When launching a new venture, it pays to be smart with your time and effort. That’s why developing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is so important. In this blog post, we explain what an MVP is and why you should consider investing in one.
You have an idea for the perfect product—an app you’re sure will revolutionize your target audience’s mobile experience. You spend years conducting market surveys and spec what you believe to be the best version of the app. You hire a team of people to sell and market the product and invest a sizeable amount into an official launch.
But, despite your confidence, consumer uptake is slow. And those who do become early adopters overwhelm you with feedback about what you could have done better.
All of the time, money and effort you invested into launching the app have gone to waste because you skipped one very important step…
Investing in a Minimum Viable Product (MVP).
A small acronym with a big impact.
What is Minimum Viable Product?
Simply put, an MVP is a working iteration of your product.
The idea is to give your customers a glimpse of the solution that you are offering and allow them to provide feedback for future product development. After all, you only start learning about your target audience when you put a product in front of them.
So, instead of spending years in development, the purpose of an MVP is to launch quickly, then iterate.
MVPs are commonly used by SaaS developers (Dropbox, Airbnb and Uber all got their start as MVPs), but they’re also useful when developing certain consumer goods like software-based tech gadgets.
Take the iPhone, for example. The first version of the smartphone released by Apple didn’t have an app store, couldn’t take video and only operated in 2G when 3G technology was available.
But the late Steve Jobs and his team continued to iterate, taking user feedback as guidance to develop what became Apple’s bestselling product.
How Much Do You Need to Invest in an MVP?
Even though creating an MVP is less expensive than creating a full product, it still requires a sizeable investment.
The average MVP development cost for SaaS can range from $15,000 to $150,000 or more, depending on the complexity of the app’s idea, functionality and design.
The price to develop your MVP also depends on whether you have an internal team or if you need to outsource.
What Are the Benefits of an MVP?
The notion of launching quickly, then iterating, may seem counterintuitive to some—especially those who pride themselves on perfection.
But investing in an MVP does more than just ensure you’re creating a product with true economic viability—it allows you to launch your venture while learning more about your audience and their needs. This is how you create a product stream that can grow with your business.
Benefit 1: Enter the Market with a Smaller Budget
As the name suggests, an MVP allows you to enter the market with a minimal yet viable product. In other words, while there is still an investment required, you don’t have to break the bank in order to test the economic viability of your product or service.
Benefit 2: Attract More Funding
By giving your audience an opportunity to interact with your product before it’s finalized, you eliminate the hypothesis theory of your pitch. By proving your offering has economic viability, you have a stronger pitch for future investors.
Benefit 3: Build a Product That Can Grow with Your Business
Think of your MVP like a magic 8-ball: the key to understanding exactly what your audience wants. Making iterations with a good understanding of your customer’s wants and needs will result in better features, fewer errors and an ability to brainstorm future iterations while maximizing your ROI.
You want to give your venture the best shot at success. An MVP allows you to start smaller and iteratively build up to produce a better, more polished product while leveraging your audience to make informed product decisions.
Not sure whether an MVP is right for you? We’re here to help.
Howbridge helps founders and companies analyze and pressure test the market fit of emerging business ideas. We work with you to build out the requisite elements to attract funding and gain early market share.
Book a discovery call today to learn how we can help you bridge the gap between idea and execution.