After failing to quickly validate ideas in the past, I've finally understood how to optimize the process.
Last year, I'd spent 6 months trying to build a complex product to validate a simple idea. Now, it only took me less than 24 hours to build an MVP, ship it, and get generate my first revenue ($140 with $50 profit).
As a maker myself, I've always had an affinity for startup tees. When I was recently updating my wardrobe, I had trouble sourcing well-designed startup shirts that were discrete enough to wear throughout everyday life.
My product solution
I wanted to design my own personalized tees that catered to my interests as a maker. Unlike most bold startup tees, these shirts were designed to match my everyday wardrobe. I wanted these to look like designer shirts that I could wear to any occasion, not just industry hackathons.
After printing my own designs, I gave it a name and shared the collection with the Product Hunt community to see if this also solved anyone elses problem. I quickly built a free Teespring store and uploaded my designs.
With my history of launching products, I didn't have any expectations, but was surprised to wake up the next morning with 4 product orders.
Compared to my previous products that have failed, I noticed some key trends about this launch that made it much more successful than anything in the past.
There's certainly nothing innovative about a t-shirt store. To my advantage, I already new the overarching product was validated. At the end of the day, the real validation was about the designs in my collection.
2. You can always start simpler
I'd initially thought that I'd create a simple Shopify store to validate the idea, but soon realised that even this would be too much.
Instead of wasting time buying a domain and configuring the store design, I decided to use Teesprings pre-built solution. There's was nothing special about this storefront.
I hope this advice can help anyone on their journey to validating a product.
I'd also love to hear any feedback you might have about the product. With my target market being makers, I'd love to know if there are any designs you prefer, or if you even have suggestions for future designs.
You can check out the site here.