Identifying the real-world problems and fixing it is the core concept to build a successful startup. The next crucial step is to understand whether the problem is a major one or not.

People might use your products or services once or twice only if your startup idea solves a slight problem, not an essential one. It’s important to understand that your idea must solve a significant and critical issue the people face regularly.

To assess your idea, you should try to answer the following questions:
1. What are the pain points?
2. To whom are you solving it?
3. How are you trying to solve it?
4. Is anyone else doing it?
5. Can you do it differently from them?
6. Can you charge your customer?

Let’s clear all the doubts by taking OLA Cab examples that help the people by on-demand cab services.

1. Identification of pain points:

Lack of convenience: There was a lack of accessibility in arranging quality transportation on demand. It was such a difficult job to hire a cab to go anywhere before ola was founded in 2010.

Lack of standardization: There was no standard process to book a cab and no transparency in pricing. Cab drivers easily duped customers who were not familiar with the pricing.

Lack of safety and trust: The safety of customers was also a significant issue as it was hard to trust a driver you had never met before.

2. Who is your target audience?

The Target Audience of OLA is all Tier 1, Tier 2 city residents, employees, and visitors interested in valued and safe transport.

Related Article: How To Measure The Target Market Of Your Startup

3. How are you solving it?

● Standardization of service: OLA partnered with private car owners and drivers and built a platform that brings them together at one place to standardize the cab service.
● User experience: “Getting a car in under five minutes, getting into a car that is clean and the driver is courteous and being able to pay seamlessly for that ride and this experience should be across multiple modes of transport as different people prefer different modes of transport for different use cases. ”, says Bhavish Patil, founder & CEO of OLA cab
● Fair Pricing: OLA solved the problem of the unethical cab fares by charging customers through the app

4. Is anyone else doing it?

Uber, Shuttl, Meru, Didi, etc. are the top competitors that can threaten its market presence.

5. Can you do it differently?

There are multiple areas in which organizations can differentiate themselves from competitors and maintain competitive advantages. For example, it could be on the services Ola provides, superior technology they are using, their great user experiences, etc.

Differentiation
● Local Products: Ola has done a much better job of building a local product. Being more local fundamentally gives Ola a competitive advantage. For example, OLA launched OLA Auto in small cities to cater to the need of budget-friendly transport service
● Product Innovation: OLA has launched different products in a row like OLA Auto, OLA Bike, food delivery product (acquired Foodpanda), and OLA Electric to ensure that it is the first choice of its customers
● Technology: OLA made its app much smoother to work in a 2G network before the advent of 4G. OLA has recently acquired an artificial intelligence-based startup Pikup.ai to build futuristic mobility solutions for India

6. Can you charge from your customers? If yes, how much?

The OLA business model is relatively simple. Ola works with private partners who own cars and takes commissions from every trip that is sent to drivers.

I hope now you are aware of the importance of idea assessment and its procedure.

Related Article: How to Identify a Good Idea for Your Startup

You also need to understand the importance of interacting with stakeholders involved in your business idea (for example, in the case of OLA Cabs, stakeholders involved are people using cabs, cab drivers, cab operators, private car owners, etc.). It would help if you started interacting with stakeholders in your business and understanding their viewpoint linked to the issue you are solving. It will also serve as a good starting point to clarify the assumptions you are making about the business and quite possible that you may come across some other major problems during the interaction.

It is a highly recommended step as it will help you get more clarity on the following topics & assessments during the flow of this course and your startup journey.