The role of product design is complex; a successful product design can’t just be plucked from thin air, though it may have some beginnings in the imagination of the designer there is usually a more tangible issue that must first be explored.
If you’re looking for product design jobs be sure to research the field and make sure you have tonnes of experience before getting down to it.
5 Steps to Creating a Successful Product
Still worried? Here’s our 5 steps formula to design a successful product.
1. Providing a Solution
A well designed product is one that solves a problem for the user – however big or small.
For that reason, the design process should begin with that problem. Write it down, make it clear and concise.
The problem can be aesthetic or practical but it should solve a clear consumer need. A successful product will either provide an easier, faster, more affordable or more attractive solution to an old problem.
One of the problems every product designer will face is also how to overcome a competitive market, what is the unique selling point of this product going to be?
This should be decided early on.
2. Expanding on the Product Needs
Once the purpose of your product has been established, it’s time to take a deeper look at design specifications.
Produce a list of requirements, these essential features may include: the production cost to which it must stick, the retail price, the physical size, the durability (should it be waterproof?) and any materials from which it should be made.
Don’t forget that all products need to be aesthetically appealing to your target audience (obviously style is subjective) – this includes any packaging or wrapping that your product may require.
3. Ideas, Concepts, Design
With the requirements in place, your initial ideas generation can begin.
Get ready to start brainstorming and sketching. At this point drawings don’t need to be pretty, or accurate, but instead demonstrate rough concepts. You’ll need two or more good ideas to take forward to the next step – the concept design.
Here you will take initial sketches that bit further with computer-based 3D design that provide more accuracy and detail.
Finally a detailed design will be constructed of your chosen mock-up, this means starting to look at things in much more detail, with accurate technical drawings and diagrams.
You’ll also need to produce a 3D, physical prototype of your product for the testing process.
4. Testing Your Product
This stage of product design should not be overlooked, although the actual design process is complete you’ll need to test your product to check you don’t need to make changes.
The testing process needed depends on your product, it could need thorough health and safety examinations or it may simply require a focus group to use the products and discuss their opinions on how it works and what it’s like to look at and use.
A successful product design may have gone through the design process numerous times until it is just right. Perhaps your first design was not fast enough, light enough or appealing enough to the consumer.
5. Getting it made
The manufacturing process can also play a huge part in the success of a product.
As a designer you will be responsible for finding the right manufacturers and engineers to get the job done effectively, this means finding producers who can create your product on budget without a loss of quality.
Wanted to add something, do in the comments!