MVP approach: pros and cons

Less than 0.01 percent of all consumer mobile apps/business solutions/websites grow into prosperous projects and become financially successful. The majority just gradually disappear; some start-ups even disappear before they outweigh the investments.

What can you do to protect your solution from being one of the 9,999? MVPs could be a way out. It`s an excellent option if you’re looking to launch your product quickly and with minimal costs, to validate the market idea, to test the solution among real users and pivot on the go based on their feedback to increase your chances for success.

What is a Minimum Viable Product?

A minimum viable product is a product (for example, an app) with a basic set of features that provide its functioning. All the rest features are developed after getting the desired feedback from users.

MVPs were first introduced by Eric Ries as part of his Lean Startup methodology. He describes an MVP as “the version of a new product that allows a team to collect the maximum amount of validated learning about customers with the least amount of effort.”

Many world-known brands, such as Facebook, Airbnb, Amazon, Twitter, Dropbox, Pebble, Spotify and many more (actually you may be surprised by the number of globally recognized companies) began their way to success from a minimum viable product.

Business Benefits of MVP Product Development:

  1. Cost-efficient: developing a full-featured app is a long-term and costly task. Depending on the app’s complexity, it may take several years and require major investments. One of the primary reasons why people prefer MVPs is because it allows the product to be launched into the respective market without making a big financial commitment.
  2. Delivery time: less development time means lower app development costs. The faster your product is launched to users, the faster you will receive feedback. This means you can work on the improvement of your solution, and release an updated version quickly.
  3. Fast feedback collection from customers: developing of an MVP is a good way to create an initial customer database and get feedback from them. If there is no feedback or the level of customer activity is too low, you have time to analyse the mistakes and make improvements. On the contrary, if people enthusiastically meet your project, you will know that you are moving in the right direction.
  4. Pivoting on the go: it is easier to test and adjust a project for a target audience when it is not packed with various features. An MVP lets you test a “bare” project and then gradually add new useful features.
  5. Finding investors: If you are going to attract third-party investors to your project financing, there’s no better way to do it than using an MVP as it helps to demonstrate all the benefits of your product.

The drawbacks of MVP creation:

Actually, the MVP product development has more positive aspects than negative, however several moments should be also taken into consideration

  1. Define MVP needs correctly: the process of developing an MVP requires that you be very tactical and targeted about what you want. Otherwise, you may end up spending more money and time exploring different options because your mission wasn’t properly defined from the get-go.
  2. Competition factor: exposes your product to the public and competitors when it might still be of low quality which could damage your brand.
  3. Choosing the right technology: the tech stack and architecture that are used for implementing the MVP should allow you to scale up the project in future

Final thoughts

MVP is an approach that empowers you to discover a lot about your users with the help of a working product, without overspending valuable time and funds. All you need is to plan your business hypothesis, identify the main MVP features, and know your target audience.

Even Edison learned the importance of quick iterations to reach the solution that customers require. In building a commercially viable bulb, Thomas Edison went through 10,000 prototypes before getting it right. Successful MVP development grows the chances for your product to see the light of day in the market)))

Anna Kozik

Business Development Manager