How To Validate Your App Idea And Launch Quickly

You’re reading Part 2 of the Buzinga crash course How To Build An App: Moving Forward With Your App Idea

Go to Part 1: The Startup’s Guide To Measuring Market Size For An App Idea

Go to Part 3: How To Perform Competitive Analysis On Apps

Go to Part 4: How To Choose Your App Monetisation Model: 6 Key Questions

Go To Part 5: The 20 Minute, 1 Page Business Plan For Lean Startups

Have you ever had an app idea (of course) but wasn’t sure if it would work or not?

This is one of the most common questions I get, and the simple answer is: “No one really knows.”

I can make an educated guess provided that I have enough information and potentially a competitive analysis on other apps in the same industry, but it’s still just a guess.

However, there ARE ways to minimise the risk of building an app when you don’t know whether it will flop or fly.

Who Is Your Target Audience?

Firstly look at your concept.

Tell me, who do you intend to market this application towards?

  • Who is going to be using this app?
  • What’s their age group?
  • What are their interests?
  • Where do they live?
  • What is their estimated income?
  • Do they work?
  • If so, is the app idea related to what they do?

Define your audience as much as you can so that you can target directly to them and penetrate the market like a pen through a piece of paper.

What Problem Are You Solving For Your Users?

What does your application do for your users?

  • When are they going to use it?
  • How many times a day will they use it?
  • Why should they use it?
  • How long will they use it for?

This part needs to be really honed out in order to make your users love, share and reuse your application on the regular basis.

Selling an application is only half the job. The second challenge is getting your users to sell it to their friends and family.

Is your idea technically feasible?

The technology you propose to use in your mobile application, is it feasible?

As in, can it be done on a technical level?

This may not be your area of expertise, which is why there are mobile app developers available to you, to ask questions to.

Don’t be afraid to drop us a line. That’s not a pitch by the way.

This is kind of the ‘make or break’ point and trust me, you would rather find out here and now whether or not your app is even technically feasible than go any further down the road and waste any more of your time.


5 cheap and easy ways to validate your app idea 


Tip #1 – Speak to people

Simply that. Speak to people to find out what they think. Ask your co-workers, friends, family, mentors, etc. Get some feedback. And really listen. Of course there are always going to be haters. But don’t pay too much attention to their scepticism, especially if other people are really into it. It’s also worthwhile making a note of which people ARE into it and which ones aren’t The ones that like it may very well be your ideal target audience…

Tip #2 – Keyword Search

Think of some keywords related to your app idea. Then go on Google and type the into the search box with the word ‘app’ at the end of it. That will usually pull up any information on existing apps in your space. Doing this normally works better than going on the App Store even.

Tip #3 – Landing Page

Create a landing page either through Facebook or Unbounce to draw visitors into and collect their email address. Wire it up with Google Analytics – which is a free web/mobile analytics tool – to track how long people spent on your landing page, where they were coming from, etc. There is a million things you can track & measure but you need to know how to measure the success of your campaign.

Tip #4 – Ad Campaign

You can run an ad campaign through a media buyer like Google Adwords. When you run an ad campaign using keywords that people may use to find services similar to yours, you’ll quickly find out if people are really looking for it, who they are and how many people may be interested.

Tip #5 – Competition

Look for competitors. If there are already competitors in this space that generally validates the idea. Unless your competitors are crap. If you find some competitors, run a competitive analysis to find out what your chances are of succeeding if you go into competition with them.

The ultimate test: Is your app idea unique?

To test whether your app idea is unique it can help to nail down 2 things:

  1. Elevator pitch
  2. Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

If you were stuck in an elevator with someone and had 30 seconds to tell them about what your application does would it be fairly straightforward, and memorable for them?

Or does the person need clarification?

If it’s not perfectly clear the first time, it’s probably a good idea to go back to the drawing board and reduce the scope of your idea.

A unique Elevator Pitch needs to be part of your overall mobile strategy.

If you think you’ve got the elevator pitch down pat, move on to crafting your USP.

A USP is a one sentence value proposition that tells someone succinctly what makes your app better than all other competitors.

For example, Dropbox’s USP is: “Get to all your files from anywhere, on any device, and share them with anyone.”

You’re not done yet! Continue the crash course for moving forward with your app idea…

Go to Part 4: How To Choose Your App Monetisation Model: 6 Key Questions
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Logan Merrick is the co-founder and Director of Buzinga, as well as one of Australia's most recognised entrepreneurs, keynote speakers, investors and mentors. His writing on startups, technology and mobile marketing has been featured in The Australian, Business Insider, Startup Smart, Smart Company, and more.
  • Varoon Behramsha

    Theres a typo in the last para of ‘Is your idea technically feasible’ section : “you would rather find out here and now whether or not your app is even technically feasible” should be “you would rather find out here and know whether or not your app is even technically feasible” ….. [now -> know]

    • Logan Merrick

      Hey Varoon,
      I actually did mean for it to say ‘here and now’!
      Thanks for reading so thoroughly though, hope you liked the article.

  • So true.There are ways to minimise the risk in
    iPhone or Android development by validating the idea before you even
    spend any money getting it developed.Check Landing page, Ad campaign, keyword search, and competition are some of the tips before validating an app idea.

    • Logan Merrick

      Hi Alva,

      Thanks for commenting, and yes, absolutely right. Risk mitigation is a major player in any new venture.

      Thanks for stopping by ;)

    • Logan Merrick

      Very true. Thanks for your tip.