4 Strategies For Product Validation
You’ve conducted your research and you know who you’re creating your app for, but how do you know what your target audience wants? How do you know if you’re building the right product for the right people? Product validation, specifically for app development, is an essential step in order to avoid common problems such as faulty, incomplete, or undesired products.
Before launching an app, market demand, customer pain points and the product itself need to be validated. Without this step, the product launch will most likely fail. These 4 strategies will help you avoid making this mistake and ensure that your product is validated properly before launching it into the market.
1. Reviewing Against Formal Acceptance Criteria
The user’s wants, needs, and desires must guide the entire design process. The user guidelines will be the basis in which a successful app is built. If the product doesn’t match up to the user guidelines and doesn’t offer a critical feature, then it’s quickly dismissed in the market. If your app is missing an important feature that your competitor has, then you’ll lose your customers. Reviewing the product against formal acceptance criteria will avoid this and help meet the standards in which the user will purchase the product. A formal acceptance criterion can be established based on user research, platform guidelines, and past experience.
2. A User Acceptance Test
A user acceptance test is another strategy that will help validate your product before it’s built. This validation test involves an imitation product of either an MVP, prototype, or mockup and putting it through an alpha or beta user test. The user will then provide feedback during this iterative process in which problems or kinks can be ironed out early on during the development phase.
3. Focus Groups
Focus groups are another common strategy for product validation because they are designed to analyze the user’s behavior as they use the app. With this strategy, it’s best to gather a cross-selection sample of users that match your target audience. The mockup or prototype is then released to the focus group in order to examine their behaviors as they use the app. If the respondents misuse or don’t understand the app, it’ll need to be sent back to the design phase.
4. Releasing The App Into The Market
Testing your app by releasing it into the market is highly effective and arguably the most realistic test of product validation. This is because you’re actually testing your product in the market. With this strategy, you conduct your research, create the app, and launch the product into the market to gather user feedback. User reviews and customer feedback are common measurables to gauge how successful your app is performing. This strategy, however, requires careful consideration with the timeline in which the app is released into the market. Releasing the product too early is high-risk because your product may be unfinished and your brand could be tarnished very quickly. This is true particularly if the competition is heavy and there are better products on the market. On the other hand, if you wait too long, you’re investing a lot of money in a product that might not succeed in the market. You need to release your app at the right time and continuously modify it to meet the needs of your users.
These 4 strategies will help you redefine your idea and understand your users in greater detail. There are many reasons why apps fail in the market such as competition, poor market research, a faulty product, and so on. Putting your app through one or some of these validation tests will illustrate precisely how your product will perform in the market and increase the download rate and user retention.