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Critique idea: An app to help devs/ businesses refine SaaS MVPs


#1

I’ve been looking for a new project to take on, and have had a number of ideas (but none that great). This led me to realize, I’d really like a tool to help generate possible SaaS ideas, then refine them down to a (potentially) profitable MVP.

Questions:
What is your biggest frustration with generating and refining potential SaaS ideas?
Does this sound like something that would be of value to you personally?
What features would provide the most value to you when refining project ideas?
Is there a tool like this that I just haven’t found yet?
What does your idea generation/ refinement process look like currently?


#2

Yes, but this SaaS already exists - it is this forum.


#3

I was more thinking somewhere to track ideas, projects, potential client contacts, interview notes, etc… That or maybe some type of user facing idea generator site where they could suggest app ideas, and suggest/ up/ down vote mvp features.


#4

I feel your own idea requires some MVP thinning :slight_smile: so far it looks too generic and too vague, sorry.

Frankly, I do not believe MVP-ing an idea takes a dedicated SaaS. It takes a friend to bounce ideas off.


#5

Let’s see:

Minuscule market.

Impossible to target advertising for it. E.g. on facebook you can target people by their age, their physical location, their interests but you can’t buy ads for “people who need a tool to refine saas mvps”.

By design it’s only meant for temporary use (until you decide on an idea).

Evernote is a viable (and free) substitute.

Most likely not recognized as a problem by potential costumers.

Or, to turn this around, when you think about a business idea, those are some of the things you need to think about:

  • how big is the potential market i.e. how many people could possibly have this problem? For this idea: not many
  • how much money can you possibly make from a single customer? If you have $5/month SaaS and expect a customer would use it for 3 years on average, you get $180 LTV (life time value) per user. That has to cover your R&D, customer support, marketing and hosting costs. Here you have an idea that is, by design, a short term.
  • how can you reach potential users and market/promote/advertise your service to them in a cost effective manner (must be less that LTV or else you go bankrupt)? Most common way is targeted advertising on Google or Facebook but in this case you can’t target that specific group of people.
  • are there acceptable substitutes? Based on your description, it seems like paper notebook/evernote/workflowy/trello already allow to organize this kind of information
  • how strong is the signal that people recognize this as a problem? If you see 10 different people asking on internet forum how to convert pdf to excel, you can infer that there is demand for pdf to excel converter. Here it seems like you have weakest possible signal i.e. no external validation. You came up with an idea and are soliciting strangers to evaluate it in a social forum, which invites confirmation bias because people don’t want to come off as mean and crush your dreams

#6

Thanks for taking the time to leave some well thought out feedback. The temporary by design aspect is a problem I had not been able to get around with this idea, as is the very limited market.

I am very much so in the idea generation process of my journey. Thanks for helping me take one off the list.


#7

Why would you target customers who a) don’t have much money by definition (pre-MVP) and b) will churn more as you do a better job (nature of your app)?

Sounds like a good MVP analysis tool will never exist as it would tell itself to not launch.