‘Shipped’ is Better than ‘Perfect’

Launching a product and getting it to market is hard. Getting your idea from your imagination to ‘shipped’ is hard.

Nomatter how easy you think it will be to build a product, getting it to market is hard. Deploying a website or app is not as easy as flipping a switch. That said it’s important that you have the right mindset throughout the development process so that you do not fall pray to the “perfect product” thinking. 

Paul Grahamfounder of Y Combinator goes as far as saying you should be embarrassed of your first product. Now I’m not saying you need to go that far as you can get some pretty good work and ship some great products from the onset but the thinking behind it is sound. 

This philosophy is… the goal of every idea, every product should be to get it in the hards of users as fast as possible to get them to play around with the product and start to gather feedback. Users are strange, unique creatures and often will use or more likely NOT use a feature in the way you expected and the only way to know that is to have your idea shipped.

This is one of the hardest things for first time founders to understand. They want to wait to launch till they can “tweak this” or “tweak that.” The reason this is the cause for so many failed ideas is because this causes your idea to NOT be in the market. You don’t even know if the product you’re thinking, the way you’re thinking, has legs or not. So why would you spend any time or energy on something before knowing whether it’s the right direction?! Once you have the validation from the market, go ahead – spend as much time on the feedback you got from your users. Remember – a Shipped product is better than a Shelved product.

Tangible Advice: Try your hardest to not fall prey to this thinking. What we like to encourage others to do is to set users expectations by calling your product a Beta or Alpha, which in all reality it is. 

Real talk: Remember you will NOT get millions of users right away. So the time that you do get that millionth user, your product will be much different. In software development there is literally no such thing as perfect. The is only good enough for right now. We are very much of the mindset that software is always breaking and will always change. Therefore if you wait too long to get something out in the market – it will be too late.