The product or service and technology section examines the issues of identifying customers’ problems, added value provided to customers, the scalability of a product/service and technology used.
“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.”
– Henry Ford
The most important aspect in analysing a product or service is to understand which problem it solves for the market/customer. In identifying a problem, it is important to know whether a customer must have the problem solved or whether the customer just thinks it would be nice if it was solved. In addition to defining the problem, it is just as important to understand what constitutes added value provided to customers (costs are halved, sales increase by 20%, time is saved by 30%). Occasionally, added value for customers consists of the unique properties of the product.
The scalabilityof a product or service is a basic prerequisite. A good test on scaling can be done by considering, for example, a potential order placed with a company: if an order for 100, 1,000, 10,000 or one million items were to be placed tomorrow, how long would the delivery take and where would potential bottlenecks form in the production chain?
An essential aspect to identify is the stage of the technology. The earlier the stage at which a product or technology is, the higher will be the costs incurred before it can be brought onto the market. As new technology products comprise a significant risk, the added value received by customers must be greater than the value of other products on the market. In the case of product or technology-based companies, it is therefore not enough that the technology is new if the solution is only slightly cheaper, better and more comprehensive than competing alternatives on the market. The difference must be significant.