What the heck is a Beta Launch, Anyway?
The A-B-C’s of a Beta Launch
If you’re familiar with the Greek alphabet, you’re first thoughts are probably, “Beta comes after Alpha”. You’re absolutely right, and this sequence holds true in the startup world. In the initial alpha phase, a product is tested internally. Family, friends and members within the company use the product or platform just as any external user would. This helps identify any major bugs or issues that can be solved before a public release. Once the team feels confident in their overall product, they can move it to beta phase. A beta launch can be “closed” (intended for a limited audience), or “open” (available to a larger audience). The type of beta launch a company opts for depends on the product and the user feedback they’re hoping to attain.
What Should you Expect from the Beta Launch
Is this your first time using a beta product? Probably not. But if it is…it’s not as scary as you may think. You should definitely expect to find a few minor issues with the product, because we are knowingly releasing an “imperfect” service. There is often a “Support” email option, where you can easily leave a comment or question. You are highly encouraged to share any bugs or issues you come across, even if they seem trivial. In doing so, you’re assisting the developers in identifying and addressing problems more rapidly than they could do themselves. The beta phase lasts as long as the company sees fit to alter their product and onboard new users.
Perfection is Overrated Right?
Wait a darn minute–isn’t it counterintuitive to release a product before it’s perfect? Not when real user insight is concerned. Public opinion highlights problems and missing l within a service. This feedback greatly assists a company in identifying the true product-market fit of what they’re offering. Alternately, paid user-testing can cost a company thousands of dollars and yield a fraction of the results. The benefits extend beyond saving money–the way a team thinks in beta is totally transformative. By dealing with actual users and approaching issues in small segments as they arise, our team can remain creative, nimble, and tolerant to necessary change.
Is the Beta Launch for you?
Using a Beta product is not for everyone. In fact, most people don’t qualify to be Beta users. A product in Beta is for early adopters, which is a unique group of people who are constantly the first to use new products. Early adopters accept and embrace the fact, that they may be using a product which is not yet perfected. They are ready to overlook imperfections and believe in the vision. They’re always eager to be the first among their friends to try the newest and latest gadgets. Furthermore, they are usually the ones who introduce their friends to new products and technologies.
If this describes you then BlackCommerce Beta is certainly for you. Beta users are eager to participate in the development of the product, regularly provide feedback, and enjoy watching the product evolve to become everything they wish for it to be. The satisfaction of participating in early stage development is what drives early adopters.
And now, onto the Beta launch plan.
Now that we’re in Beta, it will be open for everyone. However, we will only grant access to 10-20 new vendors users per day. You know that you’re an early adopter if waiting in line has never curbed your enthusiasm for the new and revolutionary.
The goal of Beta is to prepare the product for scale by making critical improvements and resolving any remaining bugs. If you’ll be our Beta user, you will see many changes during the first several months. We will be intently listening to your feedback and adjusting the features to make sure they are absolutely perfect.
Focus on Community
During Beta, we will also create a community of vendors, professionals and buyers who are eager to make their business efficient and profitable as possible. We will begin with our Facebook community group and share with you everything from cool articles to mockups and prototypes of upcoming features.
And now the dates…
We announce these dates with much trepidation, knowing the unpredictability of product launches. But if all goes according to plan, BlackCommerce officially will be launched on:
Drumroll…February 1st, 2017 @ 6AM (PST) / 9AM (EST)
Some of you have been asking us how much the service will cost. We promise you that you would be willing to pay more than what it’ll cost you. But just to satisfy your curiosity, the Beta experience is free.
Are you excited? Let’s get It !!