Building a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is at the heart of Eric Reis’ Lean Startup methodology, being that version of a new product that allows collecting the maximum amount of user learnings (supported by data) with the least effort. The MVP contains just enough functionality for early adopters or users who are visionary enough to “fill in the gaps” on missing features if the product truly solves a real problem. It is a strategy for avoiding the development of products that nobody wants by gathering the facts before it’s too late to make adjustments or pivot. IncluIT helps customers answer a critical question: Are we on the right track?
The idea is to rapidly build the most essential or a minimum set of features that is enough to deploy the product and test key assumptions about customers’ interactions with the product to prove that solves a valuable problem for them. It differs from the conventional strategy of investing time and money to implement whole product before verifying the actual usage scenario.
If there is an idea, some decisions may be to make some notes, designs or wireframes. However, companies will want to get real world feedback to test the hypothetical solution, that is where IncluIT comes in. Making possible the first thing built and having the first working MVP version.
After getting user feedback, either through direct communication or by measuring usage metrics, IncluIT continues improving the MVP, adding new features, or totally rebuilding the product. Identifying what ticks the users enables the eventual morphs into the beta or final product. That is not meant to eliminate a long term vision/plan for the product, but it is important to make users a significant part of the journey. Remember: “You’re selling the vision and delivering the minimum feature set to visionaries, not everyone.” — Steve Blank
What are the benefits of MVP?
- High ROI with low risk
- Reduce product development budget and time
- Get to know the users as soon as possible
- Finding the early adopters
PS: never build a complete product before shipping it, because that would delay the learning process. Companies can’t be sure to be on the right track until they have delivered real software to real users. The high-development teams at IncluIT help to get there as quickly as possible, making sure not to release a useless or embarrassing product. Even if it is a beta or alpha version, people always expect great software and judges by what is released. In that way, IncluIT strives to build the smallest possible thing to fulfill the basic narrative and delight the users, pushing to be narrative-complete, not feature-complete.