It is far from the hardest thing to come up with an idea for your future product or even implement it. What is really difficult is to come up with an idea which is in demand, the one that people will be ready to pay you for. Actually, if you cannot currently find something on the market, it does not mean you have come up with a brilliant idea. The product or service like this may quite be unclaimed by the users.
This is precisely why you have to make sure you examine the market and validate your startup idea before you set to work on the project. No matter how much experience you have and how confident you are in your idea, you definitely must not skip this step.
In this article, I will share simple and quick ways to test startup idea, be it a web service, a mobile app, or a software product.
1. Start with Google
It may sound obvious, but such trivial things are often overlooked. Take a few evenings and look for some information on similar projects, using the search engine, find some similar topics on forums, or even search for them on YouTube.
Find out if someone has done something similar before. Was their effort successful? If not, check what they did wrong and how you can avoid similar mistakes. Search the related niches for any examples that may prove useful to you as well.
2. Make Sure the Market Does Exist
No demand on the market is the primary reason why most startups fail. You have to make sure you will solve a real problem with your startup, and this problem is relevant for a sufficiently large number of people.
To quickly estimate if your product will potentially have a demand on the market, you can resort to the services analyzing search query statistics. Each of them has a similar operating principle: you enter keywords and get statistic data on them, demand dynamics, as well as similar search phrases. For instance:
To test your startup idea for demand potential, I recommend you to use the following tools:
3. Asking Your Target Audience
Never ask your friends or acquaintances about it. They may provide you with deliberately biased answers, and the sample like this is not large enough. To validate your startup idea you have to ask those people who are your potential buyers.
To do so, you can create an opinion poll in a thematic group on a social network, start a thread on a thematic forum, or use the Quora.com question-and-answer website. Random people will provide you with more valuable feedback.
Besides, if you have a sufficient budget, you can order a survey conducted in focus groups organized by data analytic companies.
4. Studying Your Competitors
If you personally have never created such products before and have not worked in the target niche, you will most surely find people to peep on and learn something interesting from them. When you study your competitors, you will know how other companies in the industry solve similar problems, and what you can borrow from them to adapt it for your own startup. Even a simple search in the App Store and Google Play will allow you to find a lot of interesting things.
At this point, you have to remember and adhere to three simple rules as follows:
- Never try to completely avoid competition. In places with no competition, you will most likely earn no money.
- Pondering on an idea, analyze the already formed people’s needs. Think about how you can satisfy them faster, in a more convenient way, or cheaper.
- Do not replicate any startup existing on the market.
You can create a startup on a highly competitive market, implementing a unique idea at the same time. Everything depends on your approach to product implementation, the value you provide to your audience, and how efficiently your product solves their problems.
5. Announce Your Project on Product Hunt
This platform is designed to discover and share startups, and users can vote for their favorite projects, lifting them up to the top, as well as discuss them, giving valuable advice to their founders. These comments will help you understand the value of your product, comprehend whether you are moving in the right direction, and see the parts requiring your attention and rethinking.
If your project becomes popular on Product Hunt and gets to the recommended list, it can attract the attention of tens of thousands of users.
Get ready to make an attractive description of your product, highlighting its value for potential users. Create a beautiful avatar and high-quality graphics (it is best to order them from a professional designer). You can also make a video and provide favorable conditions for visitors who come from Product Hunt.
Make a list of opinion leaders from the relevant industry, a list of those who have a lot of followers on social networks and who are interested in your product, and ask them to write about it on their pages. Many of their readers will be able to vote for your product on the platform.
We recommend: Mobile App Development Process: Step-by-Step Guide.
6. Create a Coming Soon Landing Page
You can do it even without MVP, all you need is to understand the way you see your future product. You will have to invest a bit in advertising, but this kind of testing your startup idea will ensure your higher confidence in the relevance of the product you are about to create.
To conduct such testing, follow the algorithm below:
- Register a domain.
- Make a landing page on WordPress or any other website builder, describing the project and posting relevant images.
- Add a form for users to leave their e-mail if they want to get informational letters on the product release.
- Connect web analytics and launch an advertising campaign in Google Ads/Facebook Ads.
- Analyze the results and draw conclusions.
As a bonus, mind the fact that if you successfully confirm your startup idea and manage to launch the product in the future, you will have a ready database of your potential customers’ email addresses.
7. Finally, Learn How to Make Money on It
Even the brightest idea may end up in a failure if startup founders do not know how to make money on their product. You have to comprehend how to monetize your startup, what the potential market size your product has, and how many paying customers you have to attract to reach a break-even point at least.
Study how other companies make money on their products and analyze whether your target audience is solvent enough. You may need to imbed the monetization feature in your future product as son as at the initial stage of its development.
Always Start with MVP Development
A Minimum Viable Product (MVP) helps you to test your startup idea, get feedback, and gain experience at no cost. Consequently, its development should be your next step after you test your idea with startups and make sure that it is worth an effort.
What benefits can MVP offer? It allows you to:
- test the startup idea on real users and in a real environment;
- get feedback from customers;
- understand the best ways to sell and promote the product;
- comprehend which of its features are most sought after;
- save time and money you could have wasted.
You can read more on this topic in our blog article — “Minimum Viable Product (MVP): what is it for and how to do it right?” So, if you need a reliable technology partner who could develop a product for you, we offer our custom MVP development service. Contact us, and let us discuss the details.
I hope this article is helpful to you. Use these tips and put them into practice to create cool products that people need!