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What do successful mobile applications, like Instagram, Uber, Dropbox, Airbnb, and Spotify, have in common? All of them have been built as MVPs first. In this article, Fireart Team will uncover how startups can benefit from building a minimum viable product.

Admittedly, there is no success story without a story of failures first. Before big brands have met a sky-rocket success, they have been forced to live on the verge of existing at the very beginning. Commonly, a product should overcome many challenges before it finds its perfect market fit.

“It’s through mistakes that you actually can grow. You have to get bad in order to get good.” –Paula Scher

When entering the market, a product usually passes through many phases of user experience research and continuous improvement. It is almost impossible to develop a perfect digital product from the first attempt. The concept of quick success is the fad. 

However, an MVP can help companies speed up this process and minimize the cost spent on validating the product concept. Instead of investing in building a finished product with a full spectrum of features, you can start with creating a minimum viable product that has only minimum characteristics, which, however, are enough to make the right assumptions and see if people like your product idea.

Today, investing in full-pledged product development with insufficient knowledge of the market risks feels like walking on a sharp edge. That is why we commonly recommend our clients to get started with building an MVP.

What Is a Minimal Viable Product?

In 2011, The Lean Startup by Eric Ries changed the history of startups by introducing several innovative concepts to the world. The MVP (a minimum viable product) was one of them. The main idea of an MVP is to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least effort.

The MVP (a minimum viable product) is the first version of a product with basic features that allows gathering the users’ data, investigate their responses to a product, explore its disadvantages, and take timely improvements before a company invests in full-scale development.

Why It Is Worth Starting Your Journey With an MVP

The startups usually develop a minimum viable product to learn whether the initial concept will work for their target audience. An MVP is commonly simple but has all the core characteristics needed to deploy a full product concept. And, what is most important, it has a minimum set of features that allow spending less on development. 

Your startup can benefit from it significantly since getting all the needed insights with an MVP is less expensive than blindly invest in building a full-fledged product that will be later exposed to plenty of risks.

Usually, experienced software developers recommend offering a product to the predefined target group that can be interested in it. Before launching an MVP in the market, companies often run marketing campaigns that help make the audience more loyal and ready to give feedback. They inform users that it is only the first version of a product and that a further product development scenario depends on their response. 

Moreover, an MVP strategy allows you to start building relationships between a startup and its prospective customers. You show them an initial implementation of your concept, so they may appear to be interested to see a finished version. An MVP opens an opportunity to set the first interactions with the audience and motivate them to become the first customers when you launch the next version of a product.

An MVP helps minimize the cost spent on mobile app user testing since you are informed about many product infelicities at the very early development stage. It is a core artifact in an iterative process of finalizing an idea, prototyping, data collecting, learning, and improving.