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magento & ecommerce

How to Get Your Minimum Viable Product Right

The rise of Agile development has led to the creation of several concepts. One of those is the Minimum Viable Product (MVP). You may have heard the term used in several contexts before. It’s crucial that you understand it when working on a software development project. Selecting the right MVP will often play a huge part in the future success of your software.

So, how do you do that? That’s what we aim to look at in this article. Before we get started, let’s find out exactly what MVP means.

What is the Minimum Viable Product?

The MVP is the minimum product that you can put out that will both satisfy consumers’ immediate needs and allow you to get feedback so you can develop the product further. That’s why it has become so important in Agile development.

Let’s say you’re creating a subscription service. You have a laundry list of features you want to add. Unfortunately, the cost of getting them all out in one go holds you back. That’s where MVP can come into play. You can define the minimum features your software needs to have to pull in users. From there, you can develop around the MVP and have something in your users’ hands far faster than if you tried to develop it all in one go. This creates an income stream and useful feedback for when you implement the rest of the features.

MVP offers startups with limited resources the opportunity to capitalize on market opportunities quickly. Of course, you need to choose well when releasing your MVP. After all, a software with no useful features will fall by the wayside before you ever get the chance to develop it further.

Finding Your MVP

The rise of Agile development has led to the creation of several concepts.

So how do you define your MVP? That’s the million dollar question. MVP means different things to different businesses. The link is that the MVP is what allows you to get the software out there in a usable state so that it keeps consumers satisfied and has room to grow. This means you need to consider all of the following when determining your MVP.

How Big is Your Idea?

Big ideas take a lot of work to bring to life. The more time you take, the more likely it is that a competitor will get into the market before you. When defining the MVP of your idea you need to figure out the basic building blocks of that idea. What features can you implement now to get it off the ground? What does it actually need to function properly?

Answer those two questions and you have the features that will make up your MVP. Your idea may be much larger in scale. That’s okay. You can develop other features over time. The point of MVP is to get the idea out there in a usable state so you can show the potential of the software.

A good idea is to sit down and write out the software’s top three features. This gives you a baseline to work from. Focus on getting those three features into your MVP and then build from there.

The Target Audience

Your audience will play a huge role in defining your MVP. You need to take a range of factors into consideration. These include age and gender. The additional market research will help you determine the need for your product and how much people may pay for it.

Why is this important to the MVP? The answer is that it helps you figure out what your audience expects for the money they pay. Younger audiences may look for mobile readiness, for example. Older audiences may focus more on functionality over flash. Your research will define what MVP means in the eyes of your target audience. You need to reach this base level of functionality or your audience will migrate to other products.

Marketing

The rise of Agile development has led to the creation of several concepts.

When you know your target audience, you can create a relevant marketing strategy. Explaining the concept is key when releasing an MVP. You need to help audiences understand what the product does right now and what it will be able to do in the future.

Many companies use short videos to show their MVP products off. They walk users through the features and build upon the base idea over the course of the explanation. You can also use website landing pages to explain the idea in more detail. The most important thing is that you advertise what the software has to offer right now so potential users know why they need it.

The Cost of Release

Offering any product to the public comes at a cost. That’s where the concept of MVP comes in handy again. A well-selected MVP allows you to handle the costs of release and delivery.

That means you need to understand the costs related to your software. How much will you spend to get a feature added? Is that feature worth the cost right now? If the answer to the second question is “no”, you can get rid of that feature from your MVP.

Figure out your maximum budget for the initial release and work towards that. Focus your efforts around the three key features we mentioned earlier, else you’ll end up with a software full of half-finished features because you ran out of cash during development.

How Can You Benefit from the MVP?

Releasing an MVP product comes with several benefits beyond initial uptake and feedback.

Potential Funding

Many startups struggle to acquire funding, often because they don’t have a software to showcase. With an MVP, you have something to show off. Better yet, if that MVP acquires users organically you have a new asset. You can show potential funders that your software fills a need in the target market, which can help secure the money you need to keep developing.

Validation

The rise of Agile development has led to the creation of several concepts.

Uncertainty accompanies any new software release. Even with tons of research to back you up, you can never be fully certain that the software will engage users. A successful MVP will show you who gravitates to the software and wants to use it. This offers validation, which can boost confidence in later updates and prove helpful in proving the viability of your concept.

Audience Information

An MVP will help you figure out more about your audience. Does the user profile match your research? What features do people want to see? How can you adjust the software to cater for people who actually use it? These are all questions you may struggle to answer during initial development. An MVP will offer more solid answers for you to work from.

Building the Brand

Consumers have access to tons of information thanks to the internet. That makes building a strong brand more important than ever. An MVP helps you establish a brand identity and get people talking about you. From there, every new update or release can create a buzz around the brand. Your first users are also the most enthusiastic. If you have something special, they will get the word out for you.

The Final Word

The release of a good Minimum Viable Product can make a huge difference to a budding venture. We hope you understand the concept a little more after reading this article. Interactivated can help if you need more information or are hoping to release a software to the public in the near future.

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By interactivated • on August 10, 2017

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