hunting cloud note: if you’re a non-technical person, are not proficient in design and code, also want to enter the wave of entrepreneurship and founded a software company, it is an uphill struggle. The founder of Twitter community management and customer service tool Nudge ashton reed (Ash Read) to share their experience.
this paper from next assigned, the following is the full text:
I don’t want to lie to you, but it was really difficult to develop a product, especially in yourself is not proficient in design and code. As a non-technical background, founded a software company will be an uphill struggle. The following 6 principles to help me, a non-technical background of entrepreneurs, to develop their ideas into the real software as a service (SaaS) products.
1, verify your concept
when I first proposed the concept of a Nudge, I want to make sure that the product can solve the pain points of ordinary users, not just my own pain points. For this, I will be your ideas into a document, and among them 1 to 2 lines of profile sent to some people I know, see if they will accept such products.
their answer is: “I’m going to use this product.” “There is no doubt that this solved the problem, I can let me know when the product release?” Others also said, will like this product. And I was delighted with this feedback.
then, I invited a friend to help me develop the only a web site, explains the function of the Nudge. This website in a few days later. In order to promote the Nudge, I wrote a few blog post, and in the Hacker News and Inbound.org strong correlation in the community to share the article links, see the feedback of others.
see more people registered in, or interest in the product after, I decided to continue to develop.
if you can’t find a friend to help you develop this only one page web site, so you have a lot of solution: you can use the WordPress theme, or similar Strikingly and Launch services to Rock.
experience: if you can’t develop minimum feasibility product, you will need to first prove that you are about to develop the use of products can attract the target user.
2, learn to concept shown in visual way
as a people who do not familiar with technology, you need to find a way, to colleagues describe their concept. I soon found that reading a text in different ways. Although the text is still very important, but the visualization method is the key to express ideas.
I have the most basic knowledge of Photoshop, in some cases, I will use Photoshop to express ideas about the design changes or interface layout. For the most basic wireframes, I use a named wireframes. Cc tool. This help me quickly express their own ideas, draw wireframes be clear at a glance, the application works to help others understand the expectations.
experience: turn your concept into visual content. This will not only help everyone work together with you, will also help you see clearly that how concepts into reality.
3, master the art of giving valuable feedback
“home page icon is too large. “I hope the user can invite team members on this page.” This is usually sent to my colleagues feedback. This is mainly some feedback about the function, expressed my expectations, but did not specify what parts need to be adjusted.
valuable feedback should be more clear. Provide feedback is a better way should be like this: “home page icon is too big, can reduce 25%?” Or “this page should have an email form, help people invite team members to join Nudge. This should be in below the main title, and includes the following several parts. This is my draw wireframes.”
the more clear feedback, help the technical team to understand what I want. Good feedback is very necessary to any project, especially when you want to make sure that the time node and budget. Bad feedback can lead to project delay, takes 30 minutes to correct the problem and some will take 3 to 4 hours.
experience: with the design and development team the perspective-taking, think about your question: what kind of information they need.
4, become planning experts
with the old saying said: “the failure of the planning is equivalent to planning for the failure.” In the Internet project, it’s true.
in the first few weeks of Nudge development, the whole situation is a mess. We have a brief plan, list the function of the product needed. This helps us in the early development. But clearly, I can make a better planning, to make things progress more smoothly.
a developer so said to me: “we need to be more perfect structure.” I fully agree with this. We began to adopt agile development mode, the planning more perfect details for each function. Such adjustment means, I can always plan for the next stage of development, and the developers will focus on the task.
because each stage of development have a good planning, and it is fully assessed before implementation, this means that before the start of the work, 90% of the questions have answers. This is a more efficient way.
experience: any development project is easy to tend to be complicated. Without proper planning, some seemingly simple function will lead to 10 times process is complicated. Need to take measures to avoid this problem as soon as possible.
5, grasping the test
any web development project, I think the final results are not as perfect as originally envisioned. Test is very important in the process of new products to market a stage. About the test, you need to find out as much as possible.
you can test by oneself, but in order to obtain the best results, I suggest choose some subjects came to help. The tester should have not used your product, which can grasp to the question you might miss. After I prepare for the test, I contacted some initial registration service, and will test the information submitted to BetaList, find hope to try new tools and give feedback.
a report on the holes should be as detailed as possible, even the most simple spelling mistakes. When I meet with holes, I will report the following information:
– found vulnerabilities page
– need to what kind of changes
– I use the browser’s details
– I for what procedures (such as registration, or upgrade to pro version)
if you need to design and layout adjustment, I will also draw sketches to explain.
experience: in the deeply involved in a project, you can easily miss some loopholes or spelling errors. Before the formal launch, please invite a group of testers to try out your application.
6, think ahead
At the beginning of the
when you start the project, customer service and data analysis seems to be very distant work, but you need to think in advance, what tools you will need to run your own business. For example:
– how are you going to deal with customer service?
analysis software – do you need?
– how do you handle payment?
usually, these tools need to be integrated into your site code, and you need to know how to do will be better as soon as possible. In fact, you need to think in advance is not just the third party tools. In front of the complete project development, need to think there are many other problems, such as:
your application hosting services to use? You need a reliable, flexible size hosting services. Before make a decision, I think the most important three factors including:
1) reliability: you don’t want their own application downtime.
2) technical support: when hosting services appear problem, you want them to respond quickly, first-class technical support.
3) user-friendly: some host site technical too strong. I like service should be able to help me to easily manage the tasks that need to be, for example, to set new E-mail address from our domain.
if you plan to set up the blog, it is best chose before product release. Need to decide, including, where do you want a blog platform (such as WordPress or Ghost) set on the blog, blog which is located in the domain.
content management system
as a technical expert, you hope to be able to easily update the content of the website, such as spelling errors, and images. Please think how to manage their content updates.
you need administrator tools to help users solve the problem, handle customer service requests. If there is no details of the plan, even if is to update the E-mail address such simple things will become very difficult.
experience: in the process of product development, please consider everything carefully, and before the demand plan. (mingtao Lin)