5 Steps in Product Development

Every innovator, be it an author, inventor or a developer, should understand that bringing and invention to the prototype stage is just one side of the story. The reality is that a large majority of product ideas reach the prototype stage and fail to move further just because the inventor knows nothing about how to market it.

Product development is actually a sequential process that starts from the conceptual stage and ends in getting it to the market. To build a strong foundation, follow the 5 steps to product development.

Start Early

Start cultivating contacts in key areas and be ready with a good network by the time your product is ready to hit the market. This will not only save you a lot of time but also provide you with valuable inputs from the market.

Market Research

Your idea has value only if there is a demand for it. If your product solves a problem, it is crucial to know whether there are enough people seeking that solution. If there is no potential for good sales, it doesn’t make sense to spend time and money on prototypes, copyrights, patents or editors. Visit retailers to know whether there is something similar already in the market or whether people are looking for what you have in mind.

Product Protection

Make sure that you secure a patent first before you even start talking about what you have developed or created. Getting your product featured in depth by someone may be a good marketing strategy but not before you have sought legal protection. If your product has a strong market potential consult an intellectual property attorney.


While you can handle the conceptual stage on your own, you need outside help in the actual production. Once you are clear that you will be going ahead, you need raw material vendors, prototype providers, manufacturers, publishers and professionals such as marketing consultants and accountants. The right place to look for them is tradeshows and local professional groups.


If you are planning to market your product on your own, you need to educate yourself about marketing strategies right now. If you read success stories you will find that success is rarely an overnight phenomenon. What appears to be an overnight success story is actually the result of spending months, even years, learning the secrets of marketing.

These are the most important 5 steps in product development. There are others as well. For example, before the launch of the product you have to apply your mind to product pricing as well.



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