It would be better if your product didn’t exist

It’s true.

No one wants to use your product, and it would be better if they didn’t have to. This is not just about crappy products, it’s about great ones too.

Using your product is a necessary evil, because a better way doesn’t exist yet.

It would be better if I didn’t have to use Google to look stuff up, I just had the information accessible in my brain already. It would be better if I didn’t have to use my phone to text, I could just communicate with my thoughts. It would be better if I didn’t have to use your website builder, I could just magically have the site of my dreams.

I’ve taken the title and most of these thoughts from this awesome Smashing Magazine article. I highly recommend reading it.

Maybe this thinking isn’t new, but it’s not how I think about building my product. I focus on designing great app building tools, and making sure there are enough features. I try to write clean code and design a sleek product, but what if I focused on getting out of the way instead?

Nobody wants to build an app, they want an app in the app store. I focus on making my tools great, but what if I focused on getting out of the way?

Instead of adding settings and features, I should focus on reducing complexity. I could reduce the amount of steps it takes to get an app into the app store. I could make it easier to add my plugins, use better default settings, and automatically compile the app.

I could help people use my product less, and get the same result.

Are you helping people use your product less?

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Posted by Scott

  1. hmm interesting view. Looking at your products from the other end. I personally tend to over complicate things. It sounds like a good idea to sometime try and simplify.


  2. If you are talking about crappy products, I’d understand. But why do the great ones have to be involved to? I totally understand your point in focusing on reducing complexity, most great products are done to reduce complexity. Is Google search difficult to use? no it isn’t. Does Google complicates our lives? It depends. Point is, it’s not about the product, it’s about the users using the product.


    1. That’s a good point Jeremiah, I suppose it would still be better if we could have instant access to information in our brains, so Google search wouldn’t have to exist, but that isn’t realistic. We certainly need some products in our lives, this post really just makes me try to humble myself when building a product and focus on simplicity.


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