Links and articles about technology, design, and sociology. Written by Rian van der Merwe. Follow @RianVDM
Product discovery: a better way to build products that people love
One of the questions that really interests me is why certain digital products succeed and others fail — even if they look great and are easy to use. What can we learn from the failures to ensure that there are less of them? Is there a process that can help increase the likelihood of success?
The answer to these questions is the focus of my first article for A List Apart, entitled Usable yet Useless: Why Every Business Needs Product Discovery. From the intro:
All around us we see beautiful, empty monuments erected not for their users, but for the people who built them—and the VCs who are scouting them. Even sites and apps that go beyond beauty to usability often fail because they can’t find a big enough market.
Why can’t some interactive products find enough users to be sustainable? Why are there so many failed startups, despite a renewed focus on design? Most importantly, what can we do about it?
It was an absolute pleasure to work with the ALA team. I especially want to thank Sara Boettcher for being such a tough, gracious, and encouraging editor. I learned so much through this process — lessons I’ll take with me in my all my writing going forward.
So if these are questions you struggle with as well, have a look at the article. My hope is that we’ll see more businesses trying out the Product Discovery process as a way to build products that people love.