Many companies let the excitement of launching a digital product cloud their better judgement, surpassing the research needed to thoroughly scope out the need and market.
This leads to creating a product that doesn’t provide its users value and a solution to their pain points, ultimately wasting time, money and other resources in the process.
Today we’re going to go over the most common errors companies make when creating a digital product.
They develop a product that they think they need
Many companies will see a digital product that competitors have and automatically assume that they need to develop it as well, without assessing their own situation.
CRPs, CRMs and e-commerce products often fall into this line of thinking as they try to “keep up with the Jones.”
To all of you, we recommend that you take a step back and assess WHY you need the product. What are you going to fix for your users by launching it? Just because the competition has it doesn’t mean that your situation is similar to theirs.
Also, before jumping on the bandwagon, go forth and use the tools you’re thinking about creating to see if they’ll be of value. This way, you’ll see firsthand if it’s worth building or buying a license for.
They assume the client has a necessity
Likewise, companies assume their end users have a necessity for the product when they really don’t.
As a company, if you don’t thoroughly investigate your users’ real pain points, you might be solving an issue that isn’t really an issue.
Take Facebook email for example. There was a time when Facebook assumed their users needed an email service built into the social media platform. The end result? No one used it, and Facebook ended up losing time and money in the process.
Another good example here is with Google Plus. Many have heard about it, but a lot never really understood the purpose of it. So, in this way, Google fell into the same trap as Facebook, investing a lot of time, money and resources into a tool and product that end users really didn’t care about.
In short, companies assume creating a digital product is the solution without actually validating that’s what their users need.
They develop a product that solves an issue but isn’t validated during development
This leads to companies creating a product where the user doesn’t feel like said product solves their issues.
Let’s use a real-life example here. Imagine you want a house built, and you hire out a construction company. However, they never asked you for specifications throughout the building process. By the time the house is done, it’ll check all of your boxes, but would you live in it? The answer is probably no.
This is the reality of software. Unless you have a process and methodology defined throughout the development cycle, it’s hard to have a quality end product.
You need to start validating during the development cycle. Going back to the house example, if the construction company only builds the first floor and then gets feedback, they can more efficiently and effectively build the rest.
Also, this same issue often occurs within the banking sector. They see they have an issue, but they’re so worried about time to market that they create digital products without checking with clients to see if the product will actually solve their problems. They just validate at the end when the product is completed.
Again, you need to always be validating as you go throughout the development cycle.