Checklist for Successful Products

Written by Theresa Shafer. Posted in checklist, Rules of Thumb, Tools for Startups, tshafer

checklistThere are broadly three categories of challenges a new product must address: it has to be feasible, it has to be desirable and it has to be profitable. Below is a simple checklist to help you evaluate product ideas.


  • Can your product be built?
  • What kind of skills are required to build it?
  • How much will it cost?
  • How can you build a prototype using existing products?
  • What are the product development risks?
  • How much time will it take to develop the product?
  • Where are the schedule, cost & feature tradeoffs?
  • What are the key feasibility risks?


  • How have customers solved the problem today?
  • What are you replacing?
  • What do people like about the current solutions?
  • What do they not like about the current solutions?
  • How much money will they spend?
  • How often will they use it?
  • What do people say about your prototype?
  • Will people pay to learn more about the problem?
  • How many have to adopt it?
  • What are the key questions that you have to answer to determine how desirable the product is for your target customer?


  • How much will it cost to develop it?
  • How much will it cost to market it?
  • How much will customers spend?
  • Do you understand your cost drivers?
  • Is it a one time purchase or recurring expense?
  • What is the smallest “getting started” price?
  • Is there a small market that will accept a higher price point that you can use to debug your product?
  • What are the key profitability risks?

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