Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

If you're an early stage startup that's trying to take your product from concept to shelf, then you might consider scoping out what's called a Minimum Viable Product or MVP for short. This term was first popularized by Eric Ries in his book "The Lean Startup."

When should you choose an MVP over a full product?

A full product has all the features you want, all the integrations you want, and all the designs you want. This is the finished version of your product, one that you can be truly proud of and is fully consumer-ready. However, a full product takes time and money. If you haven't fully validated your idea, this time and money can go toward building something that doesn't achieve product-market fit. In summary, you spent a lot of money building a product no one actually wants.

An MVP, on the other hand, can be built quickly and affordably and is a perfect tool to test your idea before investing the time and money it takes to launch a full product. If you launch an MVP and learn some key insights you didn't have before, you can iterate on the MVP to quickly launch a new version. If you keep repeating this process, you'll arrive at a concept of a product that truly fits your market, and you can now build the full product.

How do I write the scope for an MVP?

Some basic scope content for an MVP includes: a short project summary, preferred project tech stack (if you are technical), defined user roles and user flows, and modules/features/user stories of core features.

Again, the main intent for building an MVP is to prove a concept or a hypothesis. You don't want to worry about scaling. Your primary focus of building an MVP should be to build a product that's as simple and cost efficient as possible in order to prove the product's validity in the market.

We've been there. When you've spent many hours burning the midnight oil going through iteration after iteration of your product, it's hard to set aside certain features for later. You need to put in the time to decide what features are absolutely critical to proving the value of your product and only build those out for your MVP. The other features may add to the quality of the product, but if they aren't critical to proving your product's fit in the market then they can and should be built later.

If you are interested to learn how to draw up a general scope document like the above, or need help making those tough decisions on what features to include in your MVP, you can contact our live chat (or email [email protected] and set up a free consultation with an Aloa Outsourcing Strategist. They will be able help you draw up a basic scope document and teach you how to do it yourself along the way.

Table of Contents

Why Outsource

How to Vet Developers

How to scope a software project

How to establish your project structure

Our development process

How to manage your relationship with your outsourcing firm

How to manage expectations with your outsourcing firm

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