April 19, 2022
9 Main Mistakes When Building an MVP
Table of content
- 9 Main Mistakes When Building an MVP
- What Exactly does an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) Mean?
- Inner Stage Mistakes
- Wrong Target Audience
- Inaccurate Solution Concept
- Inadequate Product Strategy
- Development Stage Mistakes
- Skipping the Prototype Stage
- Unsuitable Development Method
- Feature Overloaded Product
- Too Large Team
- Post-launch Stage Mistakes
- Ignoring Feedback and Analytics
- Not Enough Marketing
- How Interexy Can Help
- Final Thoughts
Everyone is probably familiar with the term Minimum Viable Product (MVP). Being a development technique with the goal to present a simple version of a product to the market with the essential features, MVP can become a great part of the overall business success and help to get real feedback from users. This, therefore, helps companies know more about what users like and improve a final product.
The term was invented many years ago, but it gained higher popularity when companies started to realize the impact it can bring on how they operate and present their services to potential users. A proper MVP app development allows teams to test user behavior, market reactions, and the efficiency of their products. Regardless of the sphere, MVP can be an essential part, especially for startups that are going to get investments and are not ready yet to present the complete project.
However, with the rise of the MVP meaning, companies are trying to make an efficient solution within a few weeks and include as many things as they can. Not everyone knows what should be really included in the MVP and what is the best method to follow when crafting this product. As a result, most of those brands spend their money and time on poor-quality MVPs and do not get the results they waited for.
This is why we curated this simple guide to help you understand what MVP is, how it works with your potential target audience, and what are the main mistakes companies face when starting or finishing MVP development. By the way, read our guide on practice-proven strategy when making MVP for your business.
What Exactly does an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) Mean?
A Minimum Viable Product represents a piece of software that contains basic features or the product and is used to gather feedback from potential users. MVP is an excellent way to test most of a product’s capabilities, like value and utility in what you are going to bring to the market. An MVP should just contain vital features to allow the product to be deployed and nothing more.
While there is a common belief that MVP is something for startups and it is easier to launch the whole product, some of the market giants today, such as Amazon, Airbnb, and Dropbox, provided their MVPs before deploying the real product. The MVP can later be presented to early users, who will likely provide real feedback on the product’s functionality, allowing companies to understand the essence of their product vision from the basic version.
It is worth noting that the MVP is not just a prototype or Proof of Concept (POC). It is a completely workable product containing a limited set of vital features. Even though some believe that this product should be as simple as possible, MVP needs to be solid and packed with all the essential characteristics of a final product, such as user-friendly interface, functionality, speed, usability, and engaging design.
Taking average requirements, the perfect MVP should be developed based on the following points:
- Not to be overflowed with features
- Quickly developed without spending too much money
- Fast and cost-effectively developed
In addition, MVP development for a startup is the best way to validate a business idea. This is because a successful product will help reveal customers’ real feedback and their desirability for the functionality and the design. It not only can boost your development process and future marketing campaigns but also help companies reduce the price and time needed to provide the final application.
The key issue that seems to affect most companies is that they don’t know how to build them. According to a report, almost 70% of tech startups fail during the first two years from their first financing because their product does not meet market needs. And in most cases, the reason is that they have not been able to perform enough efficient market research. This is where MVP development services can become a go-to option for most companies today.
Let’s take a deeper look at the most common mistakes when building MVP and how you can avoid them below.
Inner Stage Mistakes
Wrong Target Audience
One of the main mistakes made by MVP builders is to create a one-size-fits-all product. This will likely result in a poor focus group, and you won’t be able to generate real feedback. It is vital to understand that your customers at the stage of MVP will be early adopters. These people are experts in their niche and are always looking for brand-new decisions to improve their life and business. And this is the best target audience for you, as they tend to provide real thoughts on the product as well as spread the information about your services, slowly attracting more and more users.
The main advice: Choose who your early adopters are, what they like, what they need at this stage, and how you will satisfy their needs. Perform a market analysis and compare with competitors to choose the niche and the audience.
What not to do: Do not focus on a large audience and try to reach as many people as possible.
Inaccurate Solution Concept
Before going to the development, you always have to create a product’s concept and answer the main questions. They include who your customers are, what pain points they have, what they are looking for, and the key one – how your product will exactly solve their issues. When you avoid this stage, you get a product that won’t get a mass response, and therefore you will just waste time.
The main advice: Knowing the exact things your customers are looking for and providing the perfect solution according to their needs is the best strategy for success.
What not to do: Do not avoid the concept creation stage and provide an inaccurate and too generalized user experience.
Inadequate Product Strategy
Your product strategy is the essential mechanism that can help transform the resources you’ve involved into high results. And you won’t be able to achieve something without proper mechanisms. While some believe that a good product strategy always requires a bunch of money, a lack of resources is also not the best idea. So strive to find a happy medium for your business.
Some of the most common risks when following an inadequate product strategy are the following ones:
- Keep your team overwhelmed with the work over being productive
- Issues with keeping the client engaged and poor retention rate
- Wasting money on unnecessary marketing campaigns and failing with the results
- Burning the funding
How can you improve your product strategy?
Identify your vision
Regardless of the sphere you work in; you won’t have any chances to compete without having a clear vision of what you want to bring to the market. There are many ways you can dive deeper into the business vision by either speaking with your team, researching the target audience, taking inspiration from other companies, or hiring business analysts if you want to.
Always follow your plan
Do not waste time and money in a rush. Create accurate marketing and sales campaigns and plan them according to market needs. This can significantly help you make a strategic product roadmap, as well as provide you extra insights when learning your future clients. If you don’t know how it works and does not have in-house specialists, check our mobile app marketing services.
Development Stage Mistakes
Skipping the Prototype Stage
Even though most believe that a prototype is not vital when talking about MVP development, it is the quickest and most simple way to realize your idea. Yes, it is just a quick representation of what is going to be done, so the prototype won’t provide any functionality or solve issues. However, it helps to visually show your idea to the team, designers, developers, investors, or sometimes potential customers. Depending on your budget, a prototype can be anything from wireframe designs or just simple paper drawings.
The biggest benefit of involving the prototype creation in your development is that it is a fast and easy way to create the whole scope of the product before starting building an MVP. When you have a prototype, you will rest assured that all team members understand your idea, and designers can move to more vital tasks without wasting time.
The main advice: Do not skip prototype creation and perform it in any available form to your liking.
What not to do: Missing this step always causes too much chaos in the team, makes development complex, and can lead to a very expensive MVP.
Unsuitable Development Method
Wrongly chosen development methods or lack of knowledge before starting the process are the two main reasons why 9 out of 10 startups give up during the first few weeks of building an MVP. Even though there are many methods you can consider specifically for your business, today’s two most common are Agile (newest) and Waterfall (traditional).
Agile has become popular only during the last few years, completely overcoming the traditional Waterfall technique in most vital aspects. Building MVP following the Agile methodology usually includes more straightforward and logical steps. Since Agile works by sprints, the team can quickly adapt to any changes, analyze results from each sprint, be more flexible in decisions, and all without negatively impacting release dates. Agile has also been shown to reduce technical issues, boost user satisfaction and provide a higher quality product.
A waterfall is also an option for some companies. However, it is considered to be outdated, especially for startups that do not have much time. In contrast to flexible and quick Agile, the Waterfall method is based on accurate planning, highly detailed documentation, as well as consecutive execution. The Waterfall is best for large enterprises that have enough time, resources, and skills to follow all its guidelines.
Feature Overloaded Product
As we mentioned before, the MVP should contain only a limited portion of features. Imagine donuts with sprinkles and glaze. So the final donut is the ready-made product packed with all features, while the MVP represents only a dough. MVP’s goal is to serve as a small representation of the final product, so when you add too many features, you fail the main purpose.
The main advice: Talk with your project manager and business analyst to find out what features have to be included.
What not to do: do not try to add as many features as you can, as it will run the whole concept of an MVP.
Too Large Team
We all understand that this challenging road to success shouldn’t be crossed only by you. To achieve high results, you will need to identify your own vision, make final designs, develop, design, test, promote, sell, analyze feedback, and also move your company. It’s too much for only you, so you will always need a team of experts.
However, there is a huge mistake that some think they need too large a team that will be unfocused and misunderstand the essential tasks. Keep in mind that every person in the team should always know how to and why he should perform something. More money also doesn’t mean more value and success. So try to find a company that provides full-cycle app development services.
The main advice: do not waste money on finding developers one by one, as you won’t be able to properly identify how many resources you really need. It is best to hire a trusted app development company instead to reduce costs.
What not to do: Do not try to find developers by one and do not strive to make the team as large as possible. Strive to the gold standard.
Post-launch Stage Mistakes
Ignoring Feedback and Analytics
Since MVP is the best way to gather feedback, you should always pay attention to everything that you have been able to collect from first users. Ignoring or not being able to focus on the data you get is the main issue you may face, thereby making the whole idea useless.
This data collected allows you to much better understand users, what is your more niche-specific target audience, their main pains, what they are looking for, and what you can bring them. This feedback is essential to promote your product, so you will be able to stand out from the crowd and be able to compete regardless of the industry.
The main advice: Keep the main goal of MVP to gather feedback from users to improve your future development.
What not to do: Do not ignore any minor facts that you can get from users, as everything matters.
Not Enough Marketing
Even though most people still do not understand why app marketing plays a significant role, many startups and large companies have already applied the latest marketing campaigns to their development process. Proper marketing can affect how you will differentiate your product from all others that have already been on the market. Since, in most industries, you will likely face a highly competitive rate, you would like to make sure your app is unique and will attract the most users.
The main advice: Make sure your mobile app marketing follows all vital market needs, and you cater to all user’s requirements.
What not to do: Do not skip this stage and think that it doesn’t pay attention to your success.
How Interexy Can Help
Interexy is your trusted app development partner that can take your idea from scratch and bring amazing results. We have in-depth experience in MVP development, so we can make sure your product will be done according to specific industries’ needs and market requirements. Since our team is made up of only top-notch engineers, we ensure your MVP will allow you to gather the most efficient feedback and then apply any ideas to the practice. Whether you have an idea, come up with the concept, need market research, marketing strategy, or just development – we cover your needs. Reach us out, and let’s learn more about your idea!
MVP is the best way today to start your development and enter the market without wasting money on unnecessary things. When built properly, MVP can bring a significant impact on the whole business’s success. However, not everyone understands how exactly they should build an MVP and what mistakes they can avoid achieving better results. This guide hopes to highlight the main issues companies face when crafting MVP and how you can avoid them. And if you want to trust the process to a renowned development partner, our team is here for any of your ideas!
What is an MVP (Minimum Viable Product)?
Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is software that represents a new product containing only a limited set of features with the primary purpose – to collect feedback from first users.
What is MVP in mobile app development?
MVP can be a first step in the whole mobile app development process, as it allows to collect the needed data for future app development.
MVP Waterfall vs. Agile In Mobile App Development
Agile is more suitable for modern solutions, as it allows to bring any changes to the process quickly, is more flexible than Waterfall, and works on sprints, allowing each team to clearly see the results from their efforts.