Aishah Mustapha
Aishah Mustapha Content Marketer at

How do you test a business idea to know if it's viable?

For those starting a business, one of the most important thingsĀ is coming up with a product or service that people need or want. Unfortunately, this is not as easy as it sounds. If I've got a business idea, what's the best way to validate the idea aside from:

  1. Googling, which may not be accurate or comprehensive
  2. Asking family or friends, who may not tell the truth

Top voted answer
Quentin Aisbett

Quentin Aisbett, Founder at

I love using Google Adwords. Send people to a basic landing page asking for their email. If you can't get people to click on your ads and leave their email, then you may be up against it.

Aishah Mustapha

Aishah Mustapha, Content Marketer at

That's a great idea actually. Although I'd have to spend money, it would be worth it just to know if it is something people want. Because spending money and time making something not many people would buy would be more disastrous!

Greg Rogers

Greg Rogers, Founder and CEO at

'Success leaves clues'

Hi Aishah,

My two cents worth.

Googling is a 50/50 bet on anything. Pick something obscure as you want and you will be able to find data on Google that supports both sides.

Plus, is Google your ideal customer, your avatar? If not, don't go there.

Family and friends can be ok if they fit the above, are they in your niche? If so they may have valid information and feedback, if not, I agree no point in asking them.

Is someone else in the market doing what you are going to do or are they approximating it? If so, ask their customers or be as bold as to ask them.

Hang out where your potential end users/customers are likely to be, and ask them direct.

A FB poll in the right group/page/community is a no cost, very quick response way of gauging interest in an idea.

But the very first validation and this time it's ok to use google. Google Simon Sinek and watch his Golden Circle video clip.

If you have come up with a product/service/solution and you are coming from the what and the how, that's tough. If you know your why though, then that's a complete different story.

Get that right and you will be surprised how much everything else starts to fall into place.

To your business growth and all the best.


Alan Daniel

Alan Daniel

This is very straight to the point! Good post.

Alan Daniel

Alan Daniel

1. First what is the business? Is it something like Uber where you're making the experience much better?

2. Is it something like Tesla or SpaceX where it is a much larger ambition?

3. Is it something like Juicero? Where it's seems like it would be a nice to have?

4. Is it a fashion brand?

Depending on what you are doing you can go with the lean model or you can actually grow it from the ground up bit by bit reaching your audience slowly.

You could also go with kickstarter/indiegogo and see if people will buy.

It always helps to have more specific information to be able to answer the question much better.



Zivit Inbar

Zivit Inbar, Owner / Director at

Hi Aishah,

The best way to validate your idea is with your potential market.

Think about who will need your product and will be willing to pay for it. Make a list of people from your network and meet with them and interview them about their pains and see if your idea can solve their pains. Understand from them more about their needs.

There is a lot of materials about how to approach the market online- you may want to look at the business canvas and read more about it. Alternatively, join a pre-accelerator.

Kind regards


Brad Lyons

Brad Lyons, Consultant at

You have it right. Google.

Don't just type in Google your idea in your words, try other variations. Similar ideas or products and see how they track. 

Reality is, Google has made life a lot easier when it comes to researching ideas. So it is the logical first place you would go. 

Biggest issue is most people don't know how to use Google to it's full potential. Typing in a persons name is not how you search for them on Google. 

Here is a video I made on using Google for skip tracing. The first 10 minutes should be enough to show you some ways to research your ideas a little better.

Family and friends could give you a bias opinion. Google will tell you from a Global scale what interest there is out there. Google will not say it is a Good or Bad idea. It will give you the data so you can make that assessment yourself. So yes, Google it. After you have done that and you believe it is a viable product. Then look at drafting a business plan and continue to research as you go. 

Brad Lyons

Brad Lyons, Consultant at

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