for startups and young companies that consider creating a new product or a new service. A MVP focuses on one key value or feature built with the least amount of time and money.
Benefits of building MVP
Businesses that only plan to conquer the market often have insufficient financial resources. Therefore, they cannot afford a long-term process of producing and implementing software or costly web projects. Developing a MVP is often the only way for them to find out whether the idea has a chance of success.
Learn three reasons why you should think about developing a MVP in your startup:
Fast feedback from the market
Buffer’s creator, Joel Gascoigne, had not written a single line of code until he became convinced that there was a need for an application on the market that would allow easy post scheduling in social media. First, he created a simple landing page with the description of the application and placed the green button Plans and Pricing on it. He posted the information on Twitter and waited for feedback. Then, he added a second subpage with a price list and, using appropriate tools, analysed which features were most often chosen. This made him aware that his idea was good.
Saves time and money
The concept of a MVP is to create a basic version of an application that only offers the most important functionalities. This can be done with a small amount of time and money. Thanks to this, you are still safe if the idea fails. Drew Huston, Dropbox CEO, before getting down to work on the virtual drive and synchronising files between various platforms, published an amateur video where he explained what his idea was about. It did not cost him much and let him gather feedback from his potential customers.
Quick verification of idea
When your mini-version product sees the light of day – show it to the world. Let real users check it. Do not be afraid of criticism. By receiving real feedback, you can improve those features of the application that can be decisive for its future success. How to do it? Take advantage of measuring website traffic in Google Analytics, make short interviews with users, ask them to complete a survey or ask them for their opinion on your social media profiles. You will validate your idea in a more reliable manner if you run at least a basic version of the software with the most important features.
What form should MVP take?
In the beginning, it is a good idea to prepare a simple functional mock-up that will order your design and can serve as its prototype. In the next step, decide how your application should look like. Technical work is the final step in the preparation of a MVP. Let us focus on creating the basic functionalities of our product so that it can be presented to future users or investors.
A simple web application, video or landing page can be a good starting point. Have you heard about Zappos, the US-based online store? Now it belongs to Amazon, but for its originator – Nick Swinmurn – it would have never expanded into its current enormous size. Well, Swinmurn founded a footwear shop… with literally no shoes in stock. His idea was simple. He took pictures of shoes in stationary stores, put them online and when someone ordered a pair, he went to the seller, bought the right size and sent the package. Only when there were more orders – he signed contracts with producers and distributors.
MVP on internal resources or outsource?
If you have the capacity to develop a MVP in your organisation – just do it. If you need external programming support – cooperate with partners who are experts in this field. This is not the most important thing. What is crucial here is to spend as little time and money as possible on the process. Outsourcing web development to Poland or other european country contrywill let you save time that you can devote to product development, marketing or investor acquisition. With a MVP, you can examine the needs of your target users, test the product and draw conclusions. Eric Ries, a guru of the Lean Startup methodology, when asked about how minimal a Minimum Viable Product should be, replied: Probably much more minimum than you think.