How should a startup approach the creation of a minimum viable product if it lacks its own developers? Assembling an in-house development team can be too challenging for an early-stage company that’s only taking its first steps. Not to mention that this process is time-consuming and usually implies lots of additional costs. So, finding a decent partner to assist with building an MVP is a surefire alternative.
Below we list ten well-rated and reputable MVP development companies which provide services for startups, small businesses, and those in need of turnkey MVP teams. Plus, we give tips on how to choose the partner that’ll be most optimal for your project.
Picking an MVP Development Company: Main Requirements
What are the options for bringing your MVP ideas to life if your startup doesn’t have its own developers yet? Here are a few:
- hiring developers for a startup directly (will likely be a daunting and costly process);
- outsourcing MVP development to a skilled tech partner.
As you might have guessed, we’ll be discussing the last option, hiring a third party. And if you do decide to team up with dedicated developers, you’ll need a solid plan for choosing the right outsourcing partner. Below are the main factors you should consider as you sift through the list of possible MVP companies.
Experience and Portfolio Availability
Years of experience in the field can be a feasible argument when choosing in favor of a partner. How long has the team been on the market? The longer, the better their proven track record.
Furthermore, checking the trustworthiness of a company is one of the must-dos. For instance, the absence of relevant certification can be a warning sign to pay attention to. The same goes for browsing client reviews and testimonials that are up not only on the vendor’s website. Remember that requesting referrals is at your discretion.
In any scenario, a strong portfolio speaks better than words. Has the company successfully developed MVPs before? Make sure to browse the case studies and look into:
- the specific examples of projects the vendor has worked on (are any of them similar to yours?);
- which challenges they faced and how they were solved;
- what their previous clients managed to achieve as a result of the partnership (e.g., were there successful exits?).
Frankly, if a software development company for startups states that it works with a super broad, versatile, and extensive tech stack, this should actually cause doubt. What if the stack list runs on and on? Well, it may turn out that the company’s practical knowledge is mediocre, and they don’t specialize in anything in particular.
This can be a red flag as, ideally, a startup should be positive that their MVP will be handled by a tech partner that’s experienced enough and whose team is technically-savvy. That is, the team should have already invested much time in mastering the used programming languages and tools instead of learning on the go. Bottom line: look for vendors with a laser focus on several technologies to stay on the safe side.
Fair enough, the physical location of a partner organization is a secondary factor to consider. After the grand global changes that began in 2020, the massive shift to remote work and boosted digitalization processes have shown that geographic boundaries are somewhat smudged when it comes to outsourcing.
Nonetheless, a team's location may be something to keep in mind for several reasons. For starters, it’s worth noting that IT outsourcing models can differ by location. What does this imply? That you need to be aware of the peculiarities of doing business with a local company compared to finding a nearshore or offshore partner.
Every collaboration case is unique. Yet, if, for instance, having a shared time zone doesn’t matter to you that much, you may visibly cut costs by teaming up with a reliable MVP development company that’s overseas. Modern tools allow for flexibility and simple communication, so you may get hold of a better offer if you don’t limit your tech partner search only to your country. For example, European partners are noted for having a good command of English, so you don’t have to worry about language barriers.
Finding the happy middle ground in terms of team size can also be considered a best practice when choosing a startup software development company.
This may be obvious, but if the partner’s team is small (say, 20 people or less), your startup will likely be deprived of choice if any additional roles will be necessary somewhere down the line. An MVP is a project type that’s prone to iteration and change. So you need agility and room for maneuver, right?
On the contrary, large outsourcing companies (with hundreds of developers) may not only have higher rates but also might not give your startup the needed attention it needs. Why? One too often, they’re focused on the "bigger fish in the sea". For this reason, a team of around 50 to 80 people might be an optimal median.
On another note, you’d be surprised, but there are many companies with artificially inflated team sizes. There are cases when websites show "ghost" figures and fake people who aren’t really part of the team to create a semblance of activity. Looking through a company’s online presence beyond the official website can be a good way to get a better understanding of who they are and whether they’re a real thing or not. As such, you can check LinkedIn and other professional platforms.
Average Time for MVP Development
When we’re talking about creating an MVP, a timely product launch matters a lot. After all, there’s always a risk that someone else will put a similar solution up on the market before you. So, the average timeframe for delivering the product that the MVP development company claims is also important.
Surely, a lot depends on the complexity of the product as well as the overall requirements. Yet, when handled by a well-coordinated team, launching a clean-cut MVP can take about three months on average. Nevertheless, timely delivery on the vendor’s side is key, so make sure to safeguard yourself and specify the deadlines when signing a contract.
A startup’s budget usually isn’t limitless. Hence, you’d really want to get the most out of your collaboration in terms of cost-effectiveness. Sadly, the overall development cost is among the trickiest things to evaluate. Here’s what you should take into account when studying the quote from any MVP app development company you consider hiring.
Most quotes are calculated according to the number of specialists required for the project multiplied by their hourly rates. As we’ve already mentioned, the quotes may differ based on numerous factors such as:
- the specialists’ individual rates (can vary by level of expertise);
- the location of the vendor company;
- how quickly you want the project done;
- among others.
Say, you want to see the MVP live in two months instead of the three suggested in the quote. The vendor will add more specialists to shorten the delivery time, meaning the price will go up.
Optionals and Inclusions
The quotes provided by MVP companies may also range in price due to what is actually included in the contract. Here are just a few points to think about:
- Is the project discovery phase included or not? You can do research and move from proof of concept (POC) to planning on your own. Alternatively, your partner can give advice on how to bring the solution to life most optimally and help you prioritize features.
- Do you need third-party UX/UI designers? The price will differ if you have your own wireframes and mockups vs. if you’ll need external help for prototyping and designs.
Furthermore, keep an eye on the hidden costs. At times, vendors leave vital things for an MVP out-of-scope, which will mean additional upfront expenses. Giving you a simple example, Upsilon always includes Mixpanel or Amplitude integration in project estimates since having powerful startup analytics is among the "must-haves". We believe that not using such startup tools to track data is inexcusable if you’re building an MVP as they steer a company’s further decision-making.
Top 10 MVP Development Companies
Now that you have a better understanding of what to bear in mind when choosing a software development company for startups, here’s a list of ten partners you can consider for your MVP project.
Company location: Poland, Estonia, Brazil, USA, +4 countries
On the market since: 2012
Team size: 60+ people
Helping startups create MVPs and grow their products further is Upsilon’s specialty. The company has been around for over a decade, and throughout this time, it helped more than 25 products reach market success (some MVPs turned into 9-figure businesses!).
Being remote by design, Upsilon provides high-quality, customer-focused MVP development services for startups of any size at any stage. The major technologies in focus are Python and JS, in which the team has gained proven proficiency.
The team is made up of top talent and niche experts (each candidate is hand-picked very thoroughly). What is more, the MVP development company uses a sprint-based pricing model, meaning that the work of the dedicated team is agile and split into 2-week blocks, allowing for changes and quick iterations if required. Custom team composition is also possible.
On average, Upsilon delivers an MVP within three months. Notably, customers can make use of the trial period guarantee (that is, get their money back for the first sprint if the delivered work was unsatisfactory). Startups can also consider getting discounted rates for Upsilon’s tech services in exchange for equity.
Company location: Estonia
On the market since: 2014
Team size: 40+ people
This MVP app development company specializes in mobile and web applications. It has completed dozens of projects, serving clients in industries like real estate, e-learning, e-commerce, and others. DashBouquet’s broad technology stack includes React, .NET, Angular, React, Vue, Gatsby, Python, and others. The team offers a fixed price model for MVP projects and strives to deliver them in super short time frames if required (for instance, in as little as two weeks).
Company location: Ukraine, Poland, UK, USA
On the market since: 2013
Team size: 80+ people
Relevant is a remote-first company focusing on agile web and mobile application development. The tech stack includes JS, Java, and popular mobile app development frameworks. During the years of its existence, the provider has worked on more than 200 projects, helping small businesses and even Fortune 500 companies. Clients have the flexibility to choose a custom team size and collaboration duration.
4. Net Solutions
Company location: India, Canada, UK, USA
On the market since: 2000
Team size: 275+ people
Net Solutions has helped dozens of companies like Unilever and Mothercare with software development. The company provides consultations (from product analysis to marketing strategies) and develops mobile and web solutions. It leverages technologies like React Native and Flutter, Magento, Django, Python, PHP, Laravel, Symphony, .NET, C#, JS, and lots of others. The MVP cost and delivery time are estimated upon request.
Company location: Philippines, USA
On the market since: 2010
Team size: 100+ people
MVP.dev is one of the app development companies for startups that uses no-code tools for building applications. The company uses the code-free Bubble.io technology to build the applications (instead of taking the custom app development path) and helps with integrating popular services like SendGrid or Stripe, that’s among the best payment gateways. Working in fast one-week sprints, it brings apps to life in under 12 weeks on average. Plus, customers can benefit from their 7-day complete money-back guarantee.
6. UIG Studio
Company location: Poland, USA
On the market since: 2010
Team size: 20+ people
UIG Studio is one more company that helps startups and larger businesses develop MVPs or improve existing products. It highlights holistic designs and supports customers throughout the entire lifecycle, from prototyping to release. Mentioning the tech stack, it consists of Electron JS, ReactJS, React Native, and others.
Company location: Poland
On the market since: 2011
Team size: 350+ people
This MVP development company helps implement minimum viable products, and their services can be handy for networking companies. CodiLime assists clients throughout the entire journey, from planning and discovery to design and development. The company’s area of expertise is network infrastructure (planning, automation, testing, etc.), and Python, React, Go, Java, and Django are among their tech stack.
Company location: India, USA, Canada, +3 countries
On the market since: 2011
Team size: 1050+ people
Bacancy is a large MVP app development company that works with startups, small businesses, and large organizations. It can deliver a prototype for a mobile or web solution of the MVP in a couple of weeks, help with planning, forming a product strategy, and building the custom solution. The team’s average project development time takes six sprints, and the company offers clients a 15-day risk-free trial period. The used technology stack includes Ruby on Rails, JS, Laravel, Flutter, and others.
Company location: Poland
On the market since: 2010
Team size: 50+ people
Digiteum specializes in building digital systems for small and midsize businesses as well as large enterprises. The full-stack team can assist with custom software development (including web, mobile, cloud, and IoT). It uses modern technologies when bringing projects to life, such as React, AngularJS, .NET, Java, among others. On average, a team gets assigned to a new project as fast as one week. The MVP delivery time and rates can be requested individually.
Company location: Ukraine, Poland, USA
On the market since: 2010
Team size: 200+ people
Geniusee provides consultations and helps clients of various sizes develop digital products for both mobile and web. The average timeframe for the discovery phase is 2-3 weeks, whereas the team gets MVPs done in 2-3 months. The technology stack includes ReactJS, Vue.js, Kotlin, Python, Node.js, PHP, .NET, Java, and others.
Final Thoughts on Choosing MVP Companies
Finding a responsible outsourcing team to help bring your vision to life in the form of an MVP is tough. This has to be a partner with proven previous MVP development experience, a great web development team of qualified specialists, and someone who shares your views and understands your business goals.
A lot has to be taken into consideration, including flexibility, pricing, and delivery timeframes. But, at the end of the day, these people sort of become part of your team, so you’d want to have the freedom to brainstorm together, make amendments, and receive expert opinions. You need a team that’ll tick all the boxes.
Ideally, you should aim for a long-lasting partnership when hiring an MVP development company. What’ll happen after the MVP is launched? Even if your needs change as the startup and product grow bigger, you should be able to count on maintenance and other support from the partner when the product goes live (this implies bug fixes and other assistance). Moreover, if you’re comfortable enough with the collaboration, you can consider entrusting the vendor’s services for growth-stage startups to help you take your product to the next level.
We strive to build partnerships where great ideas and tech expertise go hand and hand. So don’t be shy to contact us, Upsilon will be thrilled to help you launch your product and scale it to success!