Don’t get us wrong; your product idea is probably significant. But it’s always a good idea (sic!) to get a second opinion – especially from software experts who have experience in your field.
You see, a product idea is one thing. But then you have to estimate the time it will take you. Find the tech that will allow you to create it. And most of all, verify if your assumptions and requirements are feasible – both when it comes to the tech side and the actual functioning of the product in the market.
At DeSmart, we’ve made product idea validation a part of the software creation process – and worked on perfecting it over the years with our clients. Here’s how we do it – and how you can benefit.
Dedicated product workshops for DeSmart clients
Before we start working on a project (and sometimes even before we take it on), we like to save everyone some precious time with thorough client workshops. So that, instead of wasting time and money on developing features based on wrong assumptions further down the road, we can focus on user stories that will move the needle for our client.
Here’s what we do during the workshops:
– We define the goal and priorities for the product validation process. It’s super important that everyone’s on the same page and that we consider all angles and include the business and user goals in the process.
– We decide how we’re going to measure achieving that goal and evaluate our progress.
– We put the user in the centre to make sure we’re going to create something valuable for them. To do that, we create user stories, user journeys, mockups, and workflow diagrams.
– If, at this point, we see gaps or flaws in the original idea, we’re signalling them to you. And you can be sure we’re not going to hold anything back. We’ll be sincere, and if we think something’s not a good idea, we’ll tell you. That’s a promise.
– We create the backlog by prioritising user stories – and that’s when we’ll use impact mapping (or storey mapping). (If you don’t know what it is, read on for a brief explanation.) Later, we’ll add user acceptance criteria and visual user journeys to explain them in detail for everyone to see.
– We’ll use story points to estimate user stories and create a schedule.
– All the while, we draw from industry best practices and share our experience from other projects to find already working solutions we could implement without reinventing the wheel.
What we end up with after the workshops:
– Clarity around the end goal for everyone involved translates into motivation and ownership.
– Time saved on what would probably be happening later in the project if we hadn’t verified it first.
– Detailed requirements from the user perspective.
– And a solid base to create an MVP in the fastest and cheapest way possible – so that it solves a real-life problem for the user and starts earning money and users asap. (More on building an MVP here)
And here’s what the product idea workshops look like:
Product idea Discovery Workshop
Commercial break: what is impact mapping?
It’s a collaborative product validation process management technique based on user interaction design, outcome-driven planning, and mind mapping. You can learn more here,
In a nutshell, it helps tie your product requirements with business objectives. A crucial step in the process of creating software. If you skip it, you might end up with a ready-made product that might just turn out a flop – because nobody’s going to need it or be able to use it.
Literally, it’s a way to define the impact you want to make for your customer – the user of your software. And eventually, make better product decisions throughout the software development process.
What you need to figure out first
To jump into the workshops (or validate your product assumptions internally – because that’s an option, too), it’s always great if the product owner prepares some useful things first – so we can discuss them and save everyone some time on figuring out the basics.
Here’s what we recommend:
Business Model Canvas
It will help you map critical elements of your product’s business model, so we can discuss it and define how the product can align with it. This is also where we can spot risks or inconsistencies – and find ways to accommodate or resolve them at this stage.
This is a super important element a lot of software development companies miss. We need to know things like your customer segments, value propositions, and revenue streams before we can even think about starting the development.
And since we’re a heavily business-oriented bunch, at this stage, we’ll also be able to advise you on the business model and channel it through specific software features.
It will help clearly see what features we will need to apply to align with your business model and provide the best user experience possible. It’s a tool to help us see how users will interact with your software or if they’re even going to need it in the first place.
This will also be the starting point for our user stories. It’s important to realize that this canvas will change as we learn more about the users from how they’re actually using the product – and that’s expected (and usually desired.)
There’s no skipping this stage if you want a product that actually works for your customers (and brings in revenue)
I mean, there is, but you don’t want to do it. That is if you want to save yourself some frustration and – perhaps more importantly – development time AND budget later on in the process, when the things we’ll discuss and define during the workshops pop up – and they inevitably will.
Create a product prototype
You will have to design a product prototype based on customer feedback and then continuously refine your idea to validate a digital product idea. MVP systems are extremely widespread in all major companies worldwide and are highly valued by many. Facebook, meanwhile, was a MVP. The original program was only conceived for college students and has been developed through periodic tests and feedback for many years. Unsplash began as an e-book website using photos taken with ten photographs on Tumblr, while product Hunt began with links sharing website Linkydink.
Conduct an Online Experiment
This makes for an effective tool that can be used in efficient product validation. This may require more money, but generally seems quite inexpensive. The primary method for this involves the production or marketing of mock ads or quick landing pages. This means that a product idea can only be sold to your target consumer rather than the real one in its entirety. You can then produce branded advertising describing your products and solutions and market this through different channels like social networking, e-mail and paid search engine advertisements.
Generate Leads with a Landing Page
Using your websites to generate leads can help your business grow. In exchange for receiving an offer from an individual for some advantages of the product you offer, you could create an email list. Your reward for receiving an email can vary. It may have a minimal viable product or provide a free version when it’s released, for example, free of charge. Whatever it is, you must attract people, or you’ll have low response rates. Landing pages will be helpful for testing product price potentials, primarily with MVPs.
Use Crowdfunding Campaigns
Another experiment you should try to measure product viability is crowdfunding. Crowdfunding campaigns generate money and show the demand for your product and whether people want to pay for the product. Let me give an example of a crowdfunding project: Kickofflabs. Ideally, your landing page should generate warm leads before your crowdfunding campaign. It increases your chances of getting more money. Like our examples, a landing page campaign collected emails from a client—source: kickofflab.
Use Your Mailing List
A list of interested subscribers will help with your product validation. Emails are an excellent opportunity to engage your audience by delivering valuable feedback—the key to obtaining subscriber commitments before launch is obtaining subscribers’ commitments. Get the customers’ participation by signing up to receive the product in the first place. It is essential to collect the registration in advance.
Prototypes are very primitive versions of our products and usually only offer essential solutions or describe what you want. It is also considered an excellent way to present ideas. Prototypes take little effort to build, so they can be anything as essential as sketches or 3D drawings if desired. A further form for prototyping could have a minimum feasible product (MBP). MVPs are a less functional version of business software, even in the most primitive production stage. An MVP may be a YouTube video tutorial or educational blog.
Identify your target market
Knowing your target audience helps you decide if your idea is excellent. You can see if your product can attract a natural consumer base if you want one. You can easily find people to solve a specific problem by pointing at a problem that a product solves and searching for people with a particular situation. Having a target audience doesn’t mean that you know them. Having a deep understanding of them is essential. This information can affect your product designs. What are the reasons?
Conduct online surveys
Your online research may involve interviews with videos of people you are looking for. E-mail Questionnaires will help you find out if people are interested in solving your problems. Get started by generating email addresses from your existing contacts. You have to make the survey easy to understand and written in an exciting way to attract the reader. This is an example email of survey Sources: Mail charts. Note that this was a brand email sent primarily to customers who knew about the product.
Start with a narrow audience
Is starting with a more narrow target group or problem area of your product considered good practice? While this is no problem, it is far less realistic than defining a niche. This requires more extended time and money than most other options. If your idea is using an eCommerce platform with a broad and diverse inventory, software, or site that provides multiple features, trying to sell to a larger audience may not prove lucrative.
Conduct field research
It may sound old-school, but it is arguably a cheaper and best way to discover if someone needs a product. Think about people suitable for your target audience; go to places where you are most likely to meet such people. This may involve shopping centres, parks, workplace areas etc. Possibly a friend or family member. It aims to invite them to reveal how the possible issue will be solved. It’s easy to say.
Conduct market research
People do not buy products purely for a reason other than attractive qualities. People buy things to solve problems. Those who have chosen careers might want the opportunity to learn new skills to earn promotions in their jobs. Some may know something which can increase their social status they’re in.
What is a buyer persona, and why do you need one?
A buyer persona is the persona of a person who represents the personality and traits of some customers. Businesses should have different personas; often, they’re aimed at multiple audiences. You should target only a single segment to attract a highly diversified audience to a test product. To begin, you may need this template from Xtensio and HubSpot. The buyer persona will include basic information, including age range, income level, education level, and location.
Why does product validation matter?
Product validations are crucial to building new businesses or products. It is profitable for entrepreneurs, companies, teams and customers. Almost no business will succeed until it validates its business model first. Companies all across the globe use very different processes to ensure they do not build something that everyone believes should be made. Let’s review those exact processes here to help model them yourself.
Methods for feedback and fast validation
As we see, design sprints involve many aspects. Perhaps you have not taken this step yet? I don’t worry. If you want to validate software at a lower price, you can start working with the design sprints when you’re ready. How do people get quick feedback on their website?
Before you begin testing a product validation program, you should thoroughly examine the various alternatives. You will also get a chance to talk to prospective buyers. Show how the company handles the services your application could provide. You may be surprised by how many people use spreadsheets but will not pay for what they want.
Use Google Keyword Search Engine Optimization software such as Ubersuggest for keyword research. What search types do I use for shorttail variations on my concepts? What is the average number of search queries per month on a particular topic? If it appears in Google Trends, it will appear in your searches.
Research the market
Researching markets requires more research to uncover your product’s potential customers. The information typically outlines the market size, possible competition and consumer behaviour. Find your market potential and find out market dynamics.
Analyse your competition
Research competition can be a very effective means of understanding the potential market. Research is based upon methods that are effective but can be cost-effective too. You will find a lot of valuable tools to reduce your expenses, which can help you get excellent results. Google’s search engine identifies online presences for existing competitors and provides a list to help determine their ranking. You can then use it to determine the terms the customer uses for searching for the product or the problem you solve. The easiest way to choose an internet name is to use the most popular keywords.
Use Google Trends
Google Trends provides an interactive way to see how the topic’s trends change over time. So you can determine how important the products are and how important they can be for the target audience. If you want to start an online auto-tracking software startup, you can find out by Google Trends how many people care about tracking technology. Google Trend data for automobile tracking application example. You can also compare trends in two subjects. They are comparing Search Results for Synonyms. This may help when considering an alternative concept.
Validate your production needs
Identifying and researching your target market helps you determine how to build your product. This means you need the knowledge you will need to create a product. All-natural products require the following information. Capitals. Finance at every stage of the project, including validation and commercialisation of product launches and ongoing production, as long as initial business expenses are paid and exceed Production costs. Infrastructures.
Product validation for different industries and products
Of course, the product validations differ across industries and regions. How can a L’Oréal lipstick be validated? Below are some of the essential factors to validate a product.
Fast-moving consumer goods
Branded brands selling consumer goods use a very different approach to validation than eCommerce companies. These companies will often carry out costly market surveys to minimise the waste from products that don’t sell. Brands could lose millions if their products don’t sell. Veylinx is a revolutionary firm offering auctions as a substitute for market surveys. Consumer bids on consumer products give brands real insights into how much their clients will spend. Fast-changing consumers use this auction to test:
Software and SaaS
Software firms also need validation before building software, although for different reasons. Software is not about production and distribution but software development time and production. Hiring a professional software development team can be extremely expensive. Software development requires a wide variety of developers and testing resources, dev-O-OPs, and UX. SaaS companies often design their software and conduct user testing to reduce costs. Even big companies, including Dropbox, began with waitlists.
Productised service providers may have more straightforward approaches to product validation. It is unlikely that these companies will spend money to sell the product. In this context, the firms will advertise products and services on their website or through telephone calls. They give this customer service and continue with the most coveted product. We will concentrate on validating products for specific software for the rest of our Guides.
E-Commerce companies can validate product validation with competitor research, search engine optimisation key phrase/keyword analysis or marketing research. The company could have Google ads on a landing page or a KickStarter cKickstarterampaign.
Before we start working on a project (and sometimes even before we take it on), we like to
Why is product validation important?
Validated products allow you to predict people’s interest in your product. However, product approval may help improve the success of your product if your company conducts a product validation test.
Why product validation matters?
Product validations are crucial to building new businesses or products. It is profitable for entrepreneurs, companies, teams and customers. Almost no business is going to succeed until it validates its business model first. Companies all across the globe use very different processes to ensure they do not build something that everyone believes should be built.