Most of the times, as a start-up, we suggest that our clients build the first product milestone as an MVP — which is now an accepted way for all start-ups and entrepreneurs to have lean development with more focus on end-user feedback. This method works very well because there is no point in going all-in before you have relevant and much-needed data to validate your idea. Building an MVP serves the primary purpose of testing the concept with a limited budget. Most of the time, first-time founders have limited funds to design and develop products. So, lean start-up and MVP development can help them gain the confidence to raise additional investments as they get ready with end-user feedback and traction. If there is a chance of failure, we want that failure to be as cheap as possible.
Fail cheap, recover fast
Let us understand what MVP (Minimum Viable Product) is –
It is a product development technique in which a new idea/ concept and product is developed with sufficient features to satisfy early adopters’ needs. It is the first version of a product fit for release to customers. We should create the first version, which has enough functionality to be considered useful for key stakeholders and end-users. The idea behind an MVP is to build the first version with a basic set of features that allow the product to be functional and deployed in production. With this, we can accelerate the time to market for a new product launch and its introduction.
During MVP development, we get maximum learning from early customer feedback with the least amount of investment in terms of implementation effort. With customer traction and feedback, the founders and entrepreneurs can raise much-required funds and investment for continued development. Going from MVP to full feature product requires a high-level, long-term product strategy but MVP helps set out a good, data-backed foundation for future scalability, growth, and development.
This is how our MVP process shapes up:
- IDEA & User Story: Capturing the basic concept of a product, different users, and what a user would do in a product.
- Wireframes: Showing the screens for the apps to capture features previously discussed and the user flow — saves a lot of time when talking to a development team.
- Mock-up: Visual identity, look, or “feel” of a product.
- Prototypes – Functionality implementation to find out technical and functional feasibility.
- MVP – An integrated product with desired visual UI and functionality.
Once the founders have a basic idea about the product, they need to consider how to translate their vision into a top featured product as MVP. The product requires a description of functionality and flow.
Here, Wireframes play a crucial role in translating the idea and concept to a high-level blueprint which can be referred to and improved from time to time during the product development life cycle.
Importance of Wireframes:
Wireframes are the main foundation of detailed design. It is focused on critical components, functionality, and workflow. With this draft version of an application, we try to bring in maximum clarity in the requirements. This process is similar to how we get a high-level design from our builder or contractor where the key components and their positions along with dimensions are mentioned clearly. This blueprint is followed by each resource. Each resource plays different roles and responsibilities until the project’s completion and delivery to the customer.
These steps are required for our software applications and products. Whether it is a web application or a mobile application, we need to define a high-level component list, their positions, and how they are dependent on each other. In case we don’t have a Wireframe, we miss the necessary guidelines needed by designers, developers, testers, and deployment team. Often, we miss key elements, components or inter dependencies that can cost a lot at a later stage of development to accommodate changes. Wireframes can save our time, money and efforts by accommodating changes before starting the development phase. Wireframes can be used to seek initial level feedback from the key stakeholders and team to check if anything is missing. Wireframes then set guidelines and a blueprint for the teams and vendors for further development.
We can easily create wireframes using tools like:
- Wireframe.cc (https://wireframe.cc/)
- FluidUI (https://www.fluidui.com/)
- Moqups (https://moqups.com/)
- InVision Studio (https://www.invisionapp.co)
- Sketch (https://www.sketch.com/)
- Balsamiq (https://balsamiq.com/)
- Adobe XD (https://www.adobe.com/)