Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is popularly a part of the start-up ecosystem but today has become mainstream with well-established firms. Also, some use the term when solving a customer-centric problem. Companies like Amazon, Youtube, Facebook all tested the initial features offered by them till they reached an MVP before rolling out their services to the masses.
An MVP is a basic, launchable version of a product that supports basic features. Therefore, these are at the core of that business. Businesses look at customer feedback based on the MVP. That helps to improve upon the product, mitigate problems and debug the software/app (if it’s an IT product).
Benefits of MVP
Everything related to MVP guides a business towards market feedback & product finalization. Some of the crucial benefits of MVP include:
- Is the business idea a market fit or not: MVP provides ample feedback to build upon or tweak product offerings if there are very few takers of the product that a business is building.
- Reveal shortcomings of a product
- Improve product as per market needs
- Attract investors for funding the business
Thus, the MVP is a cost-effective learning tool that helps businesses to test the idea and understand whether to invest in the deployment of an extended and feature-enhanced version.
Process of Developing MVP
MVP provides insights into how a product or an app will appear in its smallest form. A good MVP shows the basic functionalities of the product and its ability to solve a given problem. In the case of software or mobile app development, they develop as the basic version of the app. And, there are only the most important features included in it. This is done so as to understand how customers are responding. Furthermore, it supports what the outlook towards it is. Based on these inputs, the final product (app or software) development takes place.
MVP helps in testing the product, designing, and improving the final deliverable. As a business owner, it is very important to understand what it takes to deliver an MVP.
Understand the needs of the business and its customers
Every business owner needs to first ask if the product they are looking for is going to solve any problems in the market. Market research plays an important role to achieve this. The research is going to provide important evidence as to which features are most important to include in MVP. Once identification is done, the next step is to understand how is it going to solve the problem; what category the app/software fits in; and how big is the target market? Then, this is figured out the business owner should also pay heed to ‘key performance indicators for measuring the success of the app/software.
Identify and communicate about the features you want to build
Based on the opportunities and understanding of customer needs, as a business owner, you will need to identify must-have features & create a priority matrix. So, this is an important step in the development cycle of an app/software.
Validation and Testing of MVP
Before giving the MVP to an initial few customers, it is important to test internally first. The testing can be done with help of friends and family members or by hiring testing companies. Once MVP is proven, it is still important to keep testing and taking feedback from early users.
Focus on important aspects of the app/software
The MVP must only include the most crucial features. At the MVP stage, features which are deemed as “nice if we have it” or features that enhance the cosmetic look of the app aren’t that important. Businesses only need to get important elements built at this stage.
Investors and real businesses like to see tangible results. Instead of just having a business plan and pitch deck, it’s better to have MVP in place to show the purpose of what a business is trying to build & achieve.
Move towards building MVP swiftly
It’s important to start building MVP as soon as the outline is etched. The outline and research give enough info to start building the MVP of desired product/app/software.
The MVP is probably going to be a fundamental piece of a business’s advanced product improvement process (initial models can regularly be shed, MVPs not really). It’s the first measurable output that gives the most compelling feedback and information with respect to the eventual outcome. In any case, it merits recollecting that the MVP isn’t a final product in any way, it’s important for a learning cycle that leads to the final product (it’s normal for the end result to look almost different from the initial MVP).
The philosophy of good software and app development companies is to regard the MVP as a test in which they test the key ideas with the target audience, utilizing a core-value-proposition-wrapped-up-in-essential-features-only version of the product. In this way, there is no straightforward way to create and reach your idea’s MVP. However, the MVP is the place where the hypothetical/imaginative side of a product meets in the real world.