Deploying an MVP to validate a business model has become a widely adopted strategy for startup launches. Many renowned companies like Uber, Dropbox, Figma, and Slack embarked on their path to becoming unicorns by leveraging the power of MVPs.
This approach also entices you, which is why you’re looking for the best practices to do it.
Your wait is over. In this article, we’ll discuss 12 tips for starting your MVP journey.
But before that, here is a quick check for your MVP idea.
Before launching your MVP, it’s crucial to evaluate whether it’s compelling enough to capture the attention of your target users.
To do this, consider the following traits:
If your MVP checks all these boxes, it’s more likely to fascinate your target users. However, if you identify gaps in these areas, consider changing your idea before building your MVP.
Now, let’s get into the core of our discussion – tips for successful MVP development.
So, you’re good to go if you think your MVP idea is unique and you’re ready to build and launch it to gather customer feedback. Here are some tips to help you get started.
It is always wise not to build everything at once. Going all-in can lead to a long development cycle and unnecessary features that may not be used by your target users.
With the MVP, your goal is to get your product idea to market as quickly as possible and test it. Therefore, don’t get caught up in trying to make it perfect. Instead, focus on getting the basics right.
For example, if you’re building an AI-powered SaaS application for image creation, the bare minimum might include:
Once you have the first iteration in place, you can add more features and functionality.
While it’s important to focus on MVP features, including the basics is also essential. Just because you’re building an MVP doesn’t mean you can skip the critical functionalities for your value proposition.
For example, for your AI image creation app, the basics might include:
By including the basics, you’ll make it more likely that users will have a positive outlook for your product, and when you launch it full-fledged, they’ll be the early adopters.
An MVP roadmap is a plan that outlines the features and functionality that you’ll include in your MVP. It makes sure that you’re building the right product.
Your roadmap should be based on user research and market understanding. It should also be receptive to changes so that you can improvise as you understand your users and their needs.
For example, for your AI image creation app, your MVP roadmap might include the following:
Product design principles are important for any product, but especially for MVPs. Design principles allow you to set a framework for your future product releases. They represent your brand image, so avoiding them is no good.
Hence, you should make sure to use the following design principles in your MVP.
Ensuring the MVP design evokes the intended emotion and connects the user and the product is critical. The emotional design principle ensures that your MVP significantly impacts user engagement and retention.
It is critical that your MVP be accessible to the widest possible audience. So, ensure the MVP is easy to operate, even for non-technical users. This principle is important as it can significantly impact user adoption rates.
Use the following design traits to make your MVP usable:
Reliable MVP design is about allowing users to enjoy the MVP without experiencing any issues. This principle is important as it can significantly impact user satisfaction and retention rates at the MVP level.
So, make sure that your MVP:
Functional design refers to the ability of a product to perform its intended functions.
For example, for your AI image creation tool, your focus should be on developing and testing the core image editing features to ensure that they function properly and meet the needs of its target users.
Being flexible in your planning is important, especially when managing an MVP development project. It allows the team to adapt to unexpected challenges that may arise in the future.
Here is more light on why flexibility is important:
When it comes to development, MVP product managers have several options to choose from. Here are the top three approaches to MVP development.
No-code development platforms allow users to build applications without writing any code. These platforms offer a range of pre-built components and templates that allow you to develop various applications.
Some popular no-code development platforms include:
When to use No-Code development: No-code development is ideal for MVPs that require simple, straightforward functionality with no customization and have a limited budget and timeline.
Low-code development platforms are similar to no-code platforms but offer more customization options. These platforms provide pre-built components and templates. They also allow you to customize and extend them using code.
Some popular low-code development platforms include:
When to use Low-Code Development: This approach is best suited for projects with unique requirements that need integration with other systems or applications.
Custom development involves building an application using programming languages and frameworks. This approach offers complete control over the application’s functionality and design but also requires more technical expertise and resources.
Some popular technologies for custom development include:
When to use Custom Development: Custom development is the best option for MVPs that require highly specialized functionality or unique user experiences that cannot be achieved using pre-built components or templates.
In terms of development, here are the top considerations for MVPs:
Before developing an MVP, it is essential to conduct problem-discovery interviews to understand your target audience’s needs and pain points. These interviews can help you identify the problems your users are facing, which you can then solve through your MVP.
Suppose you’re developing an MVP for a fitness app. In that case, you could conduct problem discovery interviews with gym-goers or people who frequently exercise to understand their workout routines, their fitness goals, and any challenges they face while exercising.
You must brainstorm and list all the features that your MVP will have. This step helps you understand the scope of the MVP and what it will take to build it.
For instance, if you’re building an MVP for a food delivery app, some features you might include in your complete set of features could be a user login system, a search bar to find restaurants, an ordering system, a payment gateway,, and a system to track orders.
Although you won’t include all these features in your MVP strategy, they’ll help you visualize the future roadmap on which you can plan platforming your MVP.
Validating your product is the most critical part of an MVP. This helps ensure that your product has the potential to meet your users’ needs and expectations. You can conduct user testing, A/B testing, and other forms of validation to identify any issues with the MVP.
Suppose you’ve built an MVP for a language-learning app. In that case, you can validate it by conducting user testing sessions to understand how well the app meets language learners’ needs and identify if there is any issue with the app idea.
Developing an MVP involves prioritizing the most critical features that your MVP must have to solve your users’ problems. This step helps you keep the MVP simple and easy to develop, launch, and validate.
For instance, if you’re building an MVP for a project management tool, you could focus on one or two basic features, such as creating tasks and assigning them to team members, rather than trying to include more advanced features, such as time tracking or project budgeting.
This will allow you to test your app idea at a lower cost.
The MVP phase is not the end of the product development journey. Product managers must focus on collecting user feedback and using it to make necessary changes and improvements to the MVP.
For example, if you’ve developed an MVP for a meditation app, you can collect user feedback through surveys or user testing sessions. You can then use this feedback to improve the app’s user experience or add new features that users have requested.
One of the key advantages of developing an MVP is that it allows you to validate your product with minimal investment. Therefore, it is crucial to not spend heavily during the MVP phase and focus on keeping costs low.
You can start with a small project scope and pick the platforms or technologies that require lower resources.
Eric Ries emphasizes in his book, The Lean Startups, “You should never put too much effort in building an MVP.”
He is right; MVPs are meant to test your product idea and check its validity quickly.
So, it’s always mindful not to put too many eggs in the basket and go with the bare minimum to test the product idea.
However, this doesn’t mean you can simply go with anything. In fact, building an MVP requires comprehensive knowledge in terms of business niche and technology.
Therefore, it’s always recommended to go with a technology partner to build the MVP the right way and, most importantly, at the right cost.
We at Innovify are experienced in developing awesome minimum viable products that allow our clients to test their ideas’ feasibility and go to market as quickly as possible. Let’s discuss your MVP idea.
Product managers view MVPs (Minimum Viable Products) as a strategic approach to validate hypotheses and test market demand. They prioritize essential features that deliver core value, enabling early user feedback and informing iterative product development.
To prepare for an MVP, clearly define your product’s core value and target audience. Identify the minimum set of features required to deliver that value. Create a prioritized roadmap, establish success metrics, and ensure effective communication with your development team for efficient execution.
An example of an MVP in product management could be a mobile app that offers a simplified version of a comprehensive software platform. The MVP might provide core features like user registration, basic functionality, and one key feature, allowing the product team to collect user feedback and validate the market need before expanding with additional features.
As a product manager, scaling a product involves prioritizing key features, expanding user acquisition and retention, optimizing infrastructure, and staying agile to adapt to market needs and trends.