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How to build a successful Digital Product

How to build a successful Digital Product
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by Sanjeev Kapoor 28 Jul 2022

Digital products are among the main building blocks of the new economy. They are not just tools, but also services that helps people solve problems, perform tasks, or simply entertain. In today’s world many companies have started to build their own digital products such as websites or mobile apps to improve the productivity and experience of their customers. This can be very profitable, but still requires a very difficult and long digital product design process. To ensure that any product is successful you need proper product management. Product management is an important function in the business world. When applied to the development, deployment and operation of digital products and services, it is conveniently called Digital Product Management.

In general, building a successful product asks for discipline and adherence to a proper process. It also requires that you have a well-structured plan and deliver to your plan without guessing, experimentation and waste of resources.  Based on a disciplined product management approach you will have a much greater chance of building something that stands out in the digital universe. It is therefore important that you understand the basic principles of digital product management and that you apply them properly and consistently.


Steps and Principles of Successful Digital Product Management

Digital product management shares principles with conventional product management, yet it also comprises its own unique concepts. In most cases, a successful digital product management process includes the following steps:

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  • Problem identification: The first step to building a successful digital product is finding a problem that needs to be solved. The most important thing is to solve a real problem that challenges your customers. In this direction, you can explore and find the right problems through interviews, surveys, or even by simply going out and talking to your customers face-to-face. Likewise, it’s important to understand the purpose of a digital product i.e., the exact set of customers’ needs and wishes that it should satisfy. Remember: if your product is not driven by some real needs, then you had better not waste time building it.
  • Define your target audience: Once you know what kind of app or website you want to develop, research who your customer segment is and where they spend their time online: which websites, social media channels or apps do they use? What are their interests? What kind of information do they share on these platforms? These are all useful pieces of information when it comes down to designing and delivering a successful digital product. They are also useful to achieve problem-solution-fit, to ensure that your customers buy, use, and communicate to others about the company’s product in numbers large enough that guarantee growth and profitability.
  • Obtaining customer feedback: It is important to continually listen to your customer’s voice throughout the digital product’s lifecycle. In this direction, you can employ proven tools for collecting customers’ feedback like A/B testing. A/B testing is an essential tool for any company because it allows them to measure how much impact a change has on conversion rates, user experience and other metrics that matter for the targeted business goals (e.g., revenue). It’s also important to measure everything you do with A/B testing because otherwise you will never know if the identified changes work or not, and which options are better than others.
  • Employ an agile and iterative product development approach: Building digital products takes time, money and lots of iterations. Therefore, you must keep an open mind and be willing to make changes based on the customers’ feedback. There are no shortcuts when it comes to building a successful product, yet there are always ways to speed up the process. It is also important to adopt an agile development mindset. Agile development is supported by a set of proven software development methodologies that ensure rapid delivery of high-quality software products by adapting to change over time. Over the years agile development methods have been adopted by many companies because they work well in an environment where requirements are constantly changing, and new ideas emerge all the time.
  • Master and make the best exploitation of digital technologies: To succeed in your digital product management journey, you should learn all you can about the technology behind your product. This will help you determine what technologies are best suited for your product and which ones aren’t. For instance, there are several different programming languages available: Some are good for mobile apps, while others are better suited for websites. Keep in mind that certain languages might be more popular than others at any given time due to their ease of use or the resources available online (e.g., tutorials). Likewise, you should also master frameworks, libraries and components related to digital products in your industry. Technologies are constantly evolving so it’s important for developers to keep up with them as much as possible. You must avoid having developers and teams that become obsolete or fall behind in terms of knowledge and skillsets. Whenever there is a new technology that makes things easier for you or enhances your product in some way, you must be ready to embrace it and take advantage of it in on-going or future development cycles.
  • Engage a high-quality team with the proper skills: In order to adopt and fully leverage cutting edge digital technologies you will need a properly qualified team. The quality of your team is one of the most important critical success factors. You will not be able to finish a project properly without an experienced team and you are even more likely to fail if you do it alone. It’s better to find people who share your visions, trust them, and give them freedom when they need it.
  • Developing a successful business model: Even before you start building your digital product, you need to know how it will make money. This means finding out how much your target audience is willing to pay for a solution. The best way to do this is by conducting market research e.g., asking potential customers what they’d like in an app or website and why they would use it. Then test out different versions of your product with small groups of people until you find something that works well enough for larger-scale testing and launch. As part of your business model, you will have to make money by selling something such as advertising, subscriptions, or products. If your business model involves selling digital goods, make sure that the goods are valuable enough that people will pay for them in full or as part of a subscription plan. Most companies make money by charging users directly through subscriptions or one-time payments like apps stores charge developers for each download. However, there are other ways to generate revenue as well such as advertising.


Overall, the future of product management is digital. To be successful at digital product management, a digital strategist needs to focus on three components: understanding the market, creating products that delight users, and a well-executed business model. If you can get those three things right, you’re on your way to building a successful digital product and achieving a perfect product-market-fit.

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