According to Exploding Topics, a staggering 90% of all new startups fail. That number is not at all surprising given how difficult it is to start a business from scratch and make it a success. The business landscape has become increasingly competitive and unforgiving. It has become very difficult for a new business to gain traction in its desired market.
However, what if we told you that there was a tried and tested strategy that could significantly increase your chances of success?
The sure-shot strategy for a startup to succeed is by launching a potent tool that not only validates your product idea but also minimizes costs and time to market. The tool should allow you to collect valuable user feedback and refine your offering based on real-world utility. This strategy is called Minimum Viable Product (MVP) app development.
In this post, we will explore MVP app development and how it can be used as a smart strategy for startups to achieve success in their target niche. But before dissecting why MVP app development is so beneficial for startups, let’s first unpack what an MVP is.
What Is an MVP?
MVP is the abbreviation of Minimum Viable Product. The term minimum viable product refers to a product with just enough features and functionalities to draw in early adopters and validate a product concept. In the domain of software, the MVP can assist the product team in gathering customer input as soon as possible so that they can iterate and enhance the product.
Significance of MVP App Development for Startups
For startups, MVPs bring many advantages that conventionally developed products simply cannot bring. Following are the reasons why MVPs are such a huge leg-up for startups compared to typical products.
- Alleviate Risk
MVP is a relatively less risky endeavor for a startup. A new business that is just starting out in the market with a new product, would have to test the waters somehow. And MVPs are the perfect vehicle for that.
By testing out an MVP in the market, you would get an idea of whether there is a genuine demand for a product in the market or not. Most importantly, this product check won’t take too much of your time, money, effort, and resources upfront. If the MVP does not succeed for some reason, it would be easy for the startup in that case to dedicate their resources somewhere else. In comparison to discarding an entire product, scrapping an MVP is much easier and low stakes.
- Validate Ideas and Theories
Every business, to a certain extent, operates on assumptions. Every decision a business takes with regards to launching a product has some underlying assumptions that are either backed by data or completely based on whim. These beliefs pre-supposes certain things about customers to make predictions about their wants and needs.
MVPs offer a perfect chance to put those assumptions under a microscope and dissect their validity. Based on the feedback received from the customers, you can make changes or adjustments to the product, validating the product.
- Develop Based On Feedback
One of the biggest reasons why MVPs make sense for startups is because it enables businesses to undertake rapid, iterative development. It means that as a business owner, you can get your MVP into the market and receive feedback, all in a relatively short amount of time. As a result, you can quickly make adjustments to a product in a way that would make the product more appealing to the customers. By launching MVP, a business can get fast feedback from early adopters. Their feedback can then be utilized to inform subsequent development endeavors. This iterative process ensures that the end product is custom-tailored to fit the needs and wants of the target audience.
- Get to Market Fast
Timing can be everything for a business. And that is particularly true for a startup. A right decision taken at the right time can be the difference between a successful business and a first-year failure. MVPs, particularly when compared to conventional products, take much less time to develop. That means you can get it to the market much faster. And that is what is ultimately needed in a competitive market – the ability to beat your competitor and be ahead of them at every turn.
- Experiment Cost Effectively
For startups, trial and error is the way to go. A startup needs to quickly test product ideas so that they can arrive at the good ones, faster than their competitors can. Hence, it is crucial for a startup to be able to experiment and reiterate products, without having to spend too much time and money on it.
Because of this reason, MVPs are so well suited for startups. If your business is new and you want to develop something new and unique, without spending a fortune, MVPs should be your choice. That way you can experiment, test, and reiterate multiple times until you get it right. Most importantly, this testing and reiterating process will be quick, cheap, and informed by customer feedback.
The Key Elements of Successful MVPs
- User-friendly Design
User-friendly design is the key to making a website successful. A website should be easy to navigate and intuitive. The visitors should be able to find what they are looking for. A website that is well-designed and easily navigable, would drive engagement, induce trust in the user, and would ultimately lead to more conversions.
- Scalable Technology
The technology stack is the combination of programming languages, frameworks, and tools used for building an application. The choice of technology significantly affects scalability, performance, security, and maintenance. Choosing the right stack is crucial for successful web or mobile development projects. It sets the foundation for handling growth, ensuring optimal performance, and facilitating maintenance and updates. Outdated or unsupported technologies may lead to challenges such as-
- Unavailability of skilled developers,
- Limited resources for updates, and
- Compatibility issues in the long term.
- Data-driven Insights
Making judgments based on data in order to propel corporate growth is known as data-driven decision-making (DDDM). Companies may overcome prejudices and make the best managerial decisions that are in line with their strategy by using the appropriate KPIs and tools.
Businesses may produce real-time insights and predictions to improve their performance by using data-based decision-making. By doing this, companies may evaluate the efficacy of various methods and decide which company actions will result in sustained growth.
The MVP App Development Process
Following are the steps to develop an MVP from scratch.
Step 1: Market Research
Before initiating the process of building an MVP, you must ensure that there is a demand for what is being built in the market, especially amongst your target audience. The MVP should be solving a problem or fulfilling a genuine need or desire. It doesn’t have to be fancy but it should be focused towards giving one thing with the least friction possible to the users. Market research would allow you to land on an idea that would have the possibility to authentically gain traction.
Market research involves consumer surveys to collect information about customer preferences and behavior. The more information you can gather as a business, the better it would be for the MVP development process. Market research also involves closely following competitors and the products they are offering. It would help you figure out how you can distinguish yourself in a crowded market.
Step 2: UI/UX Design
The next step is design, which is an extremely important stage in the process of MVP development. The design should be convenient for the users. The trick is to incorporate a users’ point of view while building the design. The design will ensure that the purpose of the MVP is being fulfilled and that the user will find what they are looking for while using the MVP.
Step 3: Development
Development is the next stage. The most important thing to keep in mind during development is that you would need to strictly prioritize features. Only then will you be able to keep your eye on the ball and create the MVP you set out to build? Otherwise, you will be tempted to put every enticing feature under the sun into your MVP. Many of these won’t even be needed and would unnecessarily prolong the development process, not to mention bloat the MVP as well.
Step 4: Testing and Deployment
Unlike the traditional development process where testing and deployment is typically the end of the process while building an MVP, it becomes an iterative process.
Once passed the development stage, you will test the product. Testing would be done by quality assurance engineers who will work hard to enhance the quality of the product.
After thorough testing, launch the MVP. Take the feedback of the audience into account and then make changes and alterations accordingly. It would help you better accommodate users’ needs. Once the changes are incorporated, relaunch the MVP and keep repeating the process.
After launching the MVP, go over everything again. The company must get feedback from its clients on the release. They can determine the acceptance and competitiveness of their goods in the market based on their comments.
There are numerous successful startups that started with an MVP and found considerable market success. Below are some examples of successful MVPs turning businesses into success stories.
- In 2010, the beta version of Uber was launched. At the time, it was called “UberCab”.
- Uber started small and kept reiterating, adding features, and making changes to the product.
- Over time, the company introduced the following features:
- Live tracking of drivers
- Automatic credit card payments
- Fare splitting
- Fare estimates, etc.
- This “refine as we go” approach helped Uber contain their business expenses in the initial years. The team operated from a small base in San Francisco. Currently, the company is operating in 77 countries and is worth $68 billion US Dollars.
- Started in 2017 by two former schoolmates and roommates Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia, Airbnb began its journey from San Francisco.
- Airbnb was an idea that started with an MVP- “AirBed&Breakfast.com”. Pretty quickly, the idea gained traction.
- Today, it is a leading marketplace for vacation rentals and homestays.
- As of 2020, Airbnb has 200 million users. It generated $8.3 billion in revenue in 2022. During the same year, 393 million bookings were made on the site. It is a 31% increase since 2021.
If you are a business owner who is thinking of hiring a mobile app development service, now is the time to build an MVP that can take your business to the heights you have only imagined. Hopefully from the above post, the benefits of MVP app development for startups have become clear to you.
We would suggest you choose your mobile app developer carefully. Only expert-level assistance would get you satisfactory Android mobile app development. For any startup that is trying to push the envelope, experiment with new products and services, and are willing to take risks, MVPs are opening a whole new set of opportunities. So jump aboard the MVP app development train and put your startup on the fast track to success.