custom software developmentDigital TransformationMinimum Viable Productmvpstartup advice

Top Successful Businesses That Started With MVP Development

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The last year was tough because of the pandemics and economic recession. Although it seems too risky to start something new now, enter the target market or push business growth, there are companies that did it a while ago and turned into business giants.

By now you may be wondering what companies we are referring to and how they become successful. Well, the secret of the success of many companies is in MVP development.

So in this post, we would like to share with you some success stories of companies that started their business path with MVP. We’ll point out what benefits this approach offers and pitfalls you may face. And, without further ado, let’s delve into this topic together.

The role of minimum viable product in starting a business 

It is hard to underestimate the importance of MVP development. Some people think that it is only a lean startup methodology. However, minimum viable products development can be of use to businesses of all sizes, prominent startups with significant funding and even huge enterprises that already use a lot of technologies. Why is that so? Thanks to MVP, you can test business hypotheses and concept before putting significant investments into the full cycle development.

To begin with, let’s define what MVP means and what it can help you with. MVP is a minimum viable product: it is a basic software version that contains only key functionality that are enough to meet major user requirements.

MVP concept is perfect for those companies that need to check if their software and business idea will work for them, see how the employees can interact with the software and whether it is practical enough.

goals of MVP development

Benefits of MVP development

Building MVP first is a great approach because it helps to save you a lot of time, money, and nerves. It allows you to collect feedback from real users so you can consider some changes, improvements, and additional features. And all these will be done fast and within a reasonable budget. Apart from speed and cost efficiency, the MVP development offers a number of advantages:

advantages of MVP development

Faster time-to-market
thanks to MVP development services, you can release a solution faster, start building your solid user base, and gain a competitive advantage on the market. Faster time-to-market is great for businesses as they can spend less time developing and integrating new digital tools, and start testing them on real users early on.

Real users feedback
the only way to discover if your project is a perfect market fit and add what it’s still missing is by releasing an MVP version of your product. Once you’ve received customer feedback, you can decide what path to take and what to change in your solution to achieve your business goals. And only after that can you invest your time and money in building the full version of your solution.

Significant costs reduction
 it’s not a secret that the development of any solution is costly, and often the initial budget is exceeded during the development process. So, as a result, a startupper or a company spends all resources on a new product that may require further improvements and additional costs. To avoid this situation, you can consider minimum viable product development, see how it goes and what investment you’ll need in the future. High-quality MVP can help startups attract more investors and stay cost effective. And businesses can prioritize their future development investments and required MVP functionality accordingly.

Great risk mitigation
development and risks come hand in hand. However, with the right MVP approach most of the risks can be eliminated. First of all, you will get a chance to test your MVP development company and see if they are professional enough. Secondly, you will either prove or dissolve your hypothesis and assumptions about the end-users of your new product (and get a chance to change the whole project concept without significant budget or time loss).

In any case, MVP is definitely a win-win option. Just check out the video below to understand all its advantages.

 When to choose MVP development

Apart from the benefits mentioned above, a minimum viable product is a good option if you need to:

  • Perform idea validation;
  • Make sure that the technology stack is suitable;
  • Select the correct architecture pattern;
  • Define your competitive advantage and USP; 
  • Eliminate disruptions to your business;
  • Focus on solution quality and security;
  • Get a solution corresponding to all fresh market trends;
  • Grow your solution step by step. 

MVP became an incredible starting point for numerous businesses, and lots of such projects that we’ve developed turned into full functionality solutions with time. MVP is not a “demo” version of a project but rather its backbone.

So if you still have any doubts, you are welcome to consult with us and discuss your perspectives and how MVP can be of use to your business.

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Top 3 worldwide companies that started with MVP development

Now when you know what benefits MVP can offer, you may be interested in companies that actually took advantage of those benefits. We completed one interesting research and created a list of top companies that invested in MVP before developing a full version of their product. And now they own giant corporations worth millions.

Facebook

Facebook is the service that we use on a daily basis. It’s a giant in the world of social media, and few people know that its history began with an MVP. Yes, Facebook started as a minimum viable product in 2004.

By 2021 Facebook became one of the most profitable companies in the world. The first MVP name of Facebook was “Thefacebook,” and here is how the main page looked like:

Facebook MVP

Of course, the idea of such social networks was not new and had many competitors. And yet Facebook had enough innovativeness and simplicity that helped it win the hearts of millions of users worldwide.

Facebook started with development of web app and later its founder invested in mobile app development, which turned out to be a great strategy.

It was a great decision to build an MVP since it helped introduce Facebook to people and see how they interact with it, its functionality and what it actually lacks. Thanks to the high level of the target audience engagement, Facebook became the most convenient social website ever and achieved a huge success.

Airbnb

Who hasn’t booked an apartment while traveling using a well-known service called Airbnb? It’s the most user-friendly solution that was launched in 2008. The idea behind this solution was to help both property owners and travelers. The first ones should get a chance to earn additional income, and the second ones should be able to find a place to stay effortlessly.

The Airbnb founders are Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia, and their massive project started with an MVP! And this was not the greatest MVP you could imagine. The website was pretty simple, minimalistic, and with limited functionality. So basically, users can post pictures of the apartments, and wait for someone with a renting proposal.

Airbnb MVP

The Airbnb founders had several volunteers who tested the website and gave their instant feedback. So this was a classic MVP scenario – basic project, successful product launch, testing users and then everything turned into a huge business that we know today.

Uber 

The story of Uber began when Garrett Camp and Travis Kalanick were unable to find a ride and decided that their country needed better services. They shaped their idea of a new transportation company, developed an MVP and released it in 2009.

It took a long time to get the first order in that solution, and yet now Uber is one of the most popular services for finding a ride. The first MVP version of Uber was a simple iOS application. Just take a look at it:

Uber MVP

Several drivers offered their services, and then the founders of Uber collected reviews and feedback on the Uber page in the App Store and decided on what to add next. That’s exactly how they came up with the idea to add an in-app payment option and made it Uber’s competitive advantage.

And that happened thanks to MVP and end user suggestions. So we guess it is not really necessary to emphasize the importance of MVP development once again, as the examples make it pretty obvious.

Whatever you are building – web solutions or mobile apps, cost effective MVP can help you discover your market potential instantly. You will also get a chance to attract potential customers faster and adapt your project to meet their crucial needs.

Good to know
Uber became a big deal in the business world and now there is even a phenomenon called the Uber economy. Uber-like applications invade the market. Wondering what Uber model can be good for? Then read or set of blog posts.

Apart from Facebook, Uber, and Airbnb, there are several other companies that benefited from MVP, and you definitely heard about them or used their services very often:

  • Twitter;
  • Instagram; 
  • Dropbox;
  • Groupon;
  • Zappos;
  • Spotify and many more.

As you can see, MVP can become a great option for different businesses. And the examples we’ve mentioned are not the only ones. There are way more companies that succeeded because they’ve invested in MVP first.

But are there any cases of failure? What can happen if you skip the minimum viable product development? Well, we have an example of an MVP-less failure as well. Have you ever heard of a platform called Singulution? It was meant to be a huge success as its initial business objectives were to become a top-notch digital helper for sales and business management.

The owner of this startup invested $30,000 in the development of Singulution from scratch…but unfortunately all money was wasted. The startup owner claimed, he failed to engage customers and ask for their honest opinion. Once the solution was released, it was too late to change it and adjust to market needs.

We presume that if the startup owner resorted to MVP, the destiny of Singulution on the market could have been different. So, unfortunately, the project was outrun by competitors and then purchased by another company.

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Where should you start with MVP development process? 

Perhaps you got inspired by the great examples we’ve provided and now you are seriously considering the MVP development for your project. So chances are, you feel a little bit lost and have too many questions in your head.

Where should I start? What basic features should I select? Are there any MVP models I need to explore? What is the minimum viable product development cycle? Keep calm, and do not storm your web browser, as the answers are coming up.

Let’s start with the main point, which is selecting the right MVP model. Why are we starting with it? Because the model is connected to the selection of your development team. So basically there are three main models you can consider.

In-house MVP development

This approach implies that you gather a team of developers that develop, test, release and maintain your MVP. This option is quite costly and time-consuming because you need to pay for office space, salaries to your developers, and of course, before that even happens, you need to complete numerous job interviews and go through the hiring process.

Partial MVP outsourcing

You may already have an in-house team of developers who lack certain expertise or skills to complete MVP development. So your option may be to expand your team and outsource the development of certain project features to your tech partner (another team of dedicated developers). This option is less costly and still guarantees great performance and predictable outcome.

Full MVP development outsourcing

This option can be the best for numerous businesses because you can stay involved in your working processes while the outsourcing team will do all of the technical work for you. You fully delegate the MVP development to the team of your choice and get results faster without compromising quality.

Outsourcing teams like ours offer great communication level and deep involvement in the necessary business niches. The delivery concerns will not bother you, and the risk management is also on us.

Select the key features wisely 

Once you’ve selected a suitable MVP development model, it is time to think about features prioritization. Before you actually proceed with the development, you need to understand what the first release of your MVP should offer to the future users to keep them hooked and interested in using that solution further.

Speaking about feature prioritization, it is necessary to mention that there are four main feature combinations you need to consider. Here they are:

  1. Study your competition and select for your MVP the best features that are present in other similar solutions. Of course, you can spice them up with something innovative that only your solution will have.
  2. After you finish your research, select only several interesting existing features and add something innovative from your side.
  3. Add only your unique features to the MVP and don’t use any of the options popular in other similar products.
  4. Add only selectively the most popular features of existing similar solutions to your MVP and try to stand out by making the quality of those features outstanding.

Here at our development company, we worked on MVP app development, including different combinations of core features. And we can say for sure that while a feature set itself means a lot, what defines its destiny is a good UX/UI design and  high-quality code. And that’s exactly what we always provide.

Our team offers high quality software development services and holistic market research. We also help businesses and tech startups to explore their target market, select right marketing strategy, and perform faster market entry. Here is the tech stack we work with:

our tech stack

Apart from these major technologies we can implement in you project the following:

  • Powerful data analytics to get all kinds of valuable insights;
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning to maximize innovation;
  • Gamification options to please every end user;
  • AR,VR, Big Data and IoT-powered options to spice up an entire project.

Explore the MVP development lifecycle 

Like any other solution, MVP development has its lifecycle that you should follow strictly to achieve the best possible outcome. Here at our company, MVP software development includes the following key stages:

MVP development flow

Shaping your idea
it usually goes hand in hand with the Discovery phase. This is a market research that helps to discover all of the unknowns of your project, define the most suitable tech stack and feature set. Basically you and Business Analyst explore the solutions of your competitors and decide what options are a must-have for your MVP and what USP it will have. Of course, the project scope will grow with time thanks to iterative development that will be more cost efficient than trying to incorporate all the features at once.

Design and prototyping
during this stage the designers create a prototype of your future application, work on the overall design concept and provide you with several logos, mockups and other design deliverables. So that you can suggest changes or approve the design and proceed to the MVP development.

MVP product development and testing
during this stage, our development specialists write code and perform all integrations, while quality assurance engineers complete all kinds of quality checks (including manual and automated testing of your product performance).

MVP release
your solution is integrated with other business systems or uploaded to necessary stores so that the target audience can get easy access to it and leave honest user feedback about your MVP. We always guarantee successful product launch and help with all necessary steps.

Collecting feedback
after MVP release you can see how the users interact with it and what they like or now. After that you can incorporate new features, improve design elements and user interface, implement some new technologies into your MVP and complete its further development.

We would highly recommend you to choose a development partner that has a cohesive team full of specialists such as business analyst, project manager, DevOps, QA engineer, front and back-end coders, designers. All those specialists can ensure iterative development process and timely release of developed MVP.

More information
If you are interested in more details about MVP product development and its possible alternatives, we’d recommend you read this blog post dedicated to this topic.

Choose the right development partner

Before you hire any development company, make sure that it is experienced enough in MVP development and can guide you through all processes seamlessly. Domain expertise as well as agile development approach also mean a lot. The team of your choice should be skilled in a wide variety of technologies.

How our MVP development company does it

Let’s take our team as an example. Having been 10 years in business, GBKSOFT proved itself a perfect MVP development company for businesses and large startups. We develop and deliver solutions for the following business niches:

  • automotive and logistics,
  • real estate,
  • healthcare,
  • HR and recruitment,
  • entertainment,
  • finance and banking,
  • construction,
  • manufacture,
  • HoReCa.

The solid experience and numerous projects we’ve delivered allow us to complete MVP software development without exceeding your budget. We also faced enough development difficulties in our professional way that helps us now to avoid numerous development pitfalls and save your time and nerves.

Our software development company offers established companies and startups the following:

  • Broad domain and technology expertise;
  • Expert consultation and business analysis;
  • Client-focused approach and skilled full stack team;
  • MVP development services according to Agile practices;
  • Writing of all technical documentation;
  • MVP development services and QA services;
  • Advanced project management and high communication level;
  • Timely deliveries, help with software integration, and post-delivery maintenance.

Our team is cohesive and has all necessary specialists starting with designers and software engineers, and ending with business analyst and project manager. All these people will help you to build an MVP from scratch in no time.

We can not only provide high-quality MVP development services but also make sure that your basic version of the project develops further and gets better and even more competitive with each new release. With our team, your minimum viable product development will be a truly positive experience.

As to the cooperation models, you can hire us as a dedicated team, benefit from our team extension services or software development outsourcing. We offer web development services, mobile app development, and full cycle project development.

You can explore such platforms as Goodfirms and Clutch, then select several custom software development companies and go through their websites. Try to discover what their expertise is, how many years the team has been on the market, what solutions they deliver and for what industries. And don’t forget about the real client reviews.
We recommend all our clients complete the Discovery stage to validate initial product idea, specify your business needs and collect as much information about the project as possible. It is very important to know what problem you are attempting to solve with the MVP project, in what way, how the potential customers will interact with your MVP, and so on.
Everything depends on the project and its complexity. On average, the development of the final product takes 4-6 months so MVP may take a half of this time. Also, making MVP for business management apps may take a bit longer because an integration with other working solutions may be required.

To wrap it up

MVP development services are a great choice not only for startups that are rushing to enter the market, but also for big businesses and enterprises that consider integration of new solutions and technologies.

Building an MVP is the best way to check how the new solution will complement your existing ecosystem, what practical use it will offer and what can be changed to make it a perfect fit for your employees and company.

When a great deal of money and your smart business environment are at stake, there is no need to take additional risks. By choosing MVP, you minimize costs, speed up the development process, and get a predicted outcome.

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