On web products you have to
- build and deploy fast
- Launch and measure and then…
- make better, faster business decisions
- move to the next iteration 🙂
This is exactly the circle of finding how to serve a need and what pain to heal through the web, of course as a web entrepreneur :). The higher the frequency is on this iterative circle of effort, the most likely is that, in time due, you will provide a solution that will be more and more aligned to what the market segment you are targeting needs. The most important though is to be able to understand the reasons -why- you do what you do in order to serve your audience.
When to pivot? Let’s see an example:
Flickr famously began as a feature of another product. Husband-and-wife development team Stewart Butterfield and Caterina Fake had created a photo sharing feature for another product they were working on, Game Neverending. Butterfield and Fake were old-school Web types. The kind with low Metafilter user numbers and WELL accounts.
And because they knew the Web so fluently, they soon realized that their real product wasn’t the game: It was this secondary feature, the ability to share photos online. This was 2003, and photo sharing was still very much a novel problem for people. Flickr was born.