Behind every successful IT product lies a comprehensive strategic vision that considers both the market and its consumers. More technically known as a “product strategy,” it is the tool that provides companies with a set of choices to achieve their objectives. Such choices include pricing, positioning, differentiating, which market segments to prioritize, and which products to develop, among others. The same applies to e-commerce software development, you may even check it yourself.
In a business setting (including information technology), a product strategy serves three main purposes – which include the following:
An IT Product Strategy Equates to Clarity
This purpose can be distributed into four key beneficiaries where a product strategy deems to be well-received.
For the team – A clear and well-thought product strategy allows for better drafting, communication, and delivery of work between the members of the delivery team.
For the developers – Behind all of the work that goes through product development, developers can sometimes get caught up in the details and forget the bigger picture. By establishing a product strategy, developers can understand the different aspects of product development that eventually lead to bigger, company-wide strategic objectives.
For the sales and marketing teams – A well-made product strategy allows sales and marketing team members to fully elaborate on the product’s perks and unique selling points. This results in easier product-generating anticipation as well as sales.
For the customer success team – A product strategy aids the customer success team in identifying and understanding different cases of product use as well as providing better support for issues and complaints from the customers.
An IT Product Strategy Keeps Various Products in a Product Roadmap Well-Prioritized
Upon earning the stakeholder agreement for the proposal, the next step is to translate the product strategy into a high-level action plan – which equates to building an efficient product roadmap.
A common mistake among product teams is the skipping of the strategy-drafting stage, instead of jumping right into the listing of epics and teams into their product roadmap. Hence, the composition of an effective product strategy is often ignored, resulting in incorrect item prioritization, misused resources, and poor time management.
By using a product strategy, product teams will have a clearer idea of their product – resulting in the composition of a more strategically sound product roadmap.
An IT Product Strategy Improves the Tactical Decisions of a Team
No matter how intricate and well-thought an initial product roadmap is, no organization delivers a product that looks and works exactly as what was drafted in the roadmap. Change is inevitable, even in business, and product managers need to be well adapted in working with these plans and priority adjustments.
With a clear and well-thought product strategy, both the product managers and members can make more logical strategic decisions on instances when the need for plan adjustments arise, resources are limited, or when an estimated timetable needs to be changed.
Now onto the expected products themselves, a well-developed product strategy may impact the resulting products in four ways:
An IT product strategy gauges product success
With many new product programs failing, strategic product development becomes a high-risk process. Conceptualization, detailed development, launching, securing measurable goals, and reviewing the progress of each stage can help to minimize risks and ensure that the products deliver their expected results.
Another secret to product development is to prioritize customer needs instead of focusing on more technical features that the majority of the customers don’t need.
An IT product strategy improves product performance
By initiating research, consulting customers, or engaging with sales representatives, organizations can easily identify performance factors that the market is looking for, as well as flawed elements target for improvement. This approach goes in two ways – by passively helping the sales team to win the business from competitors who can’t keep up with the improved performance, and by justifying increased prices in exchange for superior products.
An IT product strategy ensures product quality
Especially for companies with their quality standards as a condition of purchase, organizations can increase their sales by imposing targets for quality improvement thru a product strategy. These may manifest via improved designs and the introduction of new materials, among others.
An IT product strategy reduces product costs for improved competitiveness
In every product strategy cutting costs is almost always a priority. Lower costs mean lower prices, which can lead to the winning of new businesses, maintaining prices, and increasing profit margin.
The Bottom Line
For a product and a business to succeed, having something “good” to offer within a public setting – say, an online marketplace, isn’t enough. Unless the public is aware of its potential, features, and advantages, one cannot expect to generate much in terms of sales – and this is where having a sound product strategy can be a game-changer.
Interesting Related Article: “How to Build an Effective and Cost-Efficient Marketing Strategy“