Normally when I had a good business idea I would madly rush out and buy the domain name, craft up a WordPress landing page from scratch and even register social handles — it was madness. It took me way too much time and also some money.
There’s a much better way to quickly test your ideas for free, in around 60 minutes. You don’t have to be a tech genius either. I’m going to take you through how to do it, step by step. So grab your best idea and let’s begin.
1. Create your basic logo
Once you’ve got a name for your business, head over to MyFonts.com. Type the name into the ‘Your Text’ field and adjust the size slider to about 20. Then find a font that you like. Once you’ve found a font you like, right click on the image and save it. Hey presto! You’ve got yourself a logo.
2. Find a background image
We’re going to create a landing page, so we need a nice background image. Head on over to Visual Hunt , browse around and download one of their free photos.
3. Create the first part of your landing page
Next head on over and sign up for a free account at Typeform. This is where the magic happens. Once you’ve signed up, create a new Typeform from scratch. Name it your business name, and then select the ‘Welcome Screen’. Add your logo image, and write your header and sub header copy. It’s very important that you let your potential customers know as much as you can about your new product or service. Write descriptive copy letting people know what the product or service is and how it will benefit them. For the call to action, it’s also great to add something exclusive sounding like ‘request an invite’.
4. Add your questions and email signup
This next step is super important, as it gives you a chance to learn a little bit about your potential customer and their needs. Rather than just adding a simple email subscription form I like to add 2–3 multiple choice questions. The multiple choice questions that are directly related to your business idea.
5. Design your landing page
Okay, once you’ve got the hard bit out of the way, it’s time to have some fun adding some polish to your landing page. Hit the ‘design’ tab and choose your colours, fonts and add your background image. With your background image, there is a setting where you can adjust the background opacity to make sure the copy is legible over the top.
Once you’ve finished designing your page, hit the share button in the menu and get your unique URL. If you want to change this URL this can be done in the settings panel, under ‘edit URL’. It’s best to have something that has the name of your business in it, like mine: https://book-a-brainstorm.typeform.com/to/SIBhWh.
6. Time to let people know!
Once you’ve got your landing page complete and your unique link it’s time to share it. I always reach out to my network first on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. If you have a reasonable network size, mine is around 1000 or so, you can usually drive some traffic to your page. Above and beyond your network you can target blogs that are specific to your idea. For example, I often post new ideas up to Designernews.co. What you’re aiming for is about 100 unique visitors to your site. It’s a small sample but it can give you an indication if you’re onto something. As well as your valuable data you have gotten from your multiple choice questions.
7. Analyse the results
I love this part. I always give myself a 24–48-hour window after I have shared the link on a number of channels. I then log into Typeform’s dashboard to see the data. Typeforms simple dashboard is great because it gives you all the key information you need. Like number of unique visitors, answers, and completion rate in a percentage.
You want to get yourself at least 100 unique visitors to your page to have a true indication. As far as an indication that you’re onto something, I would be aiming for a signup of above 30%.
So there you have it! A quick, free a relatively simple way to see if that business idea of yours has some interest. If the results are good I would definitely take it to next steps if they’re bad I would probably can the idea. You have to be brutal. And this simple method allows for fast, free testing of your ideas which is great.
Okay, it’s safe to say, no one wants to ‘book-a-brainstorm’ anytime soon! I tweeted, posted, and re-tweeted and re-posted the test site. I managed to get 39 people to visit the site. Not one person signed up. There are two things to be learnt here. One is, people have to be interested in the product or service first to click through. Secondly, once you have the person there, they have to want the service enough to sign up.