There are over 70,000 startups in the United States alone. But despite the huge popularity of startup companies among entrepreneurs, 90% of startups will eventually fail. And that doesn’t even depend on the type of startup you are running.
Whether you want to start selling dropship coffee and coffee products, build an app, or work on educational technology, you will face similar challenges as startups in other markets. You will need to have a rock-solid idea that you can build upon and use as a differentiating factor that increases the chances of your success.
The good news is that while the startup world can seem crowded, there are always new niches and ideas that can help you stand out and attract an eager audience that’s willing to buy from you and invest in your idea.
To help you maximize the chances of your startup being a success, let’s go over a few helpful expert tips that will put you in a position to succeed from the very start.
Look Into the Current Solutions
The best place to start when developing a startup idea is to look at the industry you are interested in getting into. Usually, this will be an industry you’re already familiar with, although it can also be a field you have a passion for and want to get into. Sometimes, having a fresh outlook can actually be an advantage when coming up with a startup idea that generates traction.
Thoroughly analyze what the industry’s top solutions and service providers are doing and what makes them successful. A good idea is to look at the reviews and try to identify the most common complaints from users. These types of insights can help you better understand what the audiences want and enable you to better cater to their needs.
Define a Key Idea
After you do your research, you will probably have a few vague ideas that could potentially become something that delivers value to your audience. But to verify that the ideas are actually worth pursuing, you must spend time fleshing them out and creating an entire business plan around what they could become.
You can use a business proposal template to create an appealing pitch for your business. It can encompass the foundational pieces of your potential business and help you see how it would look in action, experimenting with branding elements, core value proposition, and everything else that will help you gain traction and attract the attention of the right people.
Build on the Main Problem You Want to Solve
Once you believe you have an idea worth pursuing, it’s time to dig deep into what it could look like and find the potential paths your startup business could take. This is where you work out what the company would actually look like, including the primary services you would offer, the target customers you would try to reach, and the marketing and financing plans that would help you grow.
While you will have to make some assumptions during this stage, you should also try to talk to real people who you believe should be interested in what you have to offer. These types of conversations can be incredibly illuminating and help you understand how your product fits into the market and what your audience expects from you in order to consider your services.
The best way to do that is to sit down with people from your audience for a one on one interview. While this does take time, the ability to ask follow-up questions and see the non-verbal reactions from real people is an invaluable resource that will help you know where to place the emphasis when developing our startup.
Alternatively, you could also go with surveys, which might not provide as much depth but can help you get insights from a large number of people. And when trying to figure out if enough people would be interested, the scale of the insights plays an important role as well.
Create a Minimum Viable Product
The only way to take your startup off the ground is to have something to show prospective customers and investors. And that means that while you don’t need to have a fully-developed product or service, you still need to have a minimum viable product with basic features that can provide real value to customers.
You can then use this MVP to test out how your customers feel, collect feedback from beta users, and continue collecting data as you refine your plan and gain a better understanding of what it will take to carve out a space for your company in the market.
The good news is that once you have a minimum viable product, you can begin making sales and generating revenue, which is a crucial part of sustaining your business and allowing the idea to develop as you build momentum.
Launching a successful startup is a big challenge that most entrepreneurs fail at. But while it’s difficult, it can also be incredibly lucrative if you manage to create a product with actual demand in your market.
With the tips listed above, you should have a better chance of understanding the industry and attracting the right customers.