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8 mistakes to avoid while building a mvp

Introducing a new product to the market is risky and tough. Product Market fit is extremely important for any startup. Startups should understand the minimalistic needs of their customers. They should develop the minimalistic product without over-engineering their and take the product to the market.

Let us talk about the benefits of a MVP First approach


  • Our time, effort and the cost to develop the product is optimized
  • Test the business hypothesis before spending lots of time in development
  • Understand a wide range of customer needs
  • Testing the UI/UX
  • Focus on Value Proposition
  • Creates a strong relationship with customers

A MVP therefore helps you to react faster to changing market needs and be contextual to your customers. Hence, to be agile, the concept of MVP has come in. We have, in the earlier blog, discussed on things you have to keep in mind while outsourcing your Minimum Viable Product development. To summarize, an MVP is a product comprising bare minimum features to satisfy the early adopters. These features are good enough for the users to test the product and give a good amount of feedback to make a final product. This feedback will help you build your product towards a larger product-market fit.

Why is an MVP important to a startup owner?

New products get launched by companies of all sizes. Even established ones launch new products consistently. While a startup has minimalistic budgets, a large company can afford to spend the money on product development. Many companies end up putting in much effort in developing an over-engineered product. Doing this leads to a severe loss of time, effort, and money.

Let us discuss a few mistakes to avoid for MVP development

Inadequate product strategy

Your product will stand out in the market based on the critical attribute. You will need to design a product roadmap to roll out the product in phases. Your initial version of the product need not be ground breaking but should connect with your potential customers.

  • There should be a working version.
  • Your product strategy fails if your organization keeps performing mindless activities instead of laying out a plan and working towards achieving those milestones.
MVP development mistakes Product Strategy

Choosing a large test audience

Every product is built based on a specific buyer persona. People falling under a particular buyer persona should be allowed to work on the MVP. The audience size need not be large but can be a small-sized high-quality audience whose feedback will be meaningful. Giving it to a large and diluted audience will only give lots of unconnected feedback about the MVP leading to a faulty product roadmap.

mvp development mistake Choosing a large audience

Feature overload

We get overwhelmed by the variety of features the competitors have. We always feel that we have to give more to our customers. We end up stuffing multiple features, even at the MVP level. What happens when we end up doing this?

  • The launch time of the MVP gets delayed
  • The MVP becomes an over-engineered product
  • We end up providing multiple functionalities that the customer might not find useful
  • We end up burning our cash faster without getting any idea on the end product.


mvp development mistake Over Engineering

Being over minimalistic

On the other hand, you have to understand that your customers solve the same problem using some other method. The customers will be using any of the manual techniques or using any of your competitor's solutions. You have to keep in mind when you would bring out an MVP. Keeping your MVP too minimalistic will not even enthuse your buyers to begin testing the product. This approach will decrease the adoption of the MVP by potential customers. You will get false negatives on the potential of the product itself.

mvp development mistake being Over Minimalistic

Inadequate Market Research

Many startups end up not spending time and effort on Market Research. Lack of focus on research happens because the startup idea is the only stream available to be monetized. There is an urgency to bring the product out to the market. They should finish the MVP. However, the funds available are minimal. So, the startups end up doing competition analysis only on a few products. The startups' don't talk with many customers. Many a time, the owner firmly believes that they have identified a gap in the market that no one has filled in so far. Multiple companies proceed with this outlook.

MVP development mistake Inadequate Market Research

Not having the right team.

Startups have minimalistic resources in terms of capital, brand, and people. Hence, the organization cannot hire people skilled in technology, domain, and built products in the past. Therefore it is essential to bring in outsiders who have complementary skills that the existing team does not have. Having the right kind of advisors, mentors, and development partners will fill in the domain and the technology gaps that the current teams will have. This combination of multi-skilled teams will help in developing better MVPs that the early adopters will love.

MVP development mistake Not selecting the right team

Ignoring analytics

Analytics helps you in learning a lot about your visitors and their behavior. An analytics backend gives you many perspectives on the basic demographics data( Age, Gender, Location, Time of visit, etc.). The engine also offers insights on the flow of the users from one page to another. You have to look at the analytics insights provided to give you many insights on how the users are consuming your data.

MVP development mistakes Ignoring Analytics

Ignoring User feedback

The MVP aims to give you the feedback of the initial sets of users of the product. Often, the startup owners ignore the users' input as they are a bit opinionated on their product vision. It is essential to listen seriously to your buyer persona. Not considering their feedback will lead you to develop a product that no one wants.

MVP development mistake Ignoring user feedback

Conclusion

You have to avoid the mistakes and stay laser-focused on your MVP goals in terms of the features and timelines. You have to, in advance, begin reaching out to multiple people within your chosen buyer persona. You have to motivate them to use the MVP and take the feedback. These inputs will give you a good insight into the features you will need to build for a larger market.

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