How minimum viable products help businesses keep up in an era of constant change
Today’s customers demand instant gratification. Mobile apps provide an easy way for them to connect with businesses, buy online, seek support, and more. A well-designed website can streamline the entire customer experience from when they first visit to post-sales support.
Tese constantly evolving customer habits are the driving force behind digital transformation in every industry sector. Businesses now find themselves under growing pressure to innovate quickly, and that’s where minimum viable products (MVPs) come in. This approach focuses on launching something that provides an instantly beneficial function for customers, based on the understanding that the business can build upon it over the longer term.
Here’s how MVPs help companies navigate constant digital disruption:
Decrease the time to market
Traditional software development mythologies lack flexibility, since it can take years to design, develop, test, and deploy the final product. In everyday customer-facing applications, that’s simply too long – by the time the software is ready for market, chances are it will already be out of date!
Whenever new technology becomes available, innovative companies rush to capitalise on the opportunities it promises. And then, there are the businesses which invest huge amounts of time and money into developing a perfect, full-featured product only to find out too late that they’ve missed the bandwagon.
An MVP presents something of a middle ground, since it lets you release a product that offers instant value to users. Being a barebones product, an MVP might only consist of one working feature. However, this dramatically accelerates the time to market, thus letting your customers enjoy new functionality faster. It’s about continuous improvement and innovation.
Give your concept a test run
We’ve all heard the horror stories of businesses investing enormous sums into a product that takes years to develop only to find it’s a disaster on launch day. Today’s customers are always craving something new, provided it improves their experiences and makes their lives easier. That’s why you need to constantly demonstrate that you’re on board with their needs by taking a customer-centric approach to innovation.
Releasing an MVP gives your end users a chance to test a new concept, product, of feature. This gives you the opportunity to collect valuable feedback. This feedback, in turn, helps you iteratively improve your product, respond to feature requests, and firmly establish your place in the market. One of the most important tests for an MVP is user acceptance testing, which helps reveal bugs and other issues which might impact the user experience.
Prioritise essential functionality
You might have a pretty good idea of what you want the final product to look like, whether it’s a mobile app, a web app, or something else entirely. It probably offers an impressive array of features and functions, and a perfectly streamlined user experience. But it’s still little more than a concept at this stage, and having the entire project completed in one go carries a lot of risk.
Let’s take Uber as an example. Uber launched its first MVP in 2009, exclusively for the iPhone and only in San Francisco. But it provided the essential functionality Uber wanted to test run – the ability to book a ride at the tap of a button. Of course, the concept proved an enormous success. Today, the app includes a myriad of features it never had in the beginning, such as live tracking of drivers, automatic credit card payments, and fare estimates.
Innovation and digital transformation are all about having an adaptive mindset and following the principle of continuous improvement. MVP development helps businesses navigate digital disruption with less risk, while incrementally increasing the value they offer their customers.
Here’s a quick recap:
- Accelerate the time to market
- Test your concept to reduce risk
- Prioritise the most important functions
At Venture Leap, we help entrepreneurial teams build and launch their digital products. Get in touch or book a free session below if you want to know how can take your idea to the next step and develop a minimum viable product that works.
Dr. Daniel Werner –
Co-Founder Venture Leap
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