Why do digital products fail? Several reasons lead to a negative entrepreneurial outcome, but one comes before the others: a lack of proper idea validation.  

When an innovator comes up with an idea, carried away by the momentum of excitement and joy, they might think, „This is it! This will change the world! “. In Back to the Future, Doctor Emmett Brown showed us how many ideas sometimes need to be shelved until you hit the eye of the storm to make a time machine.  

The problem is that this subjective feeling we cherish for our creative work is not a safe bet.  

We must conduct a reality check for every business vision, gauge its market potential, and calculate how to make it work.  

This article explores various aspects of software product idea validation and widens its flow. 

What Is a Digital Product? 

It might seem obvious, but let’s first define a digital product. It is any intangible good that can be created, sold, stored, and used online, meaning that a digital product is also a digital asset. Typically, it brings a two-way value, benefiting both the creator who sells it and the consumer who buys it.  

The most popular examples of digital products are commercial software solutions, video games, electronic books, streaming content (movies, series, and music), online courses, design products (videos, animations, logos), and stock photos. On a wider level, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), crypto assets, security tokens, and other cutting-edge digital items are also considered digital products.  

Intangible Goods in a Tangible Reality 

Let’s say you want to start selling vintage gaming consoles on Etsy or any other similar platform. You buy a few items – or take them from your garage – sign up to the website in question, upload their images, and wait if anyone will buy it. It’s a rather fast and economical way of validating a product idea.  

As opposed to that, selling intangible goods, i.e., digital products, to buyers in a tangible reality is a different challenge. The analogy with the example above would be to have software bought or developed without any prior research and place it on the market for sale. Even if you’re not a businessperson or a software engineer, you probably understand how hazardous this would be.  

So, even before contacting a software development company, answer these questions: 

  • Who would buy your digital product? 
  • What does the product do, i.e., what problem does it solve? 
  • What USP are you going to underline? 

Don’t think about the revenue and price tags at first; specify the issue your product is going to resolve instead. If it solves many people’s problems, the monetary reward will come.  

When you’ve meticulously assessed you’d be able to make a living off the idea in question, you’re ready to move on. 

BM Insight: It’s a common belief that digital marketing services come after software has been launched. This is only partly correct – marketing agencies or in-house teams do carry out such activities. What many people aren’t aware of is that you need market research and data analysis already at the dawn of the product validation stage. Not every Jane and John Doe with an interesting digital product idea is adept at measuring the market pulse and digesting the obtained data. In her comprehensive guide Empowering Brands through Full Spectrum: Digital Services: BrightMarbles Approach, our Chief Experience Officer Nevena Nemeš explains why every startup needs marketing services from dawn one.  

Harsh Competition and Idea Validation 

There were 5.3 billion Internet and social media users as of October 2023 worldwide. We can imagine that millions of people brainstorm daily about making some kind of digital product.  

Unlike people, not all digital products are born equal. For some, the peak of digital creativity is to take a photo, offer it on a stock photo website, and wait for a miracle to happen.  

For others, conceiving, validating, and developing a viable digital product is a serious business operation. 

We’ll take the SaaS industry to illustrate our point and underline the importance of product idea validation. As the global SaaS market was worth $262.15 billion in 2022 – and the predicted compound annual growth rate (CAGR) will be 13.7% in the 2022-2030 period – wise people would consider developing a practical SaaS tool.  

Since this is a broad field, let’s assume that we have a client who has researched how remote teams handle their business projects, with a special accent on the organizational issues they face. Surveying and interviewing people of different levels – from managers to HR-specialists and core workers – would help us understand what practical features currently most popular tools don’t have. For example, it might be integrating billing or payroll management and time-tracking with project management cards. Once the market gap is noticed, we’d turn another round of interviews, surveys, and questionnaires to validate that businesses would use such an all-in-one SaaS tool.  

The development process can begin once the collected data convinces the stakeholders that the product idea has market potential and is worth investing in.  

Working on Your Idea with the BM Crew 

As a software development company, BrightMarbles Group Holding (BMGH) builds software, from mobile apps to cybersec tools, to comprehensive business solutions. 

When you come to us, how do we know whether your idea is a blockbuster or a bomb? We can’t tell for sure in advance, at least not until we have an initial meeting to hear more about what you have in mind.  

Roughly speaking, we are able to assume whether a digital product idea would raise any interest. From our experience in finetuning the software development life cycle for every new project, and mastering client communication along the way, we’ve grown some prediction tentacles.  

Still, there’s a significant distance between us starting to believe that a certain mobile app might work and its launch.  

Ever since its foundation, BMGH has been on the forefront of purpose-driven software development. And while we work on projects from different industries, we always embrace business ideas that would make a difference in this world.  

In the next instance, we’ll cover a potential case in which a client has an idea for a health and wellness app. They want this solution to offer workout sessions, wellness tips, and AI-features to personalize workout and nutrition plans. The idea-validation procedure in this example would include grasping users’ expectations from such an app, personal data security elements, and the scope of personalization. Again, for the sake of example, market research could indicate a market need for mental support, in addition to physical workout and diet. This would be a fine USP to properly position the app a priori and start with the development stages.  

BM Insight: Our team is here to guide you through every stage of software development, regardless of the product type. In our guide Mobile App Development: From Ideation to Polished Product, we cover all the major lanes, tracks, and local paths that a team of mobile app developers should tread on to finish a mobile app with flying colors.  

In the Tech of IT 

Web Development concept with digital devices on sky blue background.

Validating a digital product idea is especially important for startups. The exciting and refreshing nature of such businesses is the reason why we’re keen on establishing long-term partnerships with seed-stage companies.  

Let’s assume you’re a startup owner who has done market research before paying us a visit, and the data you’ve gathered shows there’s fertile ground for your product idea. For the purpose of getting straight to the point, we’ll say that you’ve arranged everything with our management, including the general app development pricing terms and conditions. 

Here’s what the start of our collaboration would look like: 

Stage 1: Integrated Product Discovery 

  • Initial Engagement: Our collaboration begins as we form a cross-functional development lineup, consisting of product owners, UI/UX designers, engineers, and other relevant experts. The aim here is to understand your vision and the main goals of your project.  
  • Discovery Workshops: As we arrange product discovery workshops, we immerse ourselves into your product idea, detecting the market trends, conducting the competitor analysis, inspecting the technical feasibility, and ensuring proper cost evaluation. These workshops are crucial for further decision-making. This is where we meet each other, to customize our strategies to your vision and lay foundations for a successful app-dev project.  

Stage 2: Validation and Agile Development 

  • Lean Validation Techniques: We apply proven lean validation methods to tweak your ideas, in accordance with the market, to mitigate risks and wisely use our resources. 
  • Agile Development Process: With our elaborate agile development methodology, we can quickly test and adapt all product features, building an evergreen environment of innovation. We know that developing groundbreaking products is never a straight line, and our agile approach corresponds with such challenges. 

Stage 3: User-Centered Design and Testing 

  • Prototyping and User Testing: During our collaboration, we’ll test your idea with potential users, to gather first-hand insights into its usability and functionality. At this stage, any user challenges or issues will come to the surface. We take great care of confirmation bias – a tendency to look for information that will confirm our assumption or expectations – to provide impartial testing that offers users’ genuine reactions and comments on the prototype. 
  • Feedback and Iteration: At this stage, we insist on asking open-ended questions to get true insights, interviewing real users, and avoiding any suggestions that could meddle with their answers. All this helps us identify trends and topics important for the next round of validation. 

Stage 4: Market Introduction and Iteration 

  • Launching an MVP: After refining the prototype based on user feedback, we launch a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) to gather real-world usage data. The MVP is launched to a select audience, to confirm our assumptions and understand which features are valuable to our clients’ users. This phase enhances the future product development, in line with user needs and market demand. 
  • Iterative Development: Based on the post-MVP feedback, we keep finetuning and improving the product, until we’ve developed the final version that satisfies all the user and stakeholder requirements. 

The BrightMarbles Advantage 

  • Speed and Agility: Unlike large, slow organizations, our team’s agility yields quick decision-making and rapid development cycles, so that your product reaches the market on time.  
  • Collaborative Culture: We nurture a collaborative environment where inter-connected teams work closely with clients. Transparent communication, effective collaboration, and a shared vision are the pillars of our project lifecycle. 
  • Risk Mitigation: Our structured approach described above, and immaculate validation techniques minimize common pitfalls in product development. So, don’t worry about becoming another broken tech dream (like 3D TV-sets or Google Glass below) but talk to us and see how we can validate, build, and deliver your digital product. 

BM Insight: Under our roof, MVP development is a serious process. Each of the BrightMarbles pros is here to grasp the unique touch of every startup that knocks on our door. Apart from the speckless ©BrightMarbles quality assurance and bug-free code, we guarantee optimal user experience even at this stage. Our videographers, UI/UX designers, and product designers ensure smooth user experience. Learn more about it in the article UX Design: The Binding Tissue Between People and Technology, written by our all-round designer and videographer Marko Vladušić. Once the first version of the MVP is ready, we’ll keep improving it as we collect user feedback, until it’s ready for the big launch.  

The Curious Cases of 3D TV-Sets, Google Glass, and VR 

Even if your idea has been successfully validated, don’t look at that product through rose-tinted glasses because product idea validation is only the beginning. Bear in mind that some types of products keep emerging and vanishing from the market for decades even if there’s a clear market slot.  

3D Movies as an Office Bomb 

For instance, 3D movies were a big deal in the early 2010s. The breakthrough of Avatar seemed to have opened the funnel for 3D-enhanced TV-sets, so all the relevant manufacturers jumped on the caravan, hoping to push another tech frontier. They were offering this technology as a USP, increasing the prices, and creating a feeling of urge.  

Still, by the beginning of the 2020s, people’s interest in watching 3D movies at home completely waned. Even though 3D movies are still a big thing in movie theaters, TV-sets with 3D technology don’t make a difference anymore.  

This is a valuable example because it used to rely on both advanced software technology and hardware – the TV-set and 3D glasses. In other words, engineers developed a solution that needed a tangible product to work properly.  

Closely related, ten years ago, we thought that VR-headsets would become part of every household within a decade’s time. Although this tech trend hasn’t completely died, its tech progress and consumption are much weaker than expected.  

As we don’t expect a lack of product idea validation from big shots, their failures seem more shocking than when a small-app owner goes bankrupt. 

Google Glass and Meta Going Down 

Do you remember Google Glass? Announced in 2013 as a game-changer for everyday life and various business purposes – medicine, eCommerce, gaming, to name a few – it hadn’t met the market expectations; hence, in 2017, Google rebranded it as Glass Enterprise and started selling it only to companies. Last March, however, the production of Google Glass Enterprise officially ended

Another example of improper idea validation is Zuckerberg’s Metaverse. In 2021, when we were all affected by the COVID pandemic, The Facebook Company revealed the two grand decisions. The first was that it would be rebranded and renamed Meta Company, and the second was that they would launch Metaverse – a special digital environment where people would immerse in a cyberworld completely based on virtual reality. A few months ago, Meta terminated the Metaverse project.  

BM Insight: The BrightMarbles IT crew is here to take your digital product idea by hand and guide it through the murky business waters. Every single Mibster, from the C-suite to junior positions has been carefully selected from dozens of candidates to fit the right position. We apply this people-first approach to both our employees and clients. It is our workers’ and managers’ expertise and experience that allow us for such a business policy. In his interview for the company blog, our CEO Boris Berat explains various secret business ingredients that we bring to the table, making sure that every smart idea is properly analyzed, validated, and applied. 

Digital Products Validated and Built by our Think Tank 

Let’s now illustrate all we said above with an exquisite example from our software production:  

One of our make-this-world-better projects is Carna Health – a digital platform for the early detection of chronic kidney disease (CKD) that tracks the progression of the disease over a longer time. It either directs people to routine checkups, or specialist nephrologist care, with the aim of reducing the need for dialysis and kidney transplantation.  

In cooperation with the Ministry of Health of Bermuda, Bermuda Diabetes Association, Kidney Care Bermuda & Bermuda Home Dialysis Services LTD, Carna Health and BMGH have recently launched the initial CKD screenings and already received positive feedback from the patients and doctors. The first tested person was Kim Wilson, the minister of health of Bermuda. 

“Innovating in the healthcare sector brings its own set of challenges, but the prospect of revolutionizing patient care and convenience propelled our collaborative efforts with Carna Health.” – Boris Berat, CEO at BrightMarbles Group   

How Does Carna Health Work? 

The Carna Health platform offers two vital kidney function tests:  

  1. Creatinine and eGFR Measurement – determined from a mere finger-prick blood sample. 
  1. Urine Albumin-Creatinine Ratio (UACR) – obtained from a standard urine sample. 

As the patient completes the blood sampling, they insert the strip into the Carna Health compact reader and get their results on the spot. They can send them over to the clinical team in real time to get instant assistance.  

Within the Carna Kidney Health Solution, CE-cleared and clinical-grade medical devices are connected to the Carn Health Platform. The latter consists of the Carna Physician Portal (doctor’s side) and the Carna Patient App (patient’s side).  

As the results are obtained on the testing spot, they’re sent to the database on the Carna Health platform, where each patient has their profile with stored results. Doctors with granted access to the portal can read and interpret results and help patients in need.  

The Carna Platform simplifies data collection through both manual data entry and seamless connectivity with a range of medical devices, from measuring capillary blood creatinine, blood pressure, and eGFR levels, to providing electrolyte meter and glucose meter. Integrating these devices and processing real-time data visualization ensure that patients receive proper care and monitoring from their clinicians. To top it off, the patient data is secure and adequately protected all the way.  

As doctors are notified on patient information, they review the inputs and answer those in need immediately. The Carna Health platform that way seals the physical and temporal gap between patients and medical teams.  


If you have a digital product idea that you believe is worth giving a try, make sure to take all the initial steps explained above. Doing it on your own is legit; having someone to give you an extra hand is even better. 

Contemplating, validating, developing, and designing your digital product is easier with our experienced, far-sighted engineers and project managers by your side. We’re neither magicians nor shamans and everything we do is deeply rooted in our technical knowledge, QA expertise, and latest marketing innovations.  

Get in touch with us to talk about your software product ideas, whether you’ve already validated them, or you need some help during the validation process – we’ll cover every single bit of the way. Let’s Talk About Your Vision | Contact us | BrightMarbles  

About Author 

Pavle Bobic is a resident content marketing strategist and business writer at BrightMarbles Group Holding. A long-term holder of master’s degree in the English language and literature and once-teacher, he has been producing content in biztech, IT, fintech and eCommerce since 2013. His expertise drills deep into the correlations between information technology, business development, and financial technology, with a pinch of SEO on the top.