You could spend $30k, $50k or even $100,000 developing the first version of your startup. Use our Smoke Test Toolkit to gain valuable insights before you build, so that you build the right product.
A startup smoke test helps you to test a product idea before you build it. By driving traffic to a website, and making the user think that the product actually exists, the smoke test is designed to determine conversion rates and buyer intent.
Even billion dollar startup ideas like Airbnb needed to be tested. Why?
Well, startup ideas are simply assumptions. If you spend all of your money and months of time developing a startup only to find out that your assumption was wrong you're in a very bad place.
Our toolkit helps you get your test up and running in 48 hours so that you can start testing your assumptions almost immediately.
This is more than a landing page or a 'coming soon' page. You get a micro website that looks like a real site. We want the user to think the product actually exists. We want to find out how many people will click the 'buy now' or 'get started' button. The micro website includes a home page, a pricing page and a lead capture page.
You get analytics showing the number of visits to your site, the number of people who clicked the call-to-action button and the number of people who registered their interest. These funnels start to paint a picture of buyer intent. Knowing conversion rates at this early stage will give you a good indication of how interested people are in purchasing what you paln to sell.
Analytics paint a great picture but you also get 100 video playbacks of users using your website. These are actual videos of users using your website. It's like watching over their shoulders while they use your website. The videos will help you understand what features people are most interested in and where non-converters drop off.
We've developed more than 20 startups, and spoken with over 500 startups in the past 5 years, which means we've seen and learned a lot. We'll share that knowledge and guide you from your initial assumption to taking the first steps in your startup journey.
Like any website, a smoke test needs traffic. You'll need to spend time trying to generate traffic from free sources, but we'll also help you decide which paid channels to use and we'll set the campaign up for you. We mostly use Google Adwords or Facebook Ads to drive traffic, but this could change depending on your concept and target audience.
We'll host your microsite for you, with the focus being on delivering a fast-loading website that provides great user experience while providing a cost effective environment which is perfectly suited to this type of website.
Imagine you want to build a startup that generates exercise programs for people based on their DNA. Your assumption is that fitness fanatics will jump at the opportunity to get a more scientific exercise program. But, will they pay the high price associated with the DNA test and the resulting exercise program?
Our smoke test will help us get better insights. We create the microsite in a way that it looks like the product is real. The website displays a price and a 'buy now' button. When clicking the 'buy now' button users are shown a message informing them that you are not quite ready to accept orders but if they leave their email address you'll let them know when they can purchase the product. You might also want to offer them a discount for leaving their email address.
We can target a specific market and drive traffic to the website. Our funnel analytics will show the number of visits to the site, the number of people who clicked 'buy' and the number of people who left their email address. Conversion rates will go a long way to determining if the market wants this product.
Plus, you can start to determine the cost to acquire a user. For example, lets say you spent $200 on Facebook adverts and you get 200 clicks to the website from this campaign. 10 people clicked 'buy now'. If these people followed through with their purchase and assuming your profit margin on each sale is $40 then things are looking good.
You are now getting signals to prove your initial assumptions.
Let's get started testing your startup ideas
The cost of the smoke test toolkit is $3,997 + GST. This excludes the cost of paid advertising, logo design and domain name.
The price includes:
This doesn't necessarily mean your idea is bad. It just means you'll need to do more research before building the actual product. If the results of your test are poor the best thing you can do is go out and have real conversations with your target audience (this is something you should be doing anyway, even with a smoke test).
You've taken a great first step and the positive signals might give you the push to invest in building your product. Success will be determined by the quality of the finished product, the service you provide, the cost of the product, the number of competitors in market or enterring the market. There are other factors too like timing, luck, your ability to perserve etc. Your success is up to you and the smoke test helps you start on the right path.
The test only works with a decent amount of traffic. We'll help you setup a Google Adwords or Facebook Ad for you, but you will need to be pro-active in this regard and make all efforts to get traffic to the site. Your efforts will center around getting traffic from 'free' sources. We'll give you some advice on how to do this.
You certainly can and Launch Lab can help with that. Running the smoke test reduces your risk and provides insights that will help you when you launch. However, if you feel you have enough success signals already, and have validated your idea, and want to push forward with development of the full product you certainly can.
No. We also recommend you speak to people in your target market. Determine if they have a problem that your product solves. If they do, how do they currently solve that problem. Determine if it is a big problem and if there are other solutions on the market. It's ok if there are. Just be aware of them.
This can happen where the product idea just isn't suitable for either of these channels. If this is the case we'll reduce the smoke test toolkit price, so that it excludes the ad component, and you'll need to determine other traffic sources (we can offer some advice in this regard).
The following items are not included in the $3,997:
A/B testing isn't included in the $3,997 but we can assist with this, and provide a cost, if you would like to run an A/B test. Please keep in mind that insights from A/B testing are only relevant with a significant amout of traffic. If traffic to the site is expected to have low statistical relevance then split testing is not encouraged.
Possibly, but the way we have designed our smoke test toolkit means it isn't going to work for every startup idea. Contact us and we'll discuss your idea with you. We'll tell you whether the smoke test is suitable for your idea or not.
50% deposit. 50% when the test starts.
Oh yes. You're planning to be a startup founder and so you will be heavily involved. While we'll drive some traffic to your website you will need to be driving traffic too. We'll provide guidance on how to do this.
We are web application developers in Sydney and Canberra. We develop startups for non-technical founders. We also advise on startup strategy and startup growth.
We've worked with more than 20 startups in Australia and have learned a significant amount about idea stage startups through our experience.