What is Minimum Viable Product – MVP?

Would you like to check your assumptions about the problem, the solution and the market about your product economically? Do you want to get better feedback from your users? If the answer to these questions is in positive, you need MVP approach.

What Is Mvp?

The minimum viable product (MVP) is one of the bases of the Lean Startup methodology. It is one of its most interesting contributions.
To know the definition of the term, pay attention to its name and you will have many clues but to finish it to tune, we can say that the minimum viable product is one that allows us to launch the product with minimal features (characteristics) as possible so that we can learn relevant information from its launch and use by users through a series of metrics.

Unlike other methodologies such as Customer Development, Lean Startup does not extract knowledge directly from the customer. It is rather deduced empirically through the launch of various iterations of the MVP, controlling a number of metrics that can extract knowledge that nurtures the next iteration.

The Loop Build-measure-learn And Mvp

 

The minimum viable product strategy is designed to work with the loop build-measure-learn. With each new iteration, it will help to construct a new MVP. It works on the basis of a previous or entirely new set of metrics that you can use to measure the reaction of users and finally learn all this information for a new iteration.

The process continues in this order but arises in the reverse order, i.e. first conduct a series of hypotheses that we want to see (learn), we define a set of indicators or metrics that take us to extract information to help us verify the hypothesis (measure) and finally build the minimum viable product you need to measure and learn about our hypothesis.

The assumptions are varied; starting the first iteration with the basic question: is there a set of users with the problem that our product aims to solve? If the answer is no, you have to rethink everything again, if the answer is yes, you have taken the first step to success.

The Minimum Viable Product Is Not Developed For The Masses But For Early Adopters

Clearly, a product having the minimum features necessary to confirm or reject our hypothesis, may not be enough to please the most demanding entity. It becomes the bulk of the mass market.

However, there are a number of clients under the name of early adopters. They leave aside the rigor to embrace products under development and are only provided with the latest information to try new things. It is with this audience in mind with which we must consider the whole process.
Later, when you test the most important hypotheses, you will change course to focus on the big market. However, it is a step that remains still far away.

Persevere Or Pivot

Each new iteration gives us a new loop of MVP that revolves around the build-measure-learn concept. These iterations accept the hypothesis as true, as false or indicate the need to reformulate metrics or change them for re-checking.

With each new iteration or at least iterations that meet the main assumptions like the existence of market or engine of growth, you must make a momentous decision. You must not delay in time to preserve it or to pivot.

If the assumptions are quite accurate, persevere iterations based on the line you are following. And if you’re no closer to the right solution, pivot and change drastically the formulation of hypothesis.
This is one of the most important mechanisms of Lean Startup methodology. It is important to take this matter seriously without the fear to take the decision to pivot if necessary. In order to make a coherent decision, it is important that our metrics are offering us real knowledge about users, actionable metrics. They should also let us not be carried away by the figures of the conceited metrics.

Release Early, Release Often

Release early, release often is a mantra of agile methodologies that suggests us to launch the product as soon as possible and from there, relaunching very often.
Lean Startup is no stranger to this procedure. But if you go with it without thinking of the whole product, it can bring unwanted situations. For example, you can consider not to look beyond situations guided by short-term user experiences.

However, with MVP what we seek is to test our hypotheses for the product vision. It means that we try to verify that we have found a problem that our product can solve efficiently. This is the reason that early adopters are willing to pay for a solution. But how can we always have our vision in mind? Well, with each new release, we try to approach a step further. Then we test the minimum set of features that provide us with the relevant information regarding the early adopters.

Start Small

As discussed earlier, at the first hypothesis you should check whether there is a market for the product you want to develop or not. So before you start developing, verify that you have actually encountered a problem that people won’t be solved.

To test this hypothesis you can develop such a small minimum viable product as a landing page (landing page). In it, you explain the problems you have detected and announced that you are developing a solution for it. You only need a small amount of money to spend on a small AdWords campaign and landing page form. As a result, interested parties can receive information about our product.
The metrics in the initial MVP provide us with the relevant information that we need to learn. These are not metric vain as the number of page views or number of subscriptions, but actionable metrics such as the percentage of users who have subscribed at a certain time with respect to the total users who have visited the page in the same period.

These metrics simply allow us to iterate on our MVP. So you do reformulations of the problem and to check if the percentage of subscriptions increases or decreases. You pass hypotheses about our solution through a test. In case that users do not have any appropriate percentage, (set before making experiments) in a number of iterations, this will allow us to learn that the problem detected does not have sufficient market and therefore you have saved developing a product that nobody would buy. A simple landing page can help in deducing all these results!

If you are affirming our assumptions and adapting them gradually, our MVP is growing and adapting to all learning that you have been getting with each iteration, so that you approach the actual product with the lowest possible expense. Isn’t it great? What did you think of this MVP approach to product development? Would you like to give your idea a try using MVP? If yes, we are available at your disposal with all our expertise.

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MVP (Minimum Viable Product): Benefits of MVP and Tools to Create One

As a reputable software development company, we come across a lot of new ideas every day. And turning these ideas into working models is what we do. Have you ever noticed a man-made thing around you? Well, all the man-made things around us were once an idea. So, whatever it is a physical object or a tangible thing like an insurance policy or software application installed in your smartphone, every object was once a mere idea inside the founder’s mind. It was an idea that they thought after identifying the need for it, a gap or problem that can be solved. Resultantly, this idea is then translated and developed into working products that we are using today. The MVP (Minimum Viable Product) approach plays the most important role in transforming ideas into a successful end-product. One can never understand that a proposed idea is good or not until it is actually tested in the real world. 

What is MVP, what does MVP stands for? And why do you need to focus on it? Explaining it in one sentence is the first thing you strive to do when developing a mobile or web application. An American entrepreneur, blogger, and author – Eric Ries used the term MVP as “Minimum Viable Product of a new product that allows you to collect maximum amount of customer feedback with least effort.”

What is MVP? A Quick Recap

MVP is the version of a product or service that the market can validate with the least investment. You can say it is the most simplified version of a product or service that fulfills its mission and provides some value to the customer. That is the simplest definition of a Minimum Viable Product.

To make MVP a success, we should not make the mistake of spending too little effort before putting our product on the market. If the value provided to users is very low or almost zero, it can have a failure. Likewise, it’s bad to spend too much time and money to bring up a tiny product. Remember that for the MVP to meet its definition, and it should have minimum features that add value to the product when placed on the market.

Only you are the one who decides what the minimum characteristics of your product or service to the market can validate it. As you may have guessed, this is the sweet spot of MVP. In other words, we must meet the minimum conditions and feasibility; and it is not always easy to determine that sweet spot. If there is a minimum initial demand for its Product Viable, this means that the market has validated it. This validation leads us to improve and expand without having invested a lot initially, keeping the risk at an acceptable level. 

Take note: MVP cannot guarantee success, but it will minimize your losses if your idea is doomed to failure.

MVP app development approach is based on releasing the version of the app in the following process: 

  • Gather feedback from initial users in order to develop the final end product that the users will definitely like. 
  • MVP helps to promote the brand among the target audience to make it recognizable and familiar among them. 
  • To build trust in loyal users before releasing the final product.

Top 6 Advantages of Minimum Viable Product

Why should you develop MVP, and what is the importance of MVP in developing an app? Just revise your thoughts around groundbreaking services like Uber, Dropbox, and Instagram; they all started their path of success with MVP app development. So, here have a look at 6 benefits of MVP architecture:

1. Produce Valid Market Studies

Customers lie in the polls. But do not think they are deliberately lying. They are lying without knowing that they are lying. But how is this possible? In several studies, marketing and buyer behavior have shown that surveys about the intention of buying a product gave different results to the final purchase results. It has surely passed you by. Send a mail to your database asking if they would be interested in your new product or service, and you receive 60% positive responses. Immediately you think that this new product will be a gold mine.

But sadly, on the launch day of the developed MVP app, you only sell a few units. What happened? Simple, just like the difference between idea and theory, there are deviations in the MVP approach of conception and practicality. This is why when the time comes for the purchase, customers no longer pay so much. Many entrepreneurs simply do market research on the role and never use the MVP, resulting in products that fail to please the customers. The best indicator of intent to purchase a product or service is the own purchase itself, and it is the only reliable tool to market an MVP to be validated.

2. Strengthen Your Focus, Your Efforts On Your Value Proposition

Imagine the possibilities of a revolutionary new product, disruptor, just like the first iPhone launch. Although Apple’s iPhone Journey made many cool things never seen before on a mobile, it also made “traditional” things that phone brands invented. That is the market reality: Many companies do very similar things, both in their business models and their products. However, it is your value proposition that differentiates you from your competitors. Creating an MVP compels you to define your value proposition, forcing you to remove the “noise” of infinite features and focus on what really matters to your business.

3. Start a Small Initiative of Creating an MVP, Before Someone Else Wins

Maybe you woke up today with a wonderful idea that will be a unicorn for the markets, with something revolutionary that is the passport to success.

Well, certainly not. Put your feet on the ground. How do you know that someone else is not working on your idea already?

Usually, the first hits twice and has more chances to win. If your idea is innovative and solves an obvious problem, customers will rush out to buy it. And if so, why wait until tomorrow to buy? If you get a product or service idea, start a small mobile app development initiative before anyone else. The minimum valuable product template will help you get your product to market before someone else. 

4. Helps You Try Other Key Areas Of Your Business

Sometimes a great product works peculiarly wrong. Maybe it can be a bad website and a poor marketing campaign wasting hundreds to thousands of dollars. But sometimes, the opposite is also true: a bad product works wonderfully well in the market with peerless MVP marketing campaigns.

Unfortunately, some of the “gears” of your business will not be tested until they are released. For example, your sales funnel, and your mailing list cannot function properly until they have the product in the real world. Beware of the minimum valuable product explanation about customers’ behavior that is worthy only when you cast your product. All your business contacts with the real world allow you to isolate your weaknesses and improve with each transaction you make. Remember that a successful business requires more than just a quality product.

5. Empowers Business Spirit

There is no accurate way of knowing which of your ideas will succeed and what will be a commercial failure. The only way to know is to launch the minimum viable product and see what happens.

Suppose every project that features lists goes long, for example, six months to develop a complete desired product. So, more than one of the ideas you have will be in the pipeline of a long timeline because time and funds are limited. However, if we could reduce the time to 7 days, we have time, energy, and funds to launch many more projects. This includes even the kinkiest and strange ideas you might have.

If you are a passionate and innovative entrepreneur with a bundle of ideas in mind, I am sure that you will love the method of Minimum Viable Product. And, of course, the more business sets you have, the closer you are to hit great success.

6. Provides Shortcut To Your Customers’ Feedback

As the subtitle of the book by Dan Norris says, 

“Do not learn until it starts.”

You may think you know very well what your customers want, but until the product is on the market, all is an assumption.

By analyzing real-world data, it is possible to detect how your customers use your product or service, and you will see there are ways to use that you had not anticipated. Knowing how your customers use your product can improve the final result more efficiently and in a proper manner. As your product takes a few weeks on the market, you will be able to hear what your customers are saying about it. Listen to their proposals and feedback. This is the best way to create an MVP product: knowing what customers want.

One of the main advantages of using an MVP is that the user feedback is available before the final product. When developing a product from scratch and without feedback from the real world, you are simply creating a product that people are expected to need, i.e., the pure conjecture.

 How to Determine Whether you will get Benefits from Building an MVP or not? 

You will be pretty convinced to create an MVP of the product, but how sure are you that it will really benefit you? Keep in mind that minimum viable product examples are not the solutions that perfectly fit all app development plans. So, here are 5 key questions you should ask yourself to assess whether creating an MVP is a good choice for your business needs or not. 

#1. Is Your Business Idea Unique to Stand out? 

#2. Is Your Product Flexible? If yes, then how flexible is it? 

#3. What are your Budget Constraints? 

#4. How big is your Idea for a Development Project? 

#5. Is it the Perfect Time to Work on it and Launch? 

Minimum Viable Product Examples

> MVP Success Story – Case Study

Facebook – Primary Function for Early Adopters

The early version of Facebook was known as Facemash. Everyone knows the story of Mark Zuckerberg, who used to hack college servers and steal pictures of students. He created an app where users will compare and rate two pictures based on attractive features. However, that idea flopped due to various reasons, mainly legal violations. Consequently, it was just sold for $30,201, which is a very tiny amount compared to what the acquisitions are worth nowadays. Long, in short, the lesson to learn here is that the keys to success that made Facebook so famous today are: 

  • Facemash was just a minimum viable product template that fulfilled the goals. Surprisingly, it has none of Facebook’s current features, but it conveyed the idea of the app, which gathered tremendous interest. 
  • Moreover, facemash was released to students, who were technically the early adopters of the app. Thus, in this way, he received feedback as well as tested the application in public. 

2. MineCraft – Release Early and Often

One of the most successful and famous mobile games in history was invented with the idea of ‘release early and often’ idea. Although the initial MVP version of the app was released with minimum features, it was coded in just 6 days. The MVP model of MineCraft had a 3d-Landscape where the users could dig up blocks and transfer them to build simple structures. 

How to Build an MVP: Tools to Build MVP

1. Idea Phase 

> Value Proposition Canvas

> MVP Canvas

> Business Model Canvas

> Validation Board

> Survey Tools like Google Forms, Typeform, SurveyMonkey, etc. 

2. Building Phase – Non-Developers Tools

> Landing Page Tools ( Wix, Unbounce, Squarespace, Leadpages)

3. Measure – Learning Phase

> Google Analytics

> Google Optimize

> Hotjar

>Mixmax

For more complex MVPs

> Mixpanel

>Amplitude

> Intercom

Now it’s your turn;

Follow Iron Maiden’s saying that he sang years ago: 

“Be quick, or be dead.”

Adopting the correct methodology like Agile minimum viable product development, validating the core ideas, identifying the right demography, and taking under consideration all the necessary metrics to formulate measurable research data is the basis for creating an MVP. The value of MVP has a lot of potential that can even wipe off the market due to certain failures in strategizing. Thus, now establish the correct business model with advantages of the MVP approach. We at Clustox understand and practice the best methodologies to establish brands and help them grow exponentially. If you have any project to discuss and want to create its MVP, knock us

We’d love to hear from you: 

  • Which type of MVP would you start with? 
  • Are you planning to create an MVP landing page? 
  • Or want to take a big jump and build a concierge MVP?  
  • Do you have any other better ideas? Ping us right now in the comments.

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