Whenever I see a startup offering two different products on their website I cringe. It’s so incredibly hard to make one product successful that having a second product means resources are going to be spread more thin. Personally, I’ve tried it three times and have failed all three times. Can it be done? Yes. Is it rare? Yes.
Here are a few thoughts on a second product:
- Whichever product pays the bills is going to get all the attention
- Having a second product is actually 10x more difficult that it appears
- Finding product / market fit still takes 12 – 24 months with the second product
- Micro apps that are a subset of the mothership’s functionality are fine as long as they share the same code base
- Building a successful second product suffers many of the same issues as being a part-time entrepreneur
- If it’s going to be done, consider having a separate, dedicated team of people and website devoted to the product
When the first product has plateaued or is in decline, a second product makes sense to try and start growing again. Regardless, startups should stay away from a second product as long as possible.
What else? What are some other thoughts on a startup having two products?