Product Prototype

Product Prototype: Most Common Mistakes Startups Make

When it comes time to produce a product prototype, it means your business has reached the essential step between concept and mass production. Releasing a proper prototype is important because that means manufacturing in mass quantities is just around the corner.

That’s exactly why it’s important to do this step correctly. After all, the prototype of your new product is used to show potential retailers why they should do business with you.

Take a look at some things you should absolutely avoid doing before you produce your prototype.

Using the Wrong Technology

It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in or what kind of products you plan on producing, using the wrong technology can happen to anyone.

Simply put, there are companies that pick the wrong programming language and platforms for their IT project, companies that pick the wrong material for their product, and there are even businesses that try to save money by ordering the prototype to be made overseas.

For instance, if you have a prototype that should be made out of firm materials, don’t opt for 3D printing. It may seem like a cheap but useful solution at the start, but it’s not. The worst thing that can happen during the demo is that your prototype breaks or stops functioning properly.

Instead, choose a better option even if it’s pricier. For this situation, consider aluminum extrusions. It is fairly simple. Aluminum bar stock is a square of extruded aluminum. The machine follows the extrusion process for a variety of shapes. This means that you’ll be able to use the design you want without a problem. The method is proven to be the preferred mechanical method of prototyping.

Making It Too Complicated

There are a few reasons why making a too complicated prototype for the first demo is important to avoid.

First of all, the more complicated the structure, the more difficult it is to create it. Also, the product prototype and the first production runs will cost more when a business doesn’t have extensive budgetary abilities.

So, select a design that is fairly simple for your prototype. That’s how you can get a working prototype quickly, but also get a decent quality product out at a fair price.

As soon as your business starts making decent money, you can go for a more complex design and experiment with new functionalities.

Striving for Perfection

The prototype you are about to create is a mockup of what will follow afterward. It’s not meant to be the perfect realization of your new product.

Instead of focusing on every detail and aiming at perfection, you should put your time and efforts toward building the main user flow you want to test and get feedback on.

If you have started to push pixels on your prototype, you should stop with the prototype and start getting people to test it out. Also, keep in mind that your definition of perfect might not be what your customers believe is perfect.

Remember, a prototype should get you a minimum viable product or basic version of your design out for product testing with consumers.


Not Testing It Enough

Never make the mistake of not testing the prototype before the demo.

Many small businesses either fail to test the product prototype or do the wrong tests. It often happens when companies verify the product is easy to set up and works as it should without asking users for their opinion.

On the other hand, many companies perform product testing with consumers but fail to run performance tests.

In this situation, you should aim for the best of both worlds. Do the proper tests but also have some users try out the product.

Missing the Deadline

Since a prototype is an experiment that you have to come up with for a demo run, you need to create it in time for the show. Figure out approximately how long you’ll need to work on it just so that you don’t miss the deadlines.

Be careful, plan your work, and remain true to deadlines. That’s how you’ll keep the prototyping process focused and valuable.

Final Thoughts

Making mistakes during the prototyping phase will cost you valuable time and even more valuable money. As a responsible manager, you can’t let that happen.

Go through the article piece one more time just to get everything right. Remember, you need to create solid product. And, it must be marketed quickly and released to the general public in a timely manner.