Building a Clear Roadmap for Your Digital Product

Building a Clear Roadmap for Your Digital Product

Andrej Perc
Andrej Perc Published 11. 03. 2024
Building a Clear Roadmap for Your Digital Product

You want to offer your users a great experience, but that digital piece of your customer journey is still missing. You know the future online solution will benefit your organization and users, but the path forward is uncertain. How will you move from the idea to a successful product?

The answer lies in a product roadmap.

According to Clayton Christensen, a professor at Harvard Business School, out of the 30,000 new products launched every year, an alarming 95% fail. That’s why a solid product roadmap is not just helpful but essential. It is a strategic guide detailing the route from conception to launch and beyond.

A bumpy road ahead

In Creatim, we have learned the importance of building a solid project roadmap the hard way. We were always proud of our capable engineers. However, as we moved on to design more complex solutions, the issues started arising, and they were seldom related to technical capabilities.

Yes, we delivered, but the road to the acceptance letter was bumpy. Vaguely defined goals and poor alignment frequently led to disputes with the client, scope went out of hand, and piles of unnecessary work resulted, usually at our expense.

Twenty years of product design, across various industries and client sizes, taught us that experienced designers and savvy developers are not enough to build a product. Especially in the client-development agency setting, success starts with:

  1. Clear project goals
  2. An elaborated roadmap
  3. Sound collaboration principles

If this foundation crumbles, the product development will be plagued with misunderstandings and unnecessary risks.

What is a product roadmap?

What is a mockup to user experience design is a product roadmap to a product vision. It aligns the product team's efforts, clarifies objectives, and sets measurable milestones for success. It evaluates assumptions and keeps the project moving in the right direction.

A product roadmap can comprise many topics, depending on the product's nature. It is an actionable document that addresses business and technical challenges, but most should revolve around your user needs.

Depending on the discovery phase results, a roadmap document can take many forms. There is no firm structure to follow. In a client-agency setting, the project’s first goal is usually the minimal viable product (MVP).

However, the roadmap should look beyond the initial release. As user feedback is collected, the product will be continually improved. Therefore, the client must own the roadmap document, even if it is initially drafted by the agency.

Start by establishing the product goals. Once the purpose of the future product is clearly defined, sit down with your team to debate the key questions:

  1. Who are our users, and what are their needs?
  2. What must we prioritize to offer them a great user experience?
  3. Are there any untapped opportunities to increase revenue?
  4. What are our major technical challenges?
  5. What are the stipulations for the MVP?
  6. What is our measure of success?

The value of the product roadmap is in the discourse. Encourage an open debate among the stakeholders to get feedback on your assumptions, discover new revenue opportunities, and build strategies to defy risks. When contemplating the challenges above, validate them by asking yourself:

  1. Are our expectations realistic?
  2. Is this roadmap aligned with our business goals?
  3. Is it technically feasible?
  4. Are we within our budget and timeframe?

Don't get stuck in a features trap; focus on your user needs instead. Start small, monitor responses, and evolve your product as traffic increases and real user response data starts to pour in.


A well-defined roadmap can be the difference between floundering and flourishing.

Creatim helps organizations create a solid roadmap that evaluates assumptions, and outlines each development phase so they can embark on this journey with confidence.

If you are about to chart your course in digital product design and feel you could use some support, why not join forces?