Thousands of new products are released every month. However, only a small number of people acquire enough attraction to be considered successful. In fact, only 40% of developed products make it to the market and only 60% will generate revenue.
The likes of Snapchat, Uber, and of course Pokémon Go are some examples of products that have made it big in their industries. Even if it is unlikely to become your product, you can still make it successful. But how do you test the market’s needs up front to make sure your idea is a success? Here are 5 signs that you need to consider for your product to become a sure winner to potential customers.
1. Find a problem worth solving
Before developing a product, look for 10-20 leads to help you understand a problem you want to solve. This is called “trouble hunting.” These are in-depth conversations, usually in person, lasting 30 to 60 minutes. Your goal is not only to fully understand the problem, but to first understand whether it is worth solving. The number of questions on the customer’s priority list should be high enough that they are interested in your product.
When initiating conversations with clients and investors, many entrepreneurs begin by describing products and features. This is a wrong approach because you do not fully understand the problem yet. The most important key to a product’s success is asking the right questions about its problems.
2. If you can’t sell it, this is not a business
Many entrepreneurs launched their products and wondered why their sales were weak. How do you know in advance if customers will pay for your product? Knowing how to repeatedly sell a product is more important than the product itself. In a sense, you are checking sales, not just products.
Entrepreneurs do not need a fully functional product to know if a customer will buy it. With test sales, you can understand the sales cycle, if your target customers are actually making decisions, if they have a purchasing budget, and improve prices.
3. The cost of customer acquisition is the key to success.
Many entrepreneurs don’t fully understand how they will attract customers and how much they will cost. The general rule of thumb is simple: the customer’s acquisition cost should be significantly less than the lifetime value. However, many entrepreneurs turn a blind eye to these baselines when launching products. Fortunately, you can use simple and inexpensive services for android testing.
4. Be aware that your initial product idea may be wrong.
When developing products, the final product that you should launch is very different from the original concept originally proposed. Through interviews and experimentation, you can challenge assumptions, rule out bad ideas, discover innovative features, and adjust prices.
Entrepreneurs often spend a lot of time on business plans and spreadsheets, which are fictitious in nature. Or worse yet, they launch products based on their original ideas and then spend time and resources changing products and prices to better suit their market. It’s the other way around.
By testing your hypotheses before launch, you can get closer to reality and design better products. Don’t make the mistake of abusing the Lean Startup method by smashing pasta against the wall and expect people to buy it. When people don’t buy (or buy in small quantities), entrepreneurs are wasting valuable time.
Needless to say, it is much cheaper to base a product idea during this initial validation process than after creating the product.
5. Perfection is the enemy of goodness. Simply submit your product idea.
Entrepreneurs should start off by jumping off a cliff. This means that, especially for software products, you should start as soon as possible. According to Reed Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn, “If you are not confused with the first version of the product, then the launch will be too late.”
Learn from your bad first experience with customers. If your product doesn’t work at all, people generally won’t give it a second chance. However, if the problem you’re trying to solve is big enough, if the experience isn’t perfect, the customer will forgive you.
Especially for software products, if the product provides sufficient value, it can be launched quickly with the least set of features. If some customers are willing to pay, it is enough and you can continue