MVP, which was first used by Frank Robinson, is one of the concepts associated with start-ups. MVP, which has become more widely used under the leadership of Eric Reis, allows start-ups in search of investment to get started without reaching their operational targets. So, what is MVP (Minimum Viable Product) and what are the examples? We explained it for those interested:
What Does MVP Mean?
MVP is the most important Lean-Start-up technique and is a product produced with minimum effort to understand whether there is a demand for the relevant product or to get a return from the target audience. MVP, which is the abbreviation of Minimum Viable Product, has the most basic functions (core features) (Minimum), generates revenue to cover the cost (Viable) and is a valuable, lean product that provides feedback and is produced without effort.
In more detail, the MVP enables the early customer, the early adapters, who love innovation and are not afraid to try new things, and it is the simplest product that this audience can buy and return to after purchase. With the MVP, which directly affects the future decisions of a start-up, both the ideas, the situations when these ideas are realized and the technologies to be used in the production line can be tested with the least amount of time and money. This product, which has the maximum return on investment in the face of risks, can be considered as a prototype and allows developers to learn from mistakes.
Considering that only 20% of a product’s functionality is used by humans, it makes sense to focus on product development after testing the market with an MVP. In addition to saving time and money, this technique is also effective in creating a fan group within the target audience. On the other hand, during the effort to create a product that is complete in terms of functions, there is always the risk that competitors will introduce a substitute product to the market, thus wasting time and creating a lack of demand for the start-up’s product. Material and moral setbacks in this process are also likely to shorten the life of the start-up.
For A Successful MVP
For an MVP to be effective, it must be produced after a careful process. Complicated MVPs that do not reflect the essence of the actual product will lead to customers treating the product as if it were the actual product and not looking at it as something that will be improved, and therefore not demanding it. For this reason, start-ups should fill in the canvas correctly in the first step of creating an MVP and utilize methods that identify the functions of the MVP.
MVP canvases are fluid. MVP vision, time and cost plan, solution proposal, strengths, customers, and their needs, etc. can be included in the MVP canvas. There are different methods for identifying MVP functions:
- If the MVP has 3 basic functions, production can start.
- The entrepreneur can decide whether the MVP is functional or not through intuition.
- MVP functions can be selected by identifying the needs and expectations of the early customer. The relevant identification and updating can be continued by expanding the circle of the customer group.
- All features of the MVP that can be clearly explained to the interlocutor in a narrow time frame can be identified as functions.
- The most important functions can be identified by voting among team members.
- Functions can be grouped according to their difficulty and usefulness and the easiest and most useful ones can be selected.
- Functions can be categorized into must, should, could and won’t groups. Must include functions that are of high importance; should include functions that are important but will be determined over time; could include functions that could or could not happen; won’t includes functions that will not happen.
- Before the MVP, prototypes with different functions can be created and presented to the users and the MVP can be created based on the feedback. The point to be considered in the feedback should be the user’s behavior, not their expressions.
- By examining the KPI of the actual product, MVP functions can be selected from the factors that affect this KPI. It is also possible to use similar metrics (KPI: Key Performance Indicators).
- Landing pages for different functions of an MVP can be created and shown to the target audience through social media channels. In the light of the analysis, the functions in the landing page that collects the most information can be determined as the functions of the MVP.
- Like the previous method, MVP can also be realized by collecting money instead of information. By adding a prototype to Indigo, Kickstarters. MVP functions can be determined and then realized when the donations to the prototype reach a certain level.
Once the MVP is defined and launched, the feedback should be treated with the same sensitivity as during the production process, and user testing should be carried out in addition to tracking metrics.
Examples of Successful MVP
Explainer videos on how to use the product were created and published on a popular link site. Those who watched the video, even though they had not yet used the product, knew enough about it to give feedback. In just one day, the number of people waiting for the product increased by 70,000.
Shoes in stores were photographed and offered for sale on a simple website. The sale made through the website was sent to the buyer by going to the store and buying them. With this method, the business idea was successfully tested at minimal cost and consumer habits were learned.
The founders opened their homes to those who were going to attend a conference in the US but could not find a place in the surrounding hotels. Images of the houses with map and listing features were presented to the audience through a simple website. After the popularity, the Beta version was launched.
Initially used by the founders and their close circle, it was launched with only a ride-hailing function. It was later enhanced by adding features such as vehicle tracking, mobile payment/credit card payment, and payment sharing.
The landing page introduced the product and asked the interlocutors to click on a button called “pricing” to measure the interest shown. Users who clicked the button were directed to share their e-mail addresses. Today’s Buffer, which could schedule social media posts with the knowledge of those who will use the product, has emerged.
Focusing on the early customer, a simple website was designed and only 10 high-resolution stock images were added. A few hours after the announcement on Hacker News and the Tumblr Blog, the photos reached 20,000 downloads. Based on the feedback, the site was improved, but the simple design was retained.
Would you like to create your own MVP and needed help for it? Contact Enkronos today.