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Building better digital products: Discover

A complete guide for creating truly impactful and effective digital products.
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Discovery underpins success

So, what is “discovery”? At its core, it aims to “find a problem to solve”.

In a digital world that’s getting more complex and competitive, running discovery sessions and using some of the tools we include will help you to identify real opportunities. At one end of the scale, you may spot new gaps in the market. On the other end, you may be able to provide some quick wins to your existing customers.

Along with finding the most appropriate problem to solve, we’ll also walk through defining this problem in an effective way.

So many projects start with the “what”, or “how”, but can often miss the critical “why”. The discovery phase is an essential step in setting things up for success from the start.

In it’s simplest form, it helps a team to step back from their world, and take in more information and data to help drive decisions about their product.

The extra work involved in the discovery phase can often be a time cost that many are tempted to skip, but this is a false shortcut. Time spent in this phase can help to ensure that you set off on the right path, and help to avoid “undoing” work during the implementation.

And that’s not to say that continual validation can’t still play a part, driven by a solid agile mindset. Discovery is an ongoing process - but extra attention at the beginning will ensure things start in the right direction.

Innovation is a key aspect for any successful business to have at their core, but it can be a hard thing to actually implement. Even for those companies who are already creating digital products, it can be difficult to get true innovation into the cycle of design and development. When implemented in a formal way, discovery can be a key step in driving real innovation.

Another way that this phase helps is by allowing a team to step back from any solution-based ideas, and expand their options on how to achieve a goal. As discovery helps to uncover the true problem and find ways to measure success, you have a specification that’s stripped back to its essential parts. This gives a team freedom to think about the best way to solve that problem - and that may be a radically different solution to what you would normally implement.

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Over 30 jam-packed pages

Actionable content and tools to help improve your discovery phases.

Part one of a complete series


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