Before developing a smartphone app, it is integral to formulate a minimum viable product (MVP). The
MVP app development process should to be explored so that the viability of the idea can be properly tested.
Basic definition of MVP
A MVP is the basic version of the app which showcases the core functionality of the package. It allows the developers to test their initial assumptions that drove them to make the app. The MVP design process relies on continuous refinement of the app where the necessary changes are made to the app on the basis of user feedback.
Why build a MVP?
The primary objective of MVP is to push an operational product out to the users as soon as possible in order to minimize costs due to delays. It allows to establish contact with the end user and learn whether a change of direction is needed or not. MVP can also serve as a prototype to highlight the commercial viability of the product and, subsequently, attract investors.
List of steps for developing a MVP
The steps listed below develop the framework for the MVP formulation. It will help to identify steps which hold greater weight so that they can be given higher priority.
Step 1: Identification of your market and business needs
The MVP formulation process starts with market research and analysis of competitors. This will aid in calculating the chances of success upon entering the current market. Once this is done, long term goals such as target sales and share of the market are listed down. Meeting these goals will determine the success of your product.
Step 2: Mapping out user experience flow
The next step is to map out the user journey. This process is approached from the user's viewpoint. It starts with identifying the user so that their needs are understood. The intermediate steps performed through the interface and the end goal are defined to complete the story-telling of the process.
Step 3: Devise a pain/gain map
After the user experience flow is defined, the pain and gain map is created. It shows the current problems of the user and, when they are addressed, what the user stands to gain from it. This filters out the important features that need to be included in the MVP. Features with high potential are included in earlier versions while low potential features can be included in later versions.
Step 4: Selection of desired features
Once important features are identified, those features are selected that meet your product’s goals and are necessary for the MVP. The selected features can be used to write the opportunity statements which will define the features of the MVP. This information is compiled and a prioritization matrix is created in order to distribute features on the basis of impact and urgency.
After Your MVP
Once the MVP is released, the focus should shift towards feedback collection. This will help in determining what the product got right and what needs to be improved. The data collected will help in the development of upcoming versions and the whole process will be repeated.