MVP stands for Minimum Viable Product and it usually contains only the key set of features that are necessary to operate the product and understand its main function. Take any word processing software for example, an MVP of a word processing software would be an ability to type in plain text and save the file. No fancy editing capabilities, export options, or any other bells-and-whistles that are available in a fully developed product.
Why an MVP is important and why would anyone want to release such a rudimentary product to customers?
MVP gives entrepreneurs an opportunity to test out their idea with real customers and make sure that there is a true need for their product. If the problem they are trying to solve is truly painful and their product offers a viable solution, then even the minimal functionality offered by an MVP will be proven successful.
Launching the product quickly with an MVP will position the company as first-to-market and offer the first-mover advantages which could ultimately play a significant role in company's success.
Receiving feedback from real users provides an invaluable opportunity to create a product roadmap that is based on real users' desires. So, instead of spending money and resources on developing features that may or may not achieve success in the market, the company is able to focus on features that their users actually need.
Early adopters (first MVP users) become an integral part of the product development lifecycle and if they are happy they will help promote the product and build brand awareness.
Raising financing can be much easier with an MVP. First, you can clearly demo your product to potential investors instead of walking them through a hypothetical scenario in a power point presentation. Second, having real people who use your product provides a much better evidence of traction as opposed to market research numbers in an Excel file.
When developing an MVP, it is important to understand that the end-results should NOT be an incomplete first version of the ultimate offering. An MVP should be a truly viable solution that can solve the problem that the business wants to solve. Hence, it is important to strike the right balance between minimum development and maximum value. The MVP should highlight product's unique proposition without overwhelming users with unnecessary features. Consider the following guidelines when planning your MVP development:
Quality matters - since the product has limited functionality to begin with, it should be flawless!
Make sure that the functionality you include is truly necessary to showcase product's most basic purpose and functionality.
Pay attention to UX and UI of your MVP.
Research competitors and see what can be done better.
Monitor user behaviour and incorporate feedback.
Do not forget about revenue model.
Do not hesitate to start over or pivot your product if the results of the market test are not favorable.
At JetRockets we have helped many clients design and develop MVPs for various types of projects. If you have any questions on how to make an MVP or are looking for a complimentary consultation, don’t hesitate to reach out.