The purpose of product prototype development is to shorten development times and to reduce the costs of product development. A product prototype is a working model that offers a much clearer picture of the system to be developed, but only if it is done right. Thus to help entrepreneurs develop a fully functional prototype, here is the list of some of the most important points to remember while developing a product prototype, and they are as follows:
Keep ready a potent prototype plan – Most entrepreneurs believe that a product prototype development is a linear process. Product designers come up with product designs, conclude the best product design, create a prototype, and test it before proceeding to bulk manufacturing.
However, the process of product design and rapid prototyping is much more iterative. Separated teams and departments in an organization ideates, votes on the most rewarding and transformational ideas, and everyone adopts an empathetic mindset to understand what customers actually require. In the process of new product development, the phase of product prototype development is all about failing and incorporating feedback on the go, so you can reach a profitable product at the earliest.
Keep the product prototype simple – While developing a product prototype, most entrepreneurs believe that they have to come up with an impressive prototype at the first attempt and then simply collect feedbacks before taking it to market. However, when they do that, they spend thousands of hours and dollars to produce something customers don’t understand or don’t require.
In design thinking, to develop a product prototype, you utilize the materials that are readily available to you. Utilizing simple materials to develop a product prototype helps you get the idea out on the table, without investing extra time and money. Creating a simple product prototype helps you gain incredibly valuable feedback.
Collect valuable, informed feedback – When you test your prototype, search for actionable ways to enhance it. Carry your product prototype to a wide variety of audiences, even if it is of low resolution or made out of simple materials such as pipes and cardboard, and explain it to them. If explaining is not enough, tell them how your product can be used. The sole intention of your prototype is to gather valuable, informed feedback that’s both negative and positive. Always welcome questions, comments, and new ideas for making your concept better.
Time to act on feedback – You have to keep your team on standby, asking them to pay attention to feedback and iterating it on the go. The valuable feedback that you received after developing a prototype will help you make a better product, or help you find out that your prototype is going nowhere. In both the cases, you stand a chance of delivering an improved product, which will be loved by your customers.
The ultimate goal of rapid prototyping isn’t to perfect your final product; it is to create ideas until you have cinched all the basic aspects. Then you can create a superior version to test.
A product prototype development allows you to bank on ideas and feedbacks in almost real time. Learning lessons from the failures and implementing them into to the process allows an entrepreneur to easily tweak and embellish a product with relatively low cost.
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