November 1, 2017 |

What’s More Important: Design or Functionality?

Ideally, your platform should be easy to use and work just as intended. Some people will give the easy answer that a savvy entrepreneur should strike a balance between their platform’s design and function. That answer doesn’t consider the monetary reality that many startups face. 

If you’re a smaller or newer startup, you might not have the resources to invest in both design and function. I’d like to offer my own strategic advice for navigating this decision, and hopefully, help you make the most of your available capital. 

First: Prove Your Concept

When you’re a new startup, you rely more heavily on individual investors and have relatively few resources. Your primary mission is to continue to convince new investors to believe in your idea. You also need to do this quickly because money runs out quickly, and so you have to get to work right away.

Consequently, your first priority should be putting pen to paper, or in this case, code to the computer screen. Make a rough model of your idea and don’t worry too much about how it looks. An ugly platform that works is better than a pretty platform that doesn’t work.Of course, it shouldn’t be a total mess. You’ll have plenty of time to improve the look and feel once you receive funding.

After you present your idea to your investors, prove to them that it works, and they approve more funding, then you might start to think about how to improve the design for the end-user.

Second: Pivot To the User Experience

Once you start hiring sales professionals, growth hackers, and digital marketers, your next step is to continue to build your platform while making it consumer ready. If you have any competitors, it’s especially important that your platform is easier to use than theirs. People are more likely to choose a platform that they find easier to use, even if it’s not as well built as a competitor.

You can maximize your platform’s potential for growth by allocating your limited resources as described above. By first prioritizing investors and then the end-user, you spend money when & where it makes the most sense based on your startup’s size. I truly hope this helps frame your strategic thinking.