Five phases of new product or service development

Ready to get your new product or service off the ground? Here are the five key product development phases you'll need to surpass.

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Published: May 31, 2016

1. Idea generation

You don't have to solely rely on your own creativity for ideas for new products or services. Look for ideas in any number of places: requests from customers, brainstorms with employees, responses to a competitor's product, or suggestions on social media.

2. Research and development

R&D has two components. First, you'll need to research the costs of developing a product or service and the market need. The Competitive Intelligence Tool can help with market and competitor analysis. Next, you'll need to create a prototype. This allows you to test and refine your design, as well as determine how to market it.

3. Testing

Once you've developed a prototype of the product or service, it's time to test it with customers. This can be done in formal focus groups of customers and prospects, or informally by testing it with existing customers. Ask about what they see as standout when it comes to your products or services, where they feel your products or services can be improved, and if your price point is competitive.

4. Analysis

Testing the product or service will yield valuable data from customers, such as which features they like or don't like, how much they'll pay for it, and any potential problems. By analyzing the data, you can make modifications to the final offering before rollout.

5. Rollout

The final stage in new product and service development is rolling it out to the market. It's unlikely that your business will prosper through word of mouth alone. Promote your product or service through marketing and advertising to help make your launch a success. Fortunately, these days you have endless options — both digital and traditional — for connecting with potential customers.

Learn more about product development.

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