MVP App Development for Startups: What, Why, When, and How

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Do you want to learn everything about MVP app development for your startup quickly and easily? This is your go-to- guide. This comprehensive guide to MVP app development covers everything, from what, why, when to how of MVP app development for startups.

If you are ready to dive into the world of startup mobile app development, you should know about the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) for an app. Why? The MVP version of the app not only validates your idea for mobile apps but also gives the right direction towards what app features to include to accomplish the desired goals.

The most common question startups often ask apps development companies is whether or not MVP app development is right for them. To answer your question — we would like to mention that big giants, including Amazon, Facebook, and Uber started as a minimum viable product. So it’s evident that MVP in mobile app development is lucrative for startups.

So without wasting much time, let’s begin with the what, why, when, and how of MVP for the app. Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of MVP development.

What Is a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)?

As the name implies, MVP is a minimum form of your product tested on the market. The main objective of MVP app development is to see how target users react and experience your product’s core functionality. The concept of MVP originated in the startup world and is now used by companies of all shapes and sizes to test products.

In layman’s terms, MVP is a minimal version of a product, helping innovators get product validation from target customers and with the least effort. All in all, MVP is a basic, launchable version of the product that supports minimal (yet crucial) features.

Types of MVP:

  • Low-fidelity MVP – Embraces simple development with basic results. The main goal of these types of MVP is to understand the customer’s problem and identify a solution. Audience-building MVP is the main type of MVP that comes under low-fidelity MVP.
  • High-fidelity MVP – Known for demanding development with profound results. The main objective of these types of MVP is to understand whether or not the users are ready to pay for the solution. Single-feature MVP, pre-order MVP, concierge MVP, and Wizard of Oz MVP come under high-fidelity MVP.

A Few Examples of Popular Apps with Great MVP Success:

  • Amazon
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Uber
  • Airbnb
  • Spotify
  • Buffer
  • Dropbox

Why Should Startups Create MVP Apps in the First Place?

See, startups always have a budget constraint. Having said that, the primary motive of MVP is to develop a working product that offers immediate value, quickly along with minimizing costs. Start with a basic working model, and then its basic product with limited features helps you understand more about your end-users and the market.

MVP is a strategic plan, which allows you to understand the potentiality of your idea.

Why should startups invest in the MVP version of the app? Well, because it is a pillar of full application, helping you improve UX and engagement, evaluates performance, and more.

Let’s explore the benefits of MVP app development for startups.

  • Focus on Core Functionalities – MVP for apps helps you focus on the app’s core functionalities. It allows you to test your app concept with minimum cost and time. Rather than letting you add all the functionalities, MVP enables you to add basic (yet crucial) functionalities.
  • Clarity of Vision – MVP in mobile app development gives you clarity of vision. It helps you specify the core features and customer value of the app and prepare your vision around it. This vision helps you stay on track and make better decisions in the long term.
  • Better Understanding of Users’ Needs – Minimum viable product for an app lets you gather feedback from early adopters that is much more valuable in helping you understand your customers’ needs. This way, you will understand what features and improvements you need to make in your app going forward.
  • Evaluate App’s Performance – The MVP version of the app can be a handy tool for evaluating and rating the performance of the app. You can actually check whether or not you are moving in the right direction and using cutting-edge technologies while creating an app.
  • Flexibility and Constant Updates – Flexibility and constant updates are other significant advantages of MVP app development. The MVP for apps approach creates space for updates and new features that customers ask for. Hence, your app will always keep on evolving tremendously.
  • Cost-Efficient Development – MVP in mobile app development is cost-efficient because it allows you to launch your app with basic yet essential features. Therefore, the minimum viable product for an app costs you less and avoids the risk of uncertainty in the initial stage.
  • Quicker Release – It’s obvious that if you develop an app with just core functionality, it speeds up the release time. An MVP version of the app approach also helps you release the good app concept before anyone else. Hence, giving you a competitive edge over others.

7 Crucial Factors to Keep in Mind While Building MVP App

Keep It Simple

All the big giants, including Amazon, Instagram, Facebook, Airbnb, and others followed the “keeping it simple” approach to succeed. Having said that, to stay ahead in the game, just start simple and then move ahead. Remember, simple doesn’t have to be unfinished; it just has to be basic yet enticing enough to attract the users.

Identify Your Success Criteria

Have some visioned success goal in mind. You must know why you begin before you even begin. When you prepare a goal, aim for prepping a long-term goal and not just for the MVP. Ask yourself crucial questions like why am I making this MVP version of the app? What do I want to accomplish from the MVP for the app? And so on. Having success criteria is essential to stay competitive.

Focus on User Experience

In the context of MVP in mobile app development, you need to keep your users first and focus on improving the overall experience. It doesn’t matter if you created the most beautiful interface; users aren’t likely to engage with your product if the app has zero usability. So focus on that part too.

Determine Users’ End Goal

Before you begin, you need to determine what is the goal of your end-user. For example, if you’re making a food ordering/delivering app, you need to ensure the basic and crucial expectations of your users from that app. Accordingly, you need to map the user journey from A to Z to understand how the interaction will flow.

Answer All the Pain Points

Every app (that was, is, and will be) built out there almost has the same objective. It’s all about finding new ways to solve people’s pain points. No? And if you want to make a stand-out app, you need to answer all the pain points of your users too. This will help you shape your minimum viable product for an app in the right direction.

Prioritize the Right Features

MVP is not the final product you’re bringing to the market. You actually can’t add everything when it comes to MVP app development. Therefore, you need to prioritize the basic (and essential) features you want to go ahead with to make your MVP app feature-rich.

Track Metrics

To understand what you need to do with your MVP app, what improvements you need to make going further, and what features you need to incorporate to draw more customers’ attention, you need to track your MVP version of the app regularly. Based on the users’ feedback, make improvements and ensure the optimum user experience.

9 Quick and Easy Steps to Follow for Successful MVP App Development

Identify and Understand the Business and Market Needs

This is the very first (and the most crucial) step of all. You can’t begin developing your MVP app without determining and understanding business and market needs. You need to identify — what’s the need for your app in the market? What difference will it make? What kind of gap will it fill? Ask yourself — will your app solve an existing problem? And then analyze competitors to discover how to make the app stand out amid today’s competition.

Spot the Opportunities

Once you understand the market needs and analyze your competitors, the next step is to find a way to fill in the gap. Understand what your potential users need and want, and create a user persona. This way, you will find a lot of information regarding how to fill the gap. Have a look at your competitors’ offerings. Spot the opportunities you come across and grab them, or it’s better to snatch them for better results.

Ideate on Value Addition

Focus on value addition. Ask yourself what value does your app offer to its users, how can it benefit them, why they should download that app, and so on. These questions can help you understand what things you will be needing to make your app unique from others. Plus, it will also help you to better express your app idea.

Map Out User Journey

Again, it should be all about your users. It’s critical to design your mobile app with your users in mind. The best thing to ensure that your users will have a good experience with the first interaction of your app is by mapping out user journeys. This will help you see your app from the users’ perspective and allow you to add the features and functionalities accordingly. The user-first approach is always the lucrative approach.

Create a Pain and Gain Map

Once you’re done with mapping out the user journey, the very next step should be creating a pain and gain map for each action. What does it do? A pain and gain map allows you to identify all the pain points users are facing, gaining the user achievers when each is addressed well. Sounds interesting? This tactic surely helps you determine where you have the greatest potential to add value in your application for desired outcomes.

Decide What Features to Incorporate

Once everything is in place, you should prioritize what features you want to incorporate into your app. Separate the must-have features from the nice-to-have ones. Dive deeper and pick the features that can easily make you stand out from your competitors. Knowing what features to add is one crucial step in minimum viable product for an app process. Therefore, it needs to be done wisely.

Validate and Test Your MVP App

It’s crucial to validate your MVP app before it goes public. Most of the time, the easiest way is to ask friends and families. But that’s not the most accurate way because it can be partial. Therefore, it’s always advisable to hire an experienced app testing company that can validate and test your MVP version of the app meticulously. Once your MVP app goes live, ensure to collect feedback from early adopters.

Launch MVP App

You have done everything from identifying business and market needs to validating and testing your MVP for the app. Now it’s time to launch your MVP app. Remember that an MVP is not lower quality than a final product. It will still fulfill your users’ needs. So make sure that your MVP app is easy to use, engaging, and valuable for your potential users.

Don’t Stop Improving

When you launch your MVP app, that doesn’t mean your work is done; you can now sit back and relax. No, you need to keep improving your MVP app based on your users’ feedback. Also, the best thing about MVP in mobile app development is, it gives you enough room for improvement; that’s the whole point of MVP app development. So once your MVP app hits the market, collect as many reviews as you can and make changes accordingly in your app.

How Much Does MVP App Development Cost (On Average)?

So much does it actually cost to build an MVP mobile app in today’s age? Well, there’s no one-size-fits-all amount that can go perfectly well with all types of app’s niche, size, and type. However, MVP is only a fraction of what a complete app costs.

The cost of developing an MVP depends on various factors, including choice of developer, design of the product, features, choice of technology, and more.

Having said that, let’s have a look at the options you have for building an MVP app.

  • Hire Freelancers – This can be a quick, inexpensive, and easy way to start your MVP project. It can cost you somewhere from $5,000 to $15,000, depending on your needs and wants. However, when anything goes wrong, they just leave without taking responsibility. And that’s the worst part of hiring a freelancer.
  • Hire a Well-Reputed Company – Well, this can be a bit expensive, but it’s certainly transparent. Your hired development team takes full responsibility for your MVP project and ensures to deliver quality work. It can cost you from $15,000 to $30,000, depending on your app requirements.

In Conclusion

Building an MVP version of your app is worth it. It lets you create a simple version of your app and leaves a lot of scope for future improvement. We hope this comprehensive guide to MVP app development helped you understand everything you needed to learn about MVP app development before setting your foot into it.

An MVP app can save a lot of time, effort, and money; and help you hit the market quickly and easily. So are you ready to embark on your first MVP app development journey? Great. Think from the user’s mind, dive into their psyche, and you’re good to go.

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