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MVP? Better go for a MUP

February 8th, 2020 / Design management, Product design

Don't look for an MVP, look for a MUP

It is often sought to develop the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) establishing a series of functionalities that the product must have as a minimum to go on the market, the problem here is: What use are these functionalities if the user is not capable of use them? So we must change the focus and look for the Minimum Usable Product (MUP) .

Just because a product is viable from a business point of view does not mean that it is so for the user. No person who is part of the development of the project can act as a "voice of the user" without proper prior research.

Many times we make the mistake of using our own assumptions to make design decisions, having the false feeling that we too are users and therefore our opinion is valid for it. While it is true that the vast majority of us are "users" in other products, when it comes to the one we are developing the following problem arises:

"You know too much"

Whether you are a developer, director of architecture, product manager, designer, etc. You know too much about the product basically because you are developing it . Now you might ask yourself: "What difference does it make that I know too much ...?" . Here is an example.

What you suppose...

You are developing the flow to order food in your delivery App and one of the functionalities of your MVP is to be able to eliminate products that you have previously added, so you suppose that the logical thing to do would be:

1. Go to the order summary.
2. Touch the "Update Cart" button.
3. Delete the product you want.
4. Save the changes.

*Just Eat real flow

The reality of the user...

If you haven't researched your users, unfortunately you cannot assume that the above flow is correct. In fact, you could ask yourself the following questions to see that you are indeed missing information:

"Do you know if this flow is the most efficient?"
"Will your users be able to perform the task?"
"Do you know if the flow conforms to the mental model of your users?"
"Is cognitive friction being generated at any point?"

The answers will be found by conducting a correct user research. In this way we can develop a MUP (Minimum Usable Product) with which we can be sure that the included functionalities will be used effectively and efficiently by users.

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