How to Quickly Validate Your Startup Idea with an MVP?

Sure thing, MVP development is a serious topic and it is impossible to cover every aspect in a short post. Let me show you what my son taught me these days: Validating your idea and building an MVP is as simple as connecting Lego pieces. Yes, you read it right.

Just a quick comment about my son’s Lego idea. He said to me: ‘Dad, look at my new Lego. This is a simple warrior robot. But then I asked myself, who needs a simple robot? I checked with my friends and found that they also had the same warrior robots, so I wanted to create a one-of-a-kind robot with some cool features and skills. I tested my robot idea on mom and cousin, they liked it. Why don’t you adults make products while I play with my Legos? I wish I’d been asked about my backpack, it doesn’t have room for my new toys.

So, to cut a long story short, MVP development is not that complicated, it can be broken down into 5 simple steps. Let’s ‘open the box’ and see what’s inside:

#1 Define the problem your product solves

Every product we use on a daily basis fills a certain gap in our needs and, more importantly, it solves a certain problem. That’s why the first thing you really should do is ask yourself these 3 simple questions:

  1. Who will need this potential service or product?
  2. How can it help solve the problem?
  3. What exact problems or issues does your service or product shed light on?

Keep your answers short and simple, just the basics and basics.

#2 Look around for some research

Certainly, there are many services and products on the market that compete with your idea. But the trick is to dig deep and investigate, try competing products and services, research the market and see where you can improve or what you lack.

The good thing is that you do not need to spend too much of your precious time on this particular step. There are some great research tools that help you collect various information from the websites of your key competitors. What data can you get? The keywords they use, their main traffic sources, most successful SEO practices, backlinks analytics, etc.

I will just add some of the ones I have used:

#3 Create a feature list

My advice here is to start with customer flow. Just a note, customer flow is generally the path your potential customer takes on your app or website to achieve a desired outcome. With the help of this flow you can create a list of sufficient and essential features for your MVP development. Nothing extra.

For example, let’s take a simple Uber service. To order a ride, as a user, you need to ‘confirm’ the pickup area, destination point and both. You can add some additional options here, i.e. ‘Cash only’ or ‘By credit card’, or anything else you consider an essential feature for the best customer experience.

Once you’re done with the user flow, you’re ready to create a list of essential features. A helpful tool for this purpose is the Value Proposition Canvas. Its main purpose is to ensure a fit between your product and the market.

To meet your potential customer’s needs you need to address these three points: pain, benefit, and work to be done. Fill out each of these 3 points and define how your service or product will meet your customers’ needs.


When you identify pain relief medicines, creators, products and services, each point can be marked as ‘essential’. This means we have proven their value to the customer. The so-called ‘perfect fit’ here is when a proposed service or product meets and covers the biggest pain and gain.

Here you can create a table of features with these fields:

  1. must have features
  2. nice features
  3. extra features

When you finish the list you will have a clear picture of the minimum functionality you need to get started with a prototype.

#4 Prototype your idea first

By definition, a prototype is a basic model or inspiration for later versions. The Greek prefix prot-, or proto-, originally meant “made for the first time” or “for the first time in time”.

When it comes to product development, prototyping is exactly what it means: it’s always better than perfect.

Therefore, the most time and cost-effective way to move forward with your product is to create a working prototype. This will 100% save your time, effort and money and provide real practical experience of your brilliant idea. Additionally, a successful prototype can help you secure a new round of investment for your startup.

After testing your prototype on a limited audience, you can move on to creating a Minimum Viable Product, which is a working product with the minimum required features.

#5 Build, Measure, Learn (BML)

Here comes the best part of the process. You are now ready to validate your idea with an MVP to see how your future service or product looks and works with potential users. As a rule, your first users or early adopters create a narrow range.

This stage is very exciting! This helps you understand the next steps: either move forward and further develop your MVP. Or, if your idea sucks, you can save a lot of time and stop there. Both types are useful and therefore good! Find out how validated education helps companies grow today in the latest Forbes article.

You can read more about this approach here:

Some thoughts on this:

  • When building your product, it is extremely important to launch an MVP and get feedback as quickly as possible. So make sure your MVP only gets the required functionality.
  • Measure results as soon as possible. The most important sales metrics for you are customer acquisition cost (CAC) and average revenue per user (ARPU).
  • Learn from all the data you receive and decide on your further product development accordingly.

Let’s summarize. This final stage is all about communication and the ability to listen and absorb. Always (I mean this) always collect customer feedback and comments, ending with the validation and BML steps. These feedbacks will help you understand whether it is a smart decision to continue improving the product or it is a waste of time.