The Client Guide to Software Development Agencies – Overview of Product Design
In the world of software development, many great ideas have been crippled by bad design. While it can be tempting to think that a great idea will sell itself, actually getting people to buy into it can be a more difficult journey than expected. All the advertising and marketing in the world won’t help if the process of using a service is impossible to navigate – and that’s where product design comes in. Well designed products become beautifully-crafted user experiences.
Product design can be thought of as a process that comes in several stages. The first stage is seeing an opportunity – and that can be anything from a service to provide to a marketplace in which to sell it. The key is finding a gap, or a way to do something better than it’s been done already. This can often be the hardest part of the process, but sometimes there’s a “eureka” moment and it all clicks into place. Great ideas are worth little without good implementation, however, and so the next step is to understand best how your idea works within the marketplace you wish to operate in.
Knowing your product well – what improvement it offers over the competition, who will want to use it or buy it, how it solves a particular issue that other products have ignored – is key to being able to successfully place your product within the market. These important questions can have a profound impact over the next stage in development, that of solving the challenges you have set yourself, which can have repercussions at all levels of your business.
At its most basic, this can mean making a seemingly small difference between your product and its competitors your major selling point, and the USP you base your whole business model around. While that approach can work with many specialized cases, good product design will help you identify the target market of consumers who will be drawn to that difference and find ways beyond that initial one to draw in new customers. This is the importance of knowing your market: as often as not, you’ll find customers who are drawn to your unique selling point have a set of tendencies or similarities you can also appeal to. Testing and research are critical here to gain knowledge. This knowledge can help you leverage design and effective UX to pitch your whole business in a particular and profitable direction.
Of course, it’s not always necessary to aim for just one particular segment of the market – it’s just often an easier way to get started. Your business plan will most likely be based around getting some sort of foot in the door, and a product designed to appeal to a particular segment can be the best way to do that. Well-planned products will take expansion into account as well though; continuously testing your products and solutions with actual customers is another major factor in product design, and will eventually give you a clear and agile product roadmap into possible future expansion directions. While the finance and logistics can often dictate the scope and reach of a project, product design will help you pick the right path, putting your resources to maximum benefit.