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Starting A Business 4 : Products

Yes, you have identified the needs to meet and problems to solve through observations, conversations, and research to mention a few.  The next important stage in starting a business is the design of the product or service that will adequately meet the needs and solve the problems in ways that are acceptable to potential customers. In particular, you need to consider the following in your product design:

1. Does the product solve the problem you have identified? If the product does not solve the problem, then there may be a problem with the product. The primary purpose of any business is to meet the needs of customers and provide solutions to their problems and challenges. You can test the product for free or conduct a survey among your friends and associates to find out how well the product will be an appropriate solution to the target needs and challenges.

2. What is unique about the product? How is the product different from existing products that are meant to meet the same needs or address the same problems as the target of your product?  At the minimum, your product has to be different from existing similar products if it cannot be better. Be innovative and include features that will make the product have competitive edge over its rivals. In all cases, meeting the needs of your customers and clients is the first priority when designing the product,

3. Will there be market for the product? Will your products or services be useful to large enough number of people to convert it to business?  Carry out a research to confirm this.  Who are your potential customers? Know their demographics – age, sex, education, income level, physical location etc.

4. What products compete with your product?  It is very likely that there are existing products that meet the needs you want to meet and solve the problems you want to solve.  This should not be a source of discouragement. Just figure out what will make your product stand out and different. Perhaps there are ways to improve on the existing product. Identify and incorporate features that will make consumers want to purchase your product rather than something else that satisfies the same need. You can also seek partnership or collaboration with the business already producing the product.



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