How to build a great technology product?

What essential things need to consider while building a great web consumer based product


First of all, focus on the product, rather than the technology. When it comes to product, you need to identify a real customer pain or problem that is being unaddressed. The best source of inspiration are problems that you face for which you cannot find a solution.

To evaluate if this is a real problem, find others who have it. A good place to start for identifying how important a problem is to solve is with Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs. The needs nearer the bottom are generally easier to sell: Thus, Sex, Food and Medicine are easier to sell than lectures on morality.

After you have identified a real problem and solution, it is time to validate whether there is a business you can build around the solution.

Let me know if you want to walk through evaluating your idea.

Answered 11 years ago

The mark of a great consumer technology product is measured in whether it has WOM (Word Of Mouth). When you have consistent positive WOM, you know you have a great technology product.

Strong Growth Loop: If you don't have a strong growth loop, it's almost impossible to have a great technology product. The only company in my current memory that is the exception to this is Tinder. They have a really ineffective growth loop and yet because they've done all of the rest of the stuff I outline below, have amazing WOM.

The other key pieces to earning WOM are:
Instantly understandable: Eliminate all complexity such that a 6 year-old could onboard into the product and start using it and get joy from it.

Instantly Valuable: There much be an instant *perception* of value to the product. This doesn't mean that that value is delivered immediately but the user within their first experience must leave wanting whatever the app has promised awaits them.

Low Trust Barrier: This one isn't talked about much and is of critical importance. Because of all the sins of others before you, consumers are less trusting of new sites and apps than ever before. If you require FB or Twitter auth as the only way into your product, you better be darn sure you're requiring no additional permissions than bare minimum and explain exactly why or what you'll do with the graph.

A responsive, customer-driven team driving the product: Finally, the last piece required for a great consumer-focused tech product is for the company to be aligned around pleasing the customer. This means many different things in execution depending on the nature of your product but the core premise is that if you're not completely obsessed with continuing to enhance the pleasure and value the consumer experiences with your product or service, any success earned could quickly disappear.

Happy to talk to you on a call to discuss how these principles best apply to what you're building or considering building.

Answered 11 years ago

1. Do people want the product or service?
2. Do you know who else offers similar products or services?
3. Do people have a burning need for your product or service?
4. Are people willing to pay for the product or service & How much?

If you know the answer to these questions you can start the hard work of building the brand, product and service then ensure it works reliably and is responsive. User Interface and performance are vital as evidenced by the issue with the Health Exchange issues going on right now.

I have a number of years in management around application development and would gladly answer any questions you may have on a scheduled call.



Answered 11 years ago

In my opinion it is quite simple, really. Do not build a product. Build a solution to a problem. There's a huge difference! People don't buy gadgets, they buy something that solves a problem for them. So:

1. Figure out what problem needs solving
2. Build something that solves that problem in an easy-to-use way
3. Tell people about your solution
and Bonus:
4. Sell accessories and accoutrements to enhance the solution with your solution as the centerpiece purchase.

As for the specifics of how to choose technologies, how to manufacture, how to product develop, I can give you hours and hours and hours of advice on those. You just need to tell me what exactly you want to find out about. ;)

Answered 7 years ago

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