With an ever-increasing number of aspiring entrepreneurs, there are millions of ideas floating around in the universe. However, conceptualizing an idea is not a straightforward task and 90% of startups fail in their efforts. Besides, the idea a startup has may not be truly unique or innovative and may turn out to be a mismatch to what the customers really want.
So, how do you as a startup plan to survive the competitive business environment? How can you be sure that the market conditions remain ideal for your product launch?
A good approach is to conduct basic market research and then use any of the two methods: MVP (Minimum Viable Product) and EVP (Exceptional Viable Product) to ensure that the market conditions remain the same at the time of launch.
Let’s begin with a basic introduction of MVP and EVP.
MVP (Minimum Viable Product): Designed by Eric Rensin, MVP is the smallest possible operational version of the product launched to tap customers’ initial reactions. This assists in getting valuable customer feedback and insights, based on which, startups perform iterations on the designed product.
This implies that the startup will either upgrade their MVP with more features and launch it in the market, or roll it back to a previous version to launch it again with a different set of features. The process is repeated until the end product hits the market.
Let’s now get to know more about EVP.
EVP (Exceptional Viable Product): As the name implies, EVP is an exceptional or the finest version of the product. Here, the near complete product, with rich features and elements, is launched into the market. Before it is officially launched, the designed product undergoes a number of iterations based on the feedback from a set of selective loyal customers.
The product goes to the market after rigorous trials, tests, and enhancements to create the best first impression in the market. This certainly looks like a better option than coming into the market with a crude version of the product, but the question is, how feasible is this approach for a startup?
Let’s now try to compare the two approaches and figure out the best approach for a startup.
MVP vs EVP: Which Way to Go?
As we observed, the two approaches take two entirely different paths towards the product launch. Let’s try to compare both in terms of certain parameters that can help startups decide the approach they should opt for.
Market Entry: Startups usually have a limited budget and designing a minimal version of the product with basic features can be a good idea. Once the idea is approved by the customers, coming out with additional features and working on the same makes sense. However, this is feasible if the product is unique and the competition in the market is quite low.
In a highly competitive market, EVP is going to fare well. In such a scenario, it isn’t possible to enter the market in a slow and gradual manner. EVP will ensure that you make a wonderful first impression on your customers and can successfully survive the competition.
Budget: Budget is definitely a constraint for most of the startups. MVP can help these startups to get their products tested in the real market before a lot of money and time has been invested. The top two reasons for the failure of a startup are no market need and running out of cash. So, if your business is vulnerable to one of these crucial missteps, you’ll get to know beforehand.
EVP, on the other hand, can prove disastrous if there is no demand for the product in the market. You’ll end up putting in a lot of time and cash into a bust deal. However, if you have no budgetary restraints and have done your market research well, and are simply looking to enhance market visibility of your product, EVP can be a blessing.
Timeframe: With MVP, there’s no need to spend expensive development time on many features. Moreover, it helps to keep you enthusiastic about your product as you can launch a prototype soon enough. Quick user feedback further helps you improve upon your original idea, thus enhancing the chances of success of your product and reducing the risk of getting smashed by a similar product being launched at the same time.
EVP can, however, take a long time before getting into the market, and by that time, your product may have a competitor with better features, and there’s a possibility that your product may become completely obsolete by something innovative. Also, in the long term, you may even lose the fire for your idea. However, if you’ve long-term goals or wish to launch a product that’s going to be truly useful in the near future, EVP can be the best way forward.
Now, based on the above comparison and your own analysis, you can take a decision that fits your specific needs and requirements. If you’re not sure how to go about your mobile app idea, get in touch with professional mobile app development services.
In a nutshell, choosing EVP as your MVP isn’t cutting in will not help you. Rather, start with making sure your product has a market demand and solves a meaningful problem for other people. Begin with MVP as a base, develop a basic version of the product, and talk to the customers. Make quick adjustments as per customer feedback to keep veering off course. This ensures lean development without large-scale planning or overproduction and saves you from treading too far for too long in the wrong direction. Buffer, Airbnb and Dropbox are popular examples of the MVP approach, so think big but start small unless you’re planning for a long-term, or are in a highly competitive market with no budgetary constraints.
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