Many entrepreneurs believe that the hardest part of creating a start-up is either having the right idea or setting up the business; few actually think about the difficulties involved in manufacturing a product. Unless you have worked in the industry before, you are likely unfamiliar with the demands and challenges involved in manufacturing a product.
This guide is here to help start-ups learn what it takes to manufacture a product successfully.
Consult with an Expert
Before you begin manufacturing a product, you should consult with an individual who has relevant manufacturing and product development experience. No matter how much you know about the product or the business itself, you can always learn more about the best manufacturing processes. Consulting with an expert will help you learn the information you need to avoid potentially costly mistakes that can occur in a development process.
No matter how ingenious your idea might be, if you don’t find the right materials, it will likely remain an idea rather than evolve into a successful product. You need to spend time researching potential materials to discover which will be best suited to your product development. When you are researching materials, you must take the time to learn about the differences in a category of material. For example, rather than researching water-soluble polymers, you learn about Aquazol 5, Etox, and PEHMA to discover which would be best for your product. The reason that you need to be specific with your search is that the different materials within a category can vary greatly.
When you are researching materials, you need to pay attention to a variety of different factors. Firstly, of course, you will want to pay attention to price to ensure that the cost fits into your budget. You will also want to consider functionality to ensure the material can withstand the practical requirements. Next, you will want to consider its aesthetic qualities, how a material it looks and feels. This is important as your product should represent your brand image. You will also want to discover how sustainable and environmentally friendly the material is.
Whether you are looking for a supplier, manufacturer, or delivery team, you mustn’t accept the first quote you are given; you need to take time to shop around a bit. You should contact a few different people to compare and contrast quotations. Even if you do end up going with the first person you spoke with, at least you will have learned more about the marketplace.
Create a Prototype
When you are manufacturing anything, you need to make a prototype. It is easy for start-ups to underestimate the value of a prototype. After all, you have likely spend a lot of time planning and designing your product, so why would you need a prototype?
A prototype can alert you to issues and weaknesses you might never have imagined possible in the early product development stages. It is useful to run some tests on your prototype to understand better how it functions in different settings. You should complete a thorough review of your prototype before making a bulk order.