What is an MVP?
The term MVP has been thrown around for a while now, but what does it mean? We’re not talking about Stephen Curry or Cam Newton here, but rather, a Minimum Viable Product. Simply defined, a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is a mini version of your product designed to showcase essential product features and bring it to market quickly without going overboard in the development process. It allows you to collect the maximum amount of market research with the least amount of effort.
When Should You Build an MVP?
Entrepreneurs, we’re talking to you. Without even meeting you, we know that the last thing you want is to misuse your time and budget building a product nobody wants to use or buy. This is why it’s absolutely crucial that the first version of your product is built in an efficient manner with a view to your business goals. An MVP allows just that; you get to focus on the fundamental features of your product and test your target market to add the highest value to your business. If you have a new product that you want to get to market quickly and effectively, the MVP route is for you.
Why Build an MVP? What are the benefits?
The key benefits of an MVP are:
- Saves money
- The reality is, your budget is limited — and if that’s not your reality, you simply don’t want to break the bank by spending and investing money and valuable resources to bring a product to launch. With an MVP, you can build a scalable product that can be tested in the market at a fraction of the cost.
- Saves time
- Time is undoubtedly your most valuable resource. We never seem to have enough of it and can’t get it back once it’s used. Instead of spending 6 months or more building a product that customers simply won’t use or don’t need is heartbreaking. An MVP allows you to get the first version of your product to market quickly, without wasting time on a product that might be a market fail.
- Avoids wasting talent resources
- Why spend your limited budget on a full-time development team when you don’t have your product figured out yet? Instead of wasting money and amazing talent on a product that you’re not sure will succeed, an MVP will allow you to work with the same amazing talent, but at a smaller scale to build the first version of your product.
- Helps organize/determine actual product features and requirements
- An MVP forces you to get into the details of all the features and requirements you think you need. Most of the time, these discussions lead to the realization of features that aren’t necessary or needed, as well as new features you never thought of. The MVP also forces you to prioritize features and requirements, which makes it easier for the development team in the long run.
- Allows a platform for you to slip and fall without diving head first into the marketplace
- Testing your product with an MVP allows for you to research your product’s market. This may prevent creating features that don’t make sense or help you discover features that better serve users. It may even give you a view to new markets for your product. Quality is key when introducing something new to any market so early reviews and feedback about any bugs or inconsistencies will help you refine and perfect your product before launching to a bigger market.
What Does The MVP Process Look Like At Band of Coders?
There are many firms that will offer to build your MVP. At Band of Coders, we want to see you and your product succeed. We do that through a three month process we call the MVP Accelerator.
Our MVP Accelerator includes:
- Discussing the basic principles of building an MVP
- Reviewing your product vision and feature set
- Clearly identifying and prioritizing the key features and core functionality that will be built
- Scoping what can realistically be built in the three month MVP timeline
- Building the MVP
- Coaching you on the most effective way to launch your product
Simple. Hit the easy button and drop one in the bucket right?…Not quite. The most important thing to do is to choose a good resource to develop your product.
Who should build your MVP?
Of course, we’d like to recommend ourselves for all of your product development needs, but realistically we can’t save everyone from all the pitfalls of technology development. However, we can advise you on what to look for when choosing talent to launch your MVP. Find out if your development team is capable of:
- Introducing a product that allows for continuous market feedback
- Keeping sight of the product’s value proposition
- Establishing a relationship through emphasis on good product/market fit
- Demonstrating a successful track record in building products
- Avoiding assumptions about the market
- Understanding the difference between “Can” something be built vs. “Should” something be built
If you’re ready to help your business grow, call us today at (404) 418-6341 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to see if our MVP Accelerator is the right step for you.
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