Startup building is a complex problem with a plenty of work to be done, but first of all it requires sufficient durable preparation. It is essential because the app validation step is the most responsible moment in its creation, due to the seriousness of its possible consequences. The main rule of a project lifecycle states that the earlier would be the mistake, the more losses it will bring. This fact makes mobile app idea validation even more important.
Do you have a brilliant idea but not sure if it worth realization? Do you wonder if it would be loved by millions of people? Want to add more convenience to your everyday routine work but still have no idea how many people struggle with the same problems? It all indicates that you should test your application idea. Let us introduce special tips for app validation, that surely will not go amiss.
Read also: First Things to Do If You Have an App Idea
1. Define your idea
No one and nothing will help you validate your app idea unless it would be clearly described and defined. Better start with writing a list of keywords, that get to mind first when you think about your app. Describe it more shortly and precisely at first, then go into details. Spare neither time nor trouble to do this job, because it gives you many advantages:
• it gives the opportunity to see how is it looks for onlookers
• helps to find some inconsistencies, if any
• saves the original concept, so that not to be mangled further
• gives better understanding of what benefits it gives users
• regulates and disciplines thoughts
Not bad, moreover, taking into account that everything it requires it is a pen and a piece of paper.
When you finally have a complete understanding of a future product, a full list of keywords and free time, get down to the next step.
2. Check your keywords in search engines
The rationale of this step is to see how many people looks for the solution provided by your app. Fortunately, today there is many tools, which make it possible to conduct such a research.
Google Keyword Planner, or AdWords
Undoubtedly, Google is the easiest site to start with. Look at the results, provided by search engines, and compare what you will find with your vision of the market. Perhaps your idea would be better modified. It is natural, no need to worry about. Next, use more specific tools as, for instance, Google AdWords. It is a powerful keyword search and traffic estimation tool, which makes it possible to estimate the number of people seeking for your solution.
One more interesting resource is Google Trends, providing a useful information of what is trendy right now and making it possible to explore trend dynamics with the flow of time. Being conveniently visualized, the data of trends helps to develop an understanding of what is interesting for people and how their interest evolves.
This data intelligence tool is especially useful in case you want to design the iOS app. It provides the functionality of previous two tools plus app store optimization devices. A powerful service, that can be very useful even during the further steps of the production and maintaining.
3. Face your competitors
Facing the competitors is one of the primary ways to determine a market demand for your app. To know every product in every app market is impossible, so make sure you are the first providing such a solution. If not, find it out what makes your app unique and necessary. Otherwise, you would not be able to sell your app well. After you find a set of your possible rivals, analyse their strengths and weaknesses. Try to find the reason of their prosperity and/or losses and bear in mind for improving your own idea.
4. Pitch your idea to friends
Congratulation! If you are reaching this far, it seems you have fancied something really new. This is the first time your idea will go out into the world. People as friends and relatives could give really useful outside perspective and genuinely tell you about the downsides. People usually love the feeling they participated in a project. Later they could help you in promoting your app, recommending it to their friends and relatives. Discuss the pain points with them to understand the market demand better and prepare answers to the questions that will probably arise at the next step.
5. Search for advice
Next, you are to ask the opinion of more knowing and skilled people. Where can one find them? Firstly, at meetups and hackathons. These are the places, where one could get tons of interesting information on whatever topic, so the time you spent on them will not be lost in vain for sure. Pitch your ideas to them, observe the reaction and make conclusions. Listen to their ideas, compare and criticize them constructively. Communication is the best way for promoting and evaluating ideas, which can lead you to acquiring useful contacts.
Read also: How Much Does It Cost to Build an MVP?
6. Pre-product: Ways to determine a market demand for your app
When all the previous steps are successfully finished and your idea still seems to be great and perspective, it is high time to start building the app. You have to do a great job, and this would probably take a great amount of time. So, how one can be still confident, that all this work would not be in vain and whether the people would like to use the app? To ensure that, there are a couple of useful techniques, described below.
Despite market research and analytics are efficient enough, the only proven way of how to validate your app idea is to put the product out and see if people will buy it. That is why prototyping is so essential. The main idea is to create a demo-version of your product first, which can be a presentation, a prototype, a landing page; in other words, we seek to create a minimum viable product (MVP).
At the age of social network there are many ways to interact with your possible users to get a response. One very efficient way is creating a landing page – a one page website promoting of your future app, its most innovative features and its advantages over the competitors. Next, share it through the networks to see how popular it will be in the Internet.
It is very important to track basic metrics of your page, thus, connect it to Google Analytics or similar resource. To track the responses on your landing page:
• provide the opportunity to sign up or subscribe to the news about your app release
• connect your site to SurveyMonkey or Google Forms
• ask users for email addresses in exchange of the latest information or discount
Also, ask them for their feedback to listen for their opinion. Again, people are fond of being involved in. Remember, that the success of the idea is not in the idea itself, but in the people that will use and love using the app.
The prototype should be a teaser, an interactive version of your landing page, where people can not only read about the possibilities it opens, but also try using them. Create something that addresses the problem you are trying to solve as quickly as possible and, thus, demonstrate the core value of your product.
Remember, that even if the MVP fails, it is far more better then spending a huge sum of money and time on an feeble product.
7. Search for funding
It is very cool that you want to create something interesting, but until you can prove that somebody will pay for it, it does not make any sense. You might be a developer yourself, but it does not mean you will be able to have all the work done alone. Capturing the attention of customers and hiring staff needs lots of money. Thus, it is a good practice to search for funders and investments beforehand. It is also an easy way of validating the idea. Just use such resources as Seed-DB or Y Combinator to see which projects do people want to invest in. There is also possible to exchange thoughts with other developers. If this step will get positive result, be sure that your idea is worth realization.
Why do startups fail? Probably, there are completely various reasons. Yet in most cases the reason is simple: the app does not solve any problem, it is useless for customers. That means they have any reason for downloading and using it, and no marketing, no designer insight will not be able to sell it. Unfortunately, both iOS and Android market stores today are full of apps that resulted in nothing. That is why following the steps is so essential to stay afloat in a present-day mobile development field.