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A needle in a haystack — validating our dating software idea

The top cause of startup failure is “no market need”, based on CB Insights. Frequently, a group spends valued time, money and effort building the very least viable item (MVP) that is really so polished prior to it being also proven to potential users. They discharge it in order to find that wrong presumptions had been made in what they believe individuals want.

This will be a plan of Haystack, a part pro j ect by Jeremy (Developer) and I also (item Designer), and exactly how we tested our riskiest presumptions by placing our product right in front of genuine users as fast as possible. The software idea initially stemmed from Jeremy’s goal of gamifying the online dating sites experience and he started building an earlier model before we came across. In a great globe, we might been employed by together before Jeremy began making the application. But, into the course of around 3 months (outside of work hours), we produced few paper prototypes, talked with some individuals… and tossed when you look at the towel, effectively invalidating our app concept.

The problem with Tinder

Dating apps are much less efficient and enjoyable while they was previously. They’ve been a labor-intensive, uncertain means of seeking a relationship. It’s a true numbers game for males and a number of squandered time for ladies. Mirrored in SMH’s simply take on dating apps:

But while women have more matches, they don’t fundamentally enjoy an all-you-can-eat buffet of this many desirable mates. Men distribute more communications, to more possible lovers, but have a tendency to place in less work or are less focused on their matches. Females may feel flattered by the regularity of matches, however they may additionally feel disappointed whenever attempting to follow through while having deeper conversations.

Whenever Tinder first arrived on the scene, it didn’t feel just like a task. It absolutely was a great game and every match felt significant. But with time, Tinder along with other similarly dating that is labour-intensive have actually saturated industry.

The concept behind Haystack

just exactly just What Jeremy desired to capture ended up being the same excitement Tinder gave individuals whenever it arrived on the scene.

You begin by producing your pair of questions and responses, in a numerous option question structure, and personalise it.

You nevertheless swipe. But rather of faces, you swipe through a couple of 3–4 concerns created by other users.

To fit, you ought to get all the other person’s questions correct. Eg. In the event that individual writes a concern “Is climate modification real?” plus they just would you like to match with individuals whom select “No” — then this real question is wrong.

Although, they nevertheless have to accept to own a discussion to you. But you are automatically matched and are free to chat to each other if you get ALL the questions correct. This sort of match may be the needle when you look at the Haystack .

It might be harder for women become delivered a barrage of matches since their possible match could have to respond to their questions precisely to be viewed. Likewise, guys can’t simply anymore swipe like crazy.

At this stage, we came across at BlueChilli, a startup accelerator, where we worked with early phase startups on releasing their item. We chose to join forces because of this part task, Haystack, and Jess stepped into whilst the item designer.


A step was taken by us as well as detailed all the assumptions made on the application idea. We then plotted presumptions for a matrix from “Most assumed” to “Most risky”.

This permitted us to just just take presumptions which were into the top corner that is rightmany dangerous and a lot of thought) and validate them.

Consumer interviews and concept evaluation

We recruited individuals through buddies and buddies of buddies. Each session ended up being divided into two components: individual interviews about present relationship practices and individual assessment of our prototype.

Component 1: Consumer interviews

The objective of these questions that are exploratory to gain insights and discover possibilities in users present frustrations with current services and products. Our rough conversation guide included concerns like:

Component 2: User testing

Test that is objective users be ready to respond to numerous option concerns compiled by the individual they truly are wanting to match with, with all the likelihood of matching using them?

We offered an individual a deck of 10 “cards”, that have been paper prototypes, either a deck of most male or all feminine, predicated on their choice. We asked them to pick five out from the ten which they want to match with also to answer their concerns and tell them that there has to be at the least 3 out 5 concerns correct to be able anyone to accept or reject you as being a match. These were permitted to start to see the responses for the numerous choice concerns prior to making their option.

We asked participants concerns like: Why did you select these individuals for the “yes” heap?How did these folks ensure it is to your “no” heap?How do you discover this method?

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