- Seema Nair
Essential Tips for Startup Success
Understand your competition
Products are born out of an idea - an idea that tries to address a need or provide a solution. The recent years have cradled many more products and apps than we have witnessed before in the digital era. Likely, the solution you are trying to offer is already available in the market. Do not retreat - find ways to offer niche features or improve what already exists. Remember that competition forces us to do our best.
Study your user base
It is imperative to gain a full understanding of the demographics of the product you build. Products that cater to the masses have enormous potential to gain financial benefits. Simplifying a complicated process also can bring success, even when consumed by a smaller user base.
Prioritize what goes in first
Sometimes, we lose focus and try to pack in a lot more features than what is essential at launch. It can overwhelm product development and also result in time loss and inflated costs.
Make a note of all the features you have in mind. Then, create a product roadmap to gain a broader perspective of what goes in when. Always prioritize the critical features and solutions that aid customer retention. Roll out incremental features as product updates or during subsequent releases.
Choose the right tech stack
The right technical foundation is vital for scalability, and third-party tool integration as the product evolves.
Microservice-based architecture is advisable since it gives the flexibility to build and deploy features independently, thereby reducing the impact on other components.
Take the help of technical architects and engineers who can recommend an optimal combination of client/server architecture.
Emphasize on quality
Employ QA proactively rather than as a reactive measure to curtail bugs once they surface. It is vital to understand that QA requires discipline. By engaging a dedicated QA team, make sure that testing is always on-going.
Strive the right balance between manual and automated tests. Instead of automating all tests, focus on the critical tests or the tests executed frequently. Manual testing efforts can focus on tests that require deep thinking and intelligence.
Encourage all stakeholders to embrace quality. Do not forget that quality is everyone's responsibility.
Take advantage of feedback
Customer feedback can help you gauge the success and acceptance of a product and its features. Use it constructively to pave ways for product enhancements and improvements. Put a system in place to record feedback gained from the marketplace, real users, trial users. Carefully analyze the feedback, prioritize them, and then take the necessary steps to implement them.
Ensure confidentiality and privacy
Be prepared to go the extra mile to ensure customer privacy and secrecy of intellectual property. Make use of reliable tools for documentation, communication, and data storage even if it comes at a higher cost.
Ensure that all stakeholders, service providers, and partners understand the significance of data sensitivity. Conduct sessions to educate them and make them aware of the consequences.
Implement checklists and audit process for regular review to plug leakage.