Coming up with good ideas for products that will sell can be difficult. There are some shortcuts to product design, however, which will help you move faster and come up with winning ideas.

Everyone wants to design the next big thing and make a lot of money, but the number of people who actually create a product that sells are few and far between. It isn’t as easy as it sounds to come up with a successful product, but there are a few methods that can help move you in the right direction.

Offer a Solution to a Problem

Everyone has problems and if you find one that many people have and offer them a solution, you could be very successful. It’s not hard to find out what types of issues people are facing if you just look at forums in your preferred niche. For example, if you want to help horse owners, you could look at horse forums and find the most commonly discussed problems. Before you start to create a solution, however, you will want to research other products on the market and evaluate if you can offer anything new.

Fix an Existing Product

There are plenty of excellent product ideas on the market these days, but in actuality, they just aren’t all that they could be. If you can improve on an existing product, you’ll have something new to offer a market that is already interested in buying.

Create a Package

In some cases, it’s all about packaging products that already exist. Creating a new product using several others is an excellent way to start out if you don’t have any ideas for a unique item. A good example of this would be a first aid kit, which organizes a variety of outside products into a package that will sell for considerably more. All you’ve done is repackage things to create a whole new product, but this can be a very good strategy and it works across a variety of niches.

Follow the Trends

New trends are constantly appearing and if you catch one early enough, you can make a business out of it and use the extreme popularity of the trend to earn more money. While these can be short-lived, it’s usually fairly easy to piggy-back off of a wave of interest. You can also arrange to market in different areas as the trend spreads to new countries.

Revive an Old Product

This is something that Hollywood does on a regular basis by remaking classic films and it works equally well in business. Take out an old product idea and brush it off, or redo an out of date product. A book, for example, may need to be updated with new content and a new cover, but then it could be a best seller once again. Keep an eye out for these opportunities, as they can be very good. Most older products already have a following, so you can build on that by offering those followers something new and interesting.

Brainstorm with Clients

Your customers probably know exactly what they would like from you, so it’s a good idea to ask them. In many cases, clients are more than happy to share what products they would like to see. If you are just starting out in business, ask the competitor’s clients what they would like to buy. Not only can they offer some excellent ideas to work with, you already have practically guaranteed sales once the product is ready

Find a New Market

You may find that your existing product actually does very well in another market. If you have focused on a very specific niche, or target market, consider trying a different group of clients. It’s very possible that you will be able to market it to an entirely different clientele, with minimal design changes. As an example, you might have a brush that you sell to cat owners, but you could also sell it to dog owners simply by changing the label. The same product could suddenly double sales.

Combine Two Products

A backpack and a water bottle can easily be combined into a backpack with a built in water bag, something that has already been done, of course, but is very effective. Take a look at your own products, as well as those popular on the market today and consider how you could combine two of them to create a better item that a client could purchase.

While all of these are good ways to design a new product, keep in mind that they can be used together to become even more effective. For example, you might combine two product ideas and then sell them to a whole new market. Or you could survey your clients and remake a product to suit their needs.

The trick to designing a successful product is to do something that is unique and better than the competition. Take the time to consider all your options, since it can be expensive to invest in a new product. Make sure it’s something that the market will want before beginning to develop something new.