How’s it going, product people? I hope everything is fantastic and smooth.

Let’s get going to learn; what the product roadmap is and how you can build
it for your app development team?

There is no easier way to understand it than taking a reference to a practical
situation. I mean, assume a situation like this – you decide to go on a trip
or any destination of your choice.

What do you do?

You make a plan or develop a strategy and follow it.


Because that’s what you desire and want to reach your destination on schedule
without wasting much of your resources. Right?

Hence, that “plan” or a “way” or a “strategy” is the product roadmap that
gives you the results you asked for.

Let’s extend the above situation and understand it more clearly.

So, the options are many in a roadmap to reach your favorite product
destination for a memorable trip.

For instance, if you want to go to Washington DC from New York, there
are many ways – a single car navigating a lonely highway, following a group of
bikes, airways, boats, mopeds, and even trucks. And the one with the least
overall cost, time, and high safety, you go by that because that’s the
practical way to save more and have a lot of fun without big blunders.

Similarly, suppose you’re into business (especially budding startups and small
businesses) and want to achieve the desired success without losing much of
what you have. In that case, you need a robust roadmap to build and commercialize a product in the world market successfully.

A product roadmap is necessary and the backbone of every great team of
developers because it’s the best source of truth that guides everyone – from
software engineers/developers to stakeholders – where they’re going and why
they’re going that way.

What is a product roadmap? What is the goal of a roadmap? What is a roadmap
for? And what belongs on the roadmap?

So let’s answer those questions and tackle this topic.

But before we get any further into this blog post, let’s have a look at what
else this article includes –

  • What are product development and product roadmap?
  • Types of product roadmaps
  • Is a product roadmap necessary for product development?
  • What is the app development process?
  • The relationship between product roadmap and app development
  • Six easy steps to create a robust product roadmap for app development
  • Product or app development examples
  • What value will your product bring to the market?
  • How does the product roadmap affect user experience?
  • Best free product roadmap-building tools.

What are Product Development and Product Roadmap?

A product roadmap is a high-level visual summary that maps out the vision and
direction of your product’s offering over time. It communicates what you’re
building and, more importantly, why your product roadmap has several

In general, a product roadmap has five things to do –

  • To describe the product strategy and vision
  • It has to act as a guiding document on how you’ll execute that strategy and vision.
  • A product roadmap works to get alignment from your stakeholders.
  • It facilitates a conversation around scenario planning.
  • A good roadmap communicates with your external stakeholders and your customers.

So the goal of the roadmap is to describe, guide, align, facilitate, and
communicate. And its primary purpose is to make things easier to understand
for the stakeholders and the development team.

But remember, your product roadmap is not a list of features. It’s not
a product management tracker, especially not a backlog. That’s because they’re
all missing this key ingredient, and that’s the strategy to develop a product
roadmap – mention the factors that directly affect the overall product.

Now that you know a product roadmap and what it does. Let’s
know; what is product development?

The product development process may seem mysterious, but it simply refers to
making a product and taking it successfully to its market.

Additionally, it covers –

  • Renewing the current product,
  • Putting an old product in a new market,
  • Identifying what market needs,
  • Putting a lot of thought into conceptualizing the product,
  • Building a roadmap for the product, and
  • Finally, launching the product and gathering broad audience feedback.

Note: This process never ends; it isn’t over until the product life
cycle is over. You must continuously collect the users’ feedback and
perform iterations on new product versions to enhance them by adding new

On the one hand, a product roadmap guides engineers, developers, and the sales
team. Product development is a vast and complete process – for an early-stage
business or an established corporation – that brings together every internal
team/department – UI/UX design, engineering/ software development, product
marketing, manufacturing, etc.

Each team plays an essential part, from design and build to testing and
delivering the working product.

Till now, I hope you’re with me.

So, let’s see the ‌different types of roadmaps.

Types of Product Roadmaps

There are two categories of product roadmaps, and based on their use, they are
further explained.

The two broad categories are –

  • Internal roadmaps, and
  • External roadmaps.

The internal roadmaps are in concern for

  • Internal development team – This roadmap is mainly about sprints that
    enable the agile development team to get accurate task areas while defining
    the bottlenecks within a specific time frame. It is also a document that sets
    the priorities of value delivered to customers, finite product release dates,
    and milestones achieved.

  • Internal product management team – This roadmap focuses on the company’s
    KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and how well a business achieves its high-
    level objectives. You can easily organize this document within a month or
    quarter timescale since it mainly includes fewer details on the development
    process. And allows you to forecast a product’s global progress.

  • Internal sales team – Such a roadmap is always about new opportunities and
    providing a better customer product value proposition. This roadmap is
    suitable for presenting to your dedicated audience during a marketing
    campaign, which results in helping you increase engagement and boost sales.

  • External roadmaps– These roadmaps are perfect for including features in a product based on
    customers’ feedback on new product releases.

The only thing you need to keep in mind is that it is eye-catchy/visually
appealing, uncomplicated, and straightforward to read. Because it helps you
get your customers/users engaged in your product’s future and its overall

It’s all you would need to know regarding roadmaps, but is it all necessary?

Let’s see!

Is a Product Roadmap Necessary for Product Development?

The straight answer is a big yes!

Because your product roadmap is the strategic document to communicate visually
your product’s vision and your product portfolio with a dedicated target
audience, stakeholders, and cross-collaborators.

A single source of truth – a product roadmap – should have themes, epic
stories, and eye-catchy features.

The beauty of a product roadmap is that you can create a portfolio view and
then create different roadmaps for different product lines or depending on who
your viewer is. –

It would help if you made the roadmap with a viewer in mind.

So let’s quickly see the various stakeholders you might be presenting to on
your executive-level roadmap.

You would want to focus on high-level concepts like –

  • Customer satisfaction growth
  • Newmarket penetration
  • Churn anything that communicates how your product is connected to business goals
  • Outcomes.

This is usually a more comprehensive roadmap than your engineering roadmap. An
engineering roadmap is much more granular in scope. You want to be as
transparent as possible on the engineering roadmap.

So it includes things such as –

  • Release dates
  • Features
  • Sprints
  • Milestones on your sales roadmap.

But you would want to exclude release dates. Because this is a document that
the sales team uses with prospects when they communicate the benefits of
what’s coming down the pipeline with your product.

And then last, you have your external roadmap. And this one should be as
visual as possible because people want to know what you’re doing later down
the line.

Now, you clearly understand what a roadmap is and how it is way different from
product development.

Let’s dive into the typical process of app development.

What is the App Development Process?

Developing or creating mobile and desktop apps refers to building software
applications intended to run on smartphones or mobile devices to ease daily
business operations. They are optimized so that people can take advantage of
their unique features and associated hardware.

There are three broad areas in which the app development process is

  • Development of Native apps,
  • Developing hybrid apps, and
  • The development of apps based on HTML5 (for trendy websites and progressive web apps).

Moreover, the world market for the development of mobile apps is set to grow
to nearly $693 billion by the end of 2022. It’s because of the exploding
popularity of tablets and mobile phones. And because the number of smartphone
users is so high worldwide and tech consumers are detaching themselves from
desktops, mobile app development is at its peak and is an increasingly popular
medium for developing software.

So, here is the simple and easy step-by-step app development process to
employ –

The First Contact – Once you get the client’s request, make the first
contact to hear their inspiring idea and ask them for a product requirement
document so that you can make your team ready to land your client’s dream into

The Discovery Phase – When you are all in with the product requirement
document and your team is ready to work on it, then comes this discovery phase
in which you do research and analysis, getting your team to know the client’s
needs and simultaneously begin the wireframing for the app with the help of
UI/UX design team.

UI/UX Design – The moment wireframes are ready, begin designing trending
user personas for the mobile app/web app. And once the designs are prepared,
put mockups and prototypes of the plans before clients for approval.

Kick-Start Software Development – Once the development team is aware of
the app’s inspiration, idea, and vision, break down the mobile app project
into chunks (small incremental builds) using agile methodology – Sprints,
conduct 1:1 meetings with clients at least twice per two weeks to avoid miss-
happenings. You can also employ Jira (a robust project management tool) to
manage the whole app development process.

User Acceptance Testing (UAT) and Q/A – Every company from any industry
employs this step to check the quality of the developed product thoroughly and
test it before officially launching it on an App Store for people, which comes
in Q/A testing. And it also makes the app stable, usable, and secure since you
will have the user feedback once you make it available for a few people (it
comes under UAT).

Official Release of the Product – Now that you’re all set with an app,
it’s time to launch it on an App Store for all users to download, install, and
start using.

But remember, just providing an app is not the end of the app
development process. You have to keep the Post Development Support in mind and
make it available once the app is live on an App Store.

And instead of making it someone else’s job, take full responsibility so that
your client’s app successfully reaches its audience and simplifies their
lives. Besides that, focus on helping your customers with app maintenance and
other activities whenever a need knocks on your doors.

And if you keep the above steps in mind, creating a one-of-a-kind mobile app
(or an MVP, a minimum viable product with essential features to test your idea
and inspiration in the market) at an optimal cost is possible within a defined

And if you can integrate the product roadmap with the app development process,
boom! You’re unstoppable since it will help your dev team guide what is
required and how they can achieve it in no time.

So, let’s go ahead and know it.


The Relationship between Product Roadmap and App Development

When you are into developing a mobile app from scratch, it has its specific
pitfalls. And you inevitably encounter issues of converting the initial idea
into a working strategy.

Also, the app development process deals with multiple iterations. And that’s
why a product roadmap for developing mobile apps is crucial and plays a vital
role in the result will look like – Yes! Because of the user experiences.

And we have already learned that the product development roadmap is a
strategic and dynamic document (that is, easy to follow and flexible to edit
kind of roadmap) that guides the development plan for your product.

Hence, a product roadmap for mobile app development serves various
functions –

  • Facilitating work on a product internally – A mobile app development roadmap is like a bridge between the inspiration of building an app and desired business goals.
  • Helps in streamlining and establishing effective communication with external stakeholders.
  • A product roadmap easily relates to all investors, contractors, and end-users.
  • It allows you to have info on changes and advances of the product in line with market needs. `
  • A comprehensive app development helps you prioritize dedicated development units and defined deadlines.

A clearly and accurately compiled product development roadmap is necessary for
the navigation of the product development process by enabling you to focus on
short, medium, and long-term goals, what features of the app should be in
priority, and how to go around managing stakeholders’ expectations while
working on the project.

Six Easy Steps to create a Robust Product Roadmap for App Development

Easy Steps to create a Robust Product Roadmap for App Development

1. Putting a lot of thought into idea generation

When you see a lot of ideas and competition in the same niche, you get worried

  • how will I come up with something that will run in the market?

Well! Yes, there will always be copy-cat ideas, but a slight difference in the
execution part and how you approach that idea of yours will allow you an edge
to make your way to developing the perfect product you should sell.

And if you still find it difficult and waiting for an aha moment, there are
You can explore a few websites to develop an original product idea.

You can use the following website for analyzing online markets and product
descriptions to get inspired and reinvent historical trends –

2. Performing extensive market research in Product Roadmap

Once you have invested a lot of brainstorming to develop a product idea, you
may quickly want to enter its production phase, but it will be a misstep if
you don’t validate it first.

And that’s because product validation allows you to create a product that
people love to have and pay for. Moreover, it results in no waste of time,
money, and effort on an idea that has little to no market.

Following are the ways you can use to validate your product ideas –

  • Let family and friends hear your opinion about the idea.
  • Put out an online survey using any third party to gather feedback from a substantial and unbiased audience vital to your idea – whether they would buy your product.
  • Begin a campaign to crowdfund the project.
  • Ask for more feedback using social media platforms like Reddit, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
  • Use Google Trends to perform market research to know the demand.
  • Launch page website spreading the message – Coming Soon to gauge people’s interest or do it via email opt-ins and pre-order options.
  • Invest in running a feasibility study or an assessment in which you can directly ask people whether it’s worth investing in your proposed idea.

Note: Product validation ensures you create a product people love to
have and are willing to pay for.

3. Effective Roadmap, planning, and prototyping

In the development process, the prototyping phase aims to help you put a
finished product on the desk to use as a sample for mass production. And
developing a product right from scratch can become complicated quickly. So,
it’s essential to think and take your time for planning before you push
yourself to build a prototype.

It’s easy to get lost in the approach if you don’t have a concrete idea of
designing your product and how it will function once built. In this case, the
best thing to do is to use a whiteboard or pen and paper to draw a rough but
detailed sketch (with labels explaining the various features and functions) of
your idea and observe how it will look and work if brought to life.

The drawing or the sketch does not have to be perfect since all it has to do
is to enable you to begin planning what you will require to develop the

Moreover, it’s doubtful you will have your finished product in the first
attempt because prototyping involves experimenting with various versions of
your product idea. And then gradually eliminate options that hinder its
development, and make necessary improvements based on some feedback until

Along with planning and prototyping, you’ll also need to start testing a
minimum viable product (MVP) at this stage of product development. The MVP is
a version of your product with essential features for early customers to use.
It helps generate feedback that you can use to validate a product concept in
time and make incremental improvements to the product to develop something
more valuable for your target market.

4. Excellent sourcing in Products

Once you have a product prototype you’re satisfied with, it’s time to gather
the technology stack and developers and secure the partners needed for its
development or production.

You can call this step – building your supply chain; since you need the front-
end and back-end software developers, UI/UX designers, engineers, marketers,
promotional activities, and other resources required to create a product that
goes to customers.

While investing in all such resources, sourcing several options creatively and
thoughtfully is an integral part of strategic thinking that safeguards your
business for the long term.

While you invest time and energy in the sourcing phase, you find yourself
stuck deciding whether to develop the product locally or overseas. Kindly
leave it to the client to determine (or invoke this thought to explain its
advantages and disadvantages while interacting). It is always good to put
these options before clients to choose accordingly.

For sourcing the production of your app and websites, you can approach any
mobile app development company from countries like India, Canada, UAE,
Singapore, Ukraine, etc. They will help you out with top-notch app
development at minimal costs .

Note: Each journey to a finished product is different during product

5. Estimating the involved costs in Product Roadmap

Once you’re over with the market research, product planning and prototyping,
and sourcing, the picture is clearer of what it will cost to give life to your
theoretical idea. Costing involves – information gathering about costs related
to required resources.

You can begin by creating an Excel Sheet/Spreadsheet. This sheet can include
all app development costs, including listing your app in an App Store.

6. In-time delivery and commercialization

Once you are all in with a profitable and successful product ready for the
world, the final step in the product roadmap is to introduce the developed and
tested product into the market and start implementing activities related to
its commercialization.

Don’t sweat it if you have no budget for expensive ads. Instead, run a
successful go-to-market strategy by using the following tactics –

  • Use social media to make people aware of your beautiful product and clearly explain what it does and how people can benefit from it.
  • Connect with working influencers by emailing about your product launch and investing in affiliate marketing campaigns.
  • Get your product featured on online video streaming sites like Vimeo, YouTube, Twitch, gift guides, and various other digital marketing means like enabling Instagram Shopping or Business, WhatsApp Business, etc., to run Chat Marketing campaigns. The best part of this kind of marketing is that you get quick reviews from early customers, so you have enough time and data to work on and then develop product changes. People love it.

Product or app development examples


From the dawn of mandatory degree courses, the education industry has gone
through many changes and come a long way to cater to propelling skill development
of individuals seeking to thrive, excel, and make a career out of the niche
they love.

You can easily comprehend it by Googling and observing the boom level they
have achieved recently. This industry’s estimated worldwide market value in
2030 will be about – US$ 10 trillion, growing at 4.5% CAGR and making up
over 6% of Gross World Product (GDP).

There is a massive possibility in this area to do business and help people
with solutions they need, from Digital Content Mobility, Test Preparation
Applications, Cloud-based Learning, and Management systems to Quizzing &
Brainstorming Apps, etc.

If you want to help, possibilities are abundant!

Following are glimpses of such works –

  • YouTube
  • Coursera
  • edX
  • Udemy
  • Simplilearn
  • Quickly
  • Byju’s
  • Skillshare
  • LinkedIn Learning
  • Pluralsight

And so on.

Food and Beverage

Food and beverage products. It is easy to start with and is an evergreen
business that you can begin developing at meager costs. You can even start
from the comfort of your own home!

And app development companies can help such people and businesses make an
impact like Zomato and Swiggy.

Media and Entertainment

Media and the entertainment industry are way bigger than you can ever imagine.
And the most mind-boggling part is that it is evolving like no other industry
and at a very rapid pace.

The app development solutions, distributors, media houses, the music industry,
and the game industry innovates day and night to convey unequaled amusement to

Moreover, the pandemic, Covid-19, has reaffirmed the inevitable change that
it’s bringing.

With a D2C (Direct to Consumer) model, you can offer your customers new
packages and conditions, from everything-you-can-eat access to any kind of
digital content.

For instance, The OTT platforms – Amazon Prime, Netflix,
Disney+Hotstar, etc.

Travel and Lifestyle

Thanks to internet connectivity and high-end intelligent devices, the last two
decades have completely overhauled the tourism, travel, and lifestyle industry. The people in the world are now more connected than ever before.

Easy-to-use options in mobile apps have made it easier for people to instantly
know anything about the world.

This effect of digitalization is evident everywhere, and travel and lifestyle
are no different. Technology has completely changed the world order, and
people are entering ‌the new world order that is tech-driven. Even physical
bookings at travel agencies are almost obsolete.

Hence, as an app development company, you can enrich people’s lives by
providing them with innovative travel or lifestyle apps and ideas to move
their experiences to a futuristic level.

Below are the features that you can count on to set a roadmap for a
successful app –

  • Intelligent booking system
  • In-app cab booking capabilities
  • Search engine optimization, i.e., specificity in everything
  • Geolocation functionality and associated features to explore the destination
  • Weather/climate forecasting
  • Streamlining of transactions, i.e., ease in making online payments
  • Amazing incentives and discounts
  • Social travel planning options
  • Trip reviews

And more such features.

Following are the apps that are making waves –

  • Wanderlog
  • Hotel Trivago
  • Skratch – Build your own Skratch map
  • Sygic Travel Maps Trip Planner
  • MakeMyTrip
  • Airbnb
  • TripAdvisor
  • TravelSpend: Track Travel Expenses & Trip Budget
  • Get the Flight Out
  • Yahoo! Weather
  • Swarm
  • Foursquare City Guide


As technology advances and the human population rises, healthcare needs better
solutions to tackle problems like the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

An app developed for users will help them effectively manage their medical
conditions, fitness goals, hospital visits, or even insurance claims.

Moreover, the pandemic has taught us how significant digital transformation

Following are a few examples of healthcare apps for you to get inspired –

  • Johns Hopkins ABX Guide
  • WebMD
  • UpToDate
  • Medscape MedPulse
  • First Derm
  • Zoc Doc
  • Doctor on Demand
  • Epocrates

What value will your product bring to the market?

Giving life to an idea that works is altogether different, and each journey or
our main topic of discussion – the roadmap in product development- is unique.
That’s how every industry/company/product makes its place in the market and
impacts human life.

And if you desire to figure it all out, remember each product (whether it’s
great or not) that you have used had to overcome some challenges that you may
never come to know.

But you can follow this article’s simple, easy-to-grasp step-by-step
methodology to implement the roadmap while undergoing the product development

You can break down the overwhelming task of bringing a new product to market
into more digestible phases, making mobile app development more accessible,
straightforward, user experience-oriented, and effective.

No matter what you’re creating, you can always set yourself up for a final
product that people embrace – by using all the preparation as needed—research,
plan, prototype, source, and cost.

How does the product roadmap affect user experience?

App developers and UI/UX designers should include factors determining how
features affect the user. A product roadmap always aligns with market
demands and new technological advancements. Hence, it affects the user

Most app publishers only include critical features and avoid those needed.

A product roadmap directly affects users’ behavior.

To understand it better, let’s say you know that an existing app will come up
with some significant updates or new features in a few days; then, you’re most
likely to buy that idea right away without blinking your eyes.

Also, when there is so much competition around every corner, creating a
roadmap based on your planned marketing activities and how you plan to take
advantage of user engagement is more than remarkable.

You can use the following aspects while creating a product roadmap that is UX

  • A rise in user engagement rate – If you can develop an app that users are
    eager to explore, keep up with the latest updates and changes, and would love
    to spread the word around, you have touched their nerves.

Note: Don’t worry about users coming from another platform, or they
wouldn’t give preference to your app. Instead, they will probably use your app
if you present them with a strong reason.

  • Increase in user retention rate – User retention is crucial to your app’s
    and your business’ success. Thus, creating a dynamic roadmap that favors users
    by availing new but lovable features, updates, or changes at certain intervals
    will make your users come back for more.

For example; let it be in the product or app description –

The app constantly evolves according to your needs – keep giving your love and
support. Extraordinary things are on the way!

The above quote has incredible chances to increase the user retention rate,
provided you give users what you say or promise. Users are savvy; never
underestimate them or understand them as a bunch of fools!

  • It saves money & provides better services – Suppose there’s no
    functionality in your app to upload images, photos, or videos directly from
    the device’s Gallery to any cloud service like Google Photos.

And, if you offer it in an easy-to-use service with some added features before
your competitors do, your users will love it and would like to have something

You have the upper hand over your competitors, and users will be happy that
you care about offering more than other apps.

But, never forget, competition is always healthy for mobile app developers.

Keep on building awesome apps!

Best free Product Roadmap-Building Tools

Building a product roadmap isn’t as easy as a YouTube video shows; instead,
it’s complicated and requires the experience of several individuals invested
in bringing an idea to its life, like Thomas Edison got the idea of the light
bulb to put household to live.

But as trends and technologies are expanding and industry leaders work towards
less human interference in making products, there are a few tools ‌ you can
implement to create a practical product roadmap.

Here are a few examples of the best free roadmap tools –

  • LoopedIn
  • ClickUp
  • StoriesOnBoard
  • Asana
  • Craftwork
  • Coda
  • Wrike

Now, I’m going to stop right there.

All the roadmap ideas I just discussed are enough to start your roadmap
journey. I hope you enjoyed this blog and would like to clear your doubts (if
any) from the FAQs mentioned below.

Product development FAQs

What is the product roadmap and development process?

The product roadmap refers to a dynamic document that guides developers and
other various stakeholders to develop a product that people love to buy.

In contrast, the development process is about a business organization’s step
to launching a finished product into the market.

The product can be a completely new introduction to an old one in the market
or renewing an old product.

How to generate new product ideas?

Below is the algorithm that you can use to come up with unique ideas –

  • Brainstorming exercises
  • Taking customer feedback/reviews
  • Analyze your competitors
  • survey your audience
  • Effective use of social media
  • Focus on B2B wholesale market
  • Test your hypothesis (Concept testing)
  • Read more online consumer trends

Product development and management are different and equally important
things and have other but essential functions to perform.

But for many teams, the line between product management and product
development can quickly become blurry.

Product management is all about managing the jobs or tasks assigned to
individuals. In contrast, product development is an engineers/developers
struggle with an extensive task list that is not prioritized by any strategic

What are the crucial stages in the app development process?

The essential app development stages involve –

  • First Contact; asking the client for the product requirement document
  • Discovery Phase; explore what requirements are
  • UI/UX Design; Start wireframing and designing
  • Software Development; assign tasks to developers using agile methodologies – sprints.
  • User Acceptance Testing (UAT) and Q/A; performing quality tests and asking users whether they like a specific feature
  • Official Release of the Product; officially publish the app on an app store, do ASO (App Store Optimization), marketing, and provide post-development support.


App Development Process

Product Roadmap

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