Important Factors to Keep in Mind When Designing a Product
Designing a product is a process that takes a long time. There are plenty of things to think about, especially when you’re creating a product from scratch. You have to consider its purpose and how it’s going to fulfill your customers’ needs. But, apart from the benefits it will provide your customers, you also need to think about how it factors into your business. It’s important to think about the design of the product in terms of how it’s going to be made, what it will cost you, and how it’s going to make you money. You have to get a good balance between different elements to design a product that will work for your business. Here are some of the factors you need to consider while designing the perfect product.
Balancing Form and Function
When designing a product, two of the most important things to think about are what it looks like and what it does. You want your product to look good so that it’s attractive to those who might buy it, but you also want to avoid putting aesthetics over the function of the product. If it looks good but doesn’t do the job it’s intended to, or doesn’t do it well, your product isn’t a success. You need to balance these things carefully to get them right. Function is the most important thing and, in some cases, form might not matter all that much.
Choosing the Right Materials
The materials that you use to make your product need to factor in for several reasons. The materials chosen affect multiple different things, including the cost of manufacturing and the durability of the product. When designing your product you will need to explore the range of materials available and understand the pros and cons of your options to choose the best ones. Every material should be considered, from the main parts of your product to the bits and pieces that hold everything together. Think about how materials go together too, as some materials might not pair well with others.
The process of manufacturing your products is another key factor to consider when designing a product. How easy is it to manufacture? Does it require bespoke techniques or materials? This post on PCB Assembly Guidelines for Trouble-Free Manufacturing discusses why product design needs to be production-friendly. The right design ensures that manufacturing is as efficient as possible, especially if the product will be mass-produced. Designers should understand how a product will be put together so that they can design a product that can be manufactured more easily.
Cost to Manufacture
How much it costs to manufacture something definitely needs to be taken into account when designing a product. Your product could look great and work well, but if it’s expensive to manufacture, you could find that you need to price it higher than your customers are comfortable paying. Costs always need to be factored in when designing a product, including choosing the materials and the methods of manufacture. If you don’t have a clear idea of the costs, you won’t know how much money you’ll potentially be able to make. Being very clear about all of the costs involved is essential.
Many products are put together from multiple modular parts. Both products as large as cars and as small as cell phones are pieced together from a number of different pieces. While some products are made as one single part, it’s likely you will need to consider how your product design might be broken down into multiple parts and how it will be put together. It can provide lots of benefits, ranging from saving money to making it possible to mix and match parts to create different products.
Modern businesses should be thinking about sustainability if they want to ensure their products are designed well. Not only is this important to make sure you can continue to make your products, but it also shows that you are taking a more eco-friendly approach to business. If you choose the wrong materials or manufacturing facilities, you could find that at some point there are supply problems or you can’t make your products due to other reasons. Choosing sustainable manufacturing methods and materials will help to ensure you are able to continue making your products. Additionally, it can be part of a commitment to being a green business that uses sustainable manufacturing.
If you’re designing a product, these key factors need to be part of the process so that your design is ready for prototyping and eventually manufacturing.