1. Do Your Research
It is always important to research your competitors. Break down your idea into smaller bits and then find out if someone has already done it. See what ways you could improve upon your competitors and take notes on what the competitors are doing successfully. Getting an idea of what works and what doesn't will save you a lot of hassle in the future.
In addition to this, research websites that you like the look and feel of or websites that have a function that you really like using. With these, it becomes a lot easier for developers and designers to work out your ideal design and function of your new online application.
2. Plan for Now and the Future
To bring your start-up from a fully-formed idea into a system that is ready to launch, a lot of meticulous planning needs to be done. Look at it as an investment of time in the present that will save you heaps of time in the future. If something unexpected or unplanned comes up during the development process, or right after launching your site, not only will it be likely to be more time consuming to solve, but it will be stressful too! Things to consider in your planning process are:
- What do you want out of the online application?
- What do you believe your users will want?
- How will the users interact with the system?
- How much time and money are you willing to spend?
- Where do you see the system in 1 year, in 5 years and beyond?
3. Start Stainless Steel rather than 24-Carat Gold
What we mean by this is that having a strong base without all of the frills is more important than going for gold straight away and potentially failing. No one wants to think that their idea could flop, but if you start slowly you have the flexibility to adjust your start up to better match what your audience is looking for and you'll have an easier time taking a new course, should your audience want something slightly different.
A common mistake that many new websites make, is that they try to build their whole entire idea initially. Not only does this mean greater amounts of time and money spent, but it also means more maintenance, more avenues for mistakes and less flexibility in changing the whole scope should the idea not have enough traction. Think of the "skyscraper" problem - it's a lot easier to build the lobby of a skyscraper and add more floors in the future than it is to build the entire skyscraper flat on the ground and try and stand it upright.
Narrow your online application idea down to the fundamental features - the main "draw" of your system. Place anything else in a "nice-to-have" folder and refer to them once your online application has gained traction and approval.
4. Give us a Ring
Once your idea is fully fleshed out and planned, give us a call. We'll be able to review your idea, work out the best way to turn your thoughts into code and give you suggestions that may increase the reachability and attractiveness of your online application and lower the timeline and budget.