Building a business with a product is fun. It’s also a long, difficult journey. That journey of developing a product that includes the many twists and turns of building features, sunsetting features, and the like is called a product roadmap. However, like a traditional map, each road leads to a decision point. In the product world, this is where product prioritization comes into play.
Early on in a product’s lifecycle of a business just starting out is the vision of its founders. The term “MVP” may be tossed around meaning “minimum viable product” as coined by Eric Ries in The Lean Startup
. At its core is the prioritization of the key features that will generate the most value and demand in the market as quickly as possible – read: as minimal resources as possible.
But once initial traction takes off (or perhaps doesn’t), there’s a myriad of choices a startup can take in its product journey. This is where the importance of product prioritization comes in. Why is product prioritization so important?
- Most folks enjoy the creation of new ideas, not necessarily incremental improvements to existing features/ product(s).
- Development can take on the personal interests rather than based on the impact and influence of another.
- As a partof the shield to guard against the “Next Feature Fallacy” where the idea that “this” new feature will improve traction, sales, etc.
- To align cross-functional teams on not only the impact, but the efforts required by all to produce XYZ changes.
Really, the key is being able to optimize for value based on limited resources. Product prioritization requires objective measuring to ensure the most valuable product, and thus company, is created.