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Minimum Viable Products: The True MVP of The Product Development Process

What are the advantages of utilising a minimal viable product (MVP) approach for your next product?

Rather than attempting to ‘wow’ customers with something grandiose and expensive, the minimum viable product (MVP) approach is designed to provide just enough features to answer key market questions, making it possible to deliver within budget. This means prioritising functionality over form and developing something that fits the market without breaking the bank.  

Let’s start from the beginning: What is a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)?  

A Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is a product with just enough features to satisfy early customers and provide feedback for future product development. It is a way of testing the market with a product before investing more money and resources into further development. An MVP typically contains the most essential features of a product, allowing developers to quickly launch and test their idea. This helps to create a feedback loop that can be used to guide the development of a more complete product.  

An MVP makes it easy to understand the concept and see the value it can bring to a business in its most basic form, without making it overly complicated. 

Have a look at this example of an MVP: 

Dropbox is an innovative file-hosting service founded in 2007 by MIT students Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi. It has since grown to become one of the leading cloud storage services, offering customers a wide range of features such as personal cloud, client software, and file synchronisation.  

To test their idea before investing heavily into building hardware infrastructure for Dropbox, they created a simple video (as the MVP) that showed prospective investors what it could offer once launched. This proved to be incredibly successful with over 70 000 signups from people eager to learn more about this new concept. The feedback received was vital in helping shape Dropbox into its current form today – providing professionals with reliable access to their files no matter where they are located or which device they are using. 

An MVP can help you to save both time and money: 

MVPs are now the de-facto way to test product ideas, validate business models, and build audiences – which turned the product development cycle on its head in the best possible way. Many successful start-ups make use of MVPs as part of their product development process.   

The true value of an MVP is not in the product itself, but in what you learn from it. 

Now, you might be asking yourself the following question: “How do we know if we should build an MVP?” This question has never been as simple as it seems. After all, you might think that building a product would be the fastest way to get feedback and learn what people want (and don’t want) from your idea. However, we strongly recommend that most companies begin their journey of creating a bespoke system by starting with an MVP. This approach is beneficial for two key reasons; cost and time, as custom-built systems can be expensive and, without clear boundaries in place, can quickly become a costly endeavour. Additionally, when it comes to ongoing modifications, many companies underestimate the cost and frequency of changes that can be required.     

In conclusion, adopting a minimum viable product method can help you save time and money on your product development. If you have an idea for a new project, Warp Development can help you to make your vision come to life.
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