The Ultimate Guide to Digital Product Engineering 2024 - Pragmatyc - Digital Product Engineering | Enterprise Solutions

The Ultimate Guide to Digital Product Engineering 2024

11 Jun, 2024

Ever wondered how Netflix went from selling DVDs to becoming a multi-billion-dollar industry giant?

The answer, in simple words, would be digital product engineering and product modernization.

When the world was experiencing rapid digital growth, Reed Hastings, the founder of Netflix, launched a small digital product (a website) back in 1997. The business model was super basic: offering subscriptions to customers and delivering requested DVDs to their addresses.

And today, this OTT platform serves 247+ million paid subscribers.

Netflix is one of the pioneering examples of how digital product engineering and continuous development can transform your brand.

Additionally, the market value of digital product engineering services is expected to reach $1610.6 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 4.1%.

Given these numbers, ‘product development’ is the horse you should be betting on right now.

And to answer all your ‘What’s’ and ‘How’s’, we have created this ultimate digital product engineering guide. Dive right in!

What is Digital Product Engineering?

Just as the name suggests, Digital Product Engineering refers to the development and modernization of digital products with the help of advanced technology, user-based research, and IT components (hardware and software).

A few examples would be websites, apps, SaaS, databases, automation systems, etc.

There exists an entire digital product lifecycle that starts from the conception of the idea to its market release and then post-launch product management. 

Product engineering helps businesses develop digital products that cater to the pain points and requirements of their customers in an efficient and productive manner. This enhances the user experience and guarantees customer satisfaction, keeping businesses afloat in the ever-changing world of market trends and user bases.

Digital products aren’t just for your customers; you can even have them personalized for your employees for a smoother workflow and enhanced productivity.

The Global transformation of businesses with Digital Product Engineering!

Here’s a secret that a little bird told us about you: You skipped the introduction!

And if not….congratulations! You’re amongst the few with higher attention spans.

In the past few years, the average attention span has decreased at an exponential rate. The audience wants to avoid the clutter and focus on the necessary information in the quickest response time.

This fact is just one of the many examples of why your business needs to understand the audience’s requirements as relatively as possible.

Digital product engineering not only builds the value of your audience, but also helps you ride the growth engine systematically. 

Here are some stats from the industry itself:

  • Nearly 60% organizations leverage cloud-based product development for its enhanced adaptability.
  • Increased employee efficiency by a significant rate, thanks to digital product engineering solutions.
  • Up to 50% of organizations experience quicker product launches and improved marketing with effective digital engineering practices.

The rise of AI and automation unlocks the power of digital product engineering for all orbits of businesses. Especially, small and mid-sized companies can now leverage these advancements better than ever to stay competitive.

Phases of Digital Product Engineering: What will the best Product Development Services include?

Modern Digital Product Engineering Phases

Depending on the type of digital product you choose to develop and considering the business’s requirements, the product roadmap may vary. However, the basic phases that the product engineering journey goes through, more or less, stay the same.

If you look from the lenses of the waterfall model, the phases will have ideation, design research, prototyping, development, testing, deployment, maintenance, and more.

But with the Agile approach product development goes on at a smooth and faster pace, perfect for the 21st century. So here are the digital product engineering phases that we feel are a must-follow for the rapid development of any digital asset:

Ideation and Discovery

It all starts with a brilliant idea! But to check whether that “idea” is worth spending the company’s precious dollars on, you need to consult with experts.

Today ideas are a dime for a dozen. Not every idea will end up becoming a robust product, but every successfully developed product will originate from ideation. Thus you gotta put on your thinking cap for this one with a methodical approach. 

That is where most players make the first mistake, totally skipping the discovery phase. For a successful product you need to identify the core pain point and the most efficient way to address that pain point. Eventually, you have to figure out what precious value you are offering and precisely to whom. 

There are various other factors to work upon during this ideation period, right from the company’s vision, business model, product roadmap, go-to market strategy, and more. 

Visual and Technical Design

In the next phase, we bridge between raw ideas and a tangible product visualization.

The UX/UI design team focuses on crafting an intuitive and user-friendly interface. This translates into designing user flows, wireframes, and mockups that prioritize ease of use and a delightful user experience. In most cases the available user research can be leveraged for development, and once the initial product design is launched, you can collect real-time customer data and make changes on-the-go. 

While simultaneously, the technical team defines the technology stack that will power your product. 

It is also necessary to figure out how the technical elements will come together with the right frameworks and code sets. The architecture of your digital product is the body, without which the whole premise is nothing but a good dream. So, while engineering, the team consider factors like scalability, security, and performance. They ensure the chosen technology can support the product’s features not just at launch, but also during future growth.

It is advised to not focus excessively on designing and developing the perfect product, an MVP with basic functionalities and features is an ideal fit for the rapid market. 

MVP Development and Launch

Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is the stripped-down version that prioritizes core features to gather real-world user feedback. Launching the MVP quickly is meant to hit the market earliest, paving way for validation of the product’s core concept and identification of areas for improvement.

The traditional, waterfall approach to product development multiplies the risk of product failure owing to its reaching-your-audience-extremely-late nature just to kiss rejection. 

That is why having a raw and dirty prototype with basic functionality is rolled out to the target audience. This MVP Launch helps identify market response and product flaws without taking a bigger hit. 

Build-Measure-Learn Loop

Congratulations! The product is launched, and now you may sit back and count the dollar stacks. Right?

The product’s lifecycle does not end at its launch.

The Build-Measure-Learn loop embodies the core principles of Lean Startup methodology. It’s an iterative cycle that replaces the traditional linear product development approach. But this scope becomes 10x more advantageous with the flipped version: learn-measure-build loop. 

Here’s how it applies:

  • Learn: Instead of blindly building features, start by defining what you want to learn from this product iteration. What questions do you have about user behavior, market needs, or your initial assumptions? Based on your learning objectives, determine the success metrics that truly matter. Don’t get caught up in “feel-good” metrics that don’t reflect user value or business goals.
  • Measure: Now that you have a better understanding of what you want to track, craft user experiments or A/B tests to gather data relevant to your learning objectives and chosen metrics. Implement tools and analytics to capture user behaviour and measure your chosen metrics during the product rollout.
  • Build: Finally, become Bob the Builder without a doubt. Based on your learning objectives and chosen metrics, develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) that focuses on the core functionality needed to validate your hypotheses. Based on the learning from the “Measure” phase, adapt your product roadmap and iterate on your product. This might involve adding new features, refining existing ones, or even pivoting your product direction entirely.

This continuous learning and adaptation cycle ensures that your product evolves to meet the ever-changing needs of your users.

Growth Hacking: Scaling for Exponential Growth

While not mandatory for every product lifecycle, growth hacking is a strategic approach to exponentially grow your user base and scale your product to new heights.

But before push the pedal, validating your MVP (Minimum Viable Product) is paramount. By validating your MVP, you gain valuable user insights early on. This helps identify flaws and course-correct before significant investment goes into the product.

Now, assuming you have a validated model, here’s a breakdown of core functions of growth hacking:

  • Growth Strategy: Leverage growth hacking techniques like viral loops, piggy-backing, referral schemes, influencer marketing among others to attract users.
  • Experimentation: Run targeted marketing campaigns and test freemium models to find the most effective user acquisition methods. Expand reach by collaborating with complementary businesses.
  • Crack the code: Growth hacking uses experimentation and data to crack the code for explosive user growth. Once you discover the perfect mix of tactics, you can confidently go all in and scale your product to new heights.
  • Sustainable Growth: Constantly monitor and implement new trends for the sustainable growth of your digital product. Focus on UAC, user retention strategies, and infrastructure optimization to ensure your product scales efficiently.

By focusing on building a product that can support growth while strategically implementing growth tactics, you can achieve sustainable success in the ever-competitive digital landscape.

The best digital product engineering services will blend these product development phases with cutting-edge technology and AI automation.

But what will be the actual impact of product engineering on the business?

Digital Product Engineering Benefits for a Business

Digital product engineering is a continuous process. By focusing on iterative development and ongoing improvement, it empowers businesses to unlock a range of benefits:

1. Reduced Probability of Failure: 

Digital product engineering emphasizes data-driven decision making and user feedback throughout the development process, especially during the MVP stage. This minimizes the need for extensive guesswork and trial-and-error approaches, leading to a more efficient and targeted development cycle.

2. Enhanced Customer Engagement:  

Data-driven design and continuous improvement based on user feedback lead to a product that truly resonates with your target audience. This translates to higher customer satisfaction, loyalty, and increased brand advocacy.

3. Scalability for Future Growth:  

Building with modularity and maintainability in mind allows your product to seamlessly adapt as your business scales. This eliminates costly rewrites and ensures your product remains relevant in a dynamic market.

4. Optimized Resource Allocation:  

Automating repetitive tasks and streamlining workflows with custom-built solutions frees up employee time. This allows your team to focus on high-value activities like strategic innovation and developing features that drive user engagement.

5. Reduced Costs and Improved ROI:  

Continuous development helps eliminate features that don’t resonate with users, reducing development costs. Additionally, focusing on high-value features leads to a product that delivers a strong return on investment.

6. Avoiding Wastage of Efforts and Resources: 

By focusing on metrics and data that are actually valuable, sourced from your real customers, you shield your business from some very expensive mistakes. Agile methodologies helps eliminate the risk of pouring time and resources into developing features that ultimately don’t resonate with your target audience.

7. Faster Time-to-Market:  

Rapid prototyping and validation techniques allow for quick product iteration and testing. This lets you gather user feedback early and often, ensuring your product meets real-world needs and hits the market faster.

By embracing continuous digital product engineering, businesses can unlock a cycle of continuous improvement. They can deliver products that customers love, adapt to market changes quickly, and achieve greater efficiency and profitability in the long run. This ensures your business stays competitive and thrives in the ever-changing digital landscape.

For some real-world benefits of digital product development you can refer to Pragmatyc’s Success Stories.

Digital Product Engineering Challenges with Actionable Solutions

Digital Product Engineering Challenges

Now that you are aware of the digital product engineering phases, one can easily understand how challenging the entire process is. Because you don’t just have to build a digital product that aligns with your audience, the efforts also go into research, design, development, testing, marketing, and post-launch analysis, to name a few.

Here are a few common challenges that you should be aware of before making the ultimate decision:

Unawareness in Product Engineering

While there’s a creative spark involved in product design, successful digital product engineering relies heavily on a scientific approach. Vague ideas and intuition alone won’t guarantee a product that users love and the business thrives on.


  • Back up design and development choices with user research, A/B testing, and market data.
  • Set clear metrics for success, such as user engagement, conversion rates, and customer satisfaction.
  • Continuously gather user feedback and adapt your product based on what resonates with your target audience.

The Overwhelming Nature of the Entire Process

The sheer number of steps involved in digital product engineering, from ideation to post-launch analysis, can be daunting.  Keeping track of everything and ensuring a smooth workflow can feel overwhelming for founders.


  • Break down development into smaller, manageable sprints with clear goals.
  • Focus on building the core functionalities first, then iterate and add features based on user feedback.
  • Use collaboration platforms and project management software to streamline communication and track progress.
  • Ensure everyone on the team understands their role and how their work contributes to the overall product.

Rapid Product Development in the Fast-paced Environment

It can be very challenging for any business to keep up with the constant advancements in technology. Simply digitizing your company is not enough; you also need to modernize your products, which entails keeping up with the latest tech on a regular basis. You also need to look from your customers’ perspective, which helps evolve your digital product.


  • Practice smaller sprints  
  • Leverage rapid prototyping tools  
  • Arrange for real-time feedback mechanism.   

Integrating AI with your Digital Products

Businesses cannot overlook the undeniable revolution of AI in daily tasks, presenting a compelling opportunity to integrate its functionalities within your digital products. However, pinpointing the most impactful applications of AI for your specific product can be a challenge.


  • Identify how AI can empower your product 
  • Take help of AI consultants if needed  
  • Partner with AI professionals to implement the solution  

The Constant Threat of Data Privacy and Security.   

Data security is a rising concern in the digital era. Regardless of the industry, all businesses need to take data privacy very seriously. And more for product engineering professionals, as a major chunk of customer data and company information is at stake. 


  • Keep data security in your focus area   
  • Adhere to basic security standards while development.   
  • Target security certifications.  
  • Opt for expert consultation from security agencies.    

Hiring Professionals of multiple competencies for Product Development.   

Onboarding skilled professionals has been a common concern for companies. The shortage leads to an inflated price for digital product engineers and, at times, poor product engineering. Besides that, the management of an entire in-house team becomes pretty hefty for a business.


  • Partner with experienced digital engineering teams 
  • Outsource or augment competent professionals as required  

Digital Product Engineering Future Trends 2024

While low-code/no-code platforms, DevOps, and cloud solutions have become essential tools, the future holds even more exciting possibilities. Here are 5 cutting-edge trends that will redefine how we design, develop, and interact with digital products in 2024:

1. AI for Next-Gen Products

The rise of AI products like ChatGPT has sparked a revolution. These intelligent tools can automate tasks, streamline processes, and create exceptional user experiences. However, the power of AI extends beyond stand-alone products. Existing digital products can be transformed by integrating AI for “behind-the-scenes” functionalities, like the introduction of Magic Studio in Canva.  Whether you choose to build an AI product or leverage AI for internal operations, embracing its potential is key to creating smarter, user-friendly products.

2. The Networked World (IoT):

Imagine a world where everyday objects, from thermostats to cars, seamlessly communicate and collect data. This “Internet of Things” (IoT) goes beyond smart homes, connecting industrial machines, wearables, and even entire cities. While exciting for automation and remote monitoring, robust security measures and interoperability standards are crucial to protect user data and ensure smooth communication across this vast network.

3. Power of Edge Computing:

Traditional data processing often occurs in centralized locations, causing delays. Edge computing brings processing power and data storage closer to the devices themselves. This reduces latency (delays) and bandwidth usage, making it ideal for real-time applications like industrial automation and remote patient monitoring. Edge computing also enhances security and privacy by minimizing data transmission and even allows products to function with limited or no internet connectivity.

4. Rise of Voice User Interfaces (VUIs):

Voice User Interfaces (VUIs) allow users to interact with products through natural language commands. Advancements in Natural Language Processing (NLP) enable VUIs to understand complex queries and respond with human-like accuracy. This creates a completely hands-free and intuitive user experience, potentially making traditional user interfaces obsolete.

5. Prioritizing Product Personalization

Personalization is what the digital world revolves around. From our TikTok feeds to the Uber Eats menu and Amazon’s shopping cart, everything is so tempting because it has been customized to suit our tastes. Therefore, it wouldn’t be incorrect to expect an increase in personalized features in our digital products. Customer feedback, UX engagement, and general insights can help dive deeper into personalization.


Modern-day product development focuses on continuous integration and delivery. The digital product should keep evolving as per customer demand and market trends, but that won’t be the case if you stick to traditional development mindsets and methodologies. 

Do the research, revisit the phases, overcome those challenges, and watch out for future trends, and you will have a digital asset worth waking up for.

We hope the article was able to clarify the importance of digital product engineering for businesses. But if you are still in doubt, schedule your free Digital Product Consultation with Pragmatyc.


Who needs digital product engineering services?

Digital product engineering services are for almost anyone looking to build a digital asset. This includes large and mid-sized businesses, startups, various industries, like healthcare and finance, and even individual entrepreneurs. Developing digital products, such as mobile apps and websites, helps businesses reach out to their target audience and improve scalability.

What is the market size of digital product engineering?

According to multiple sources, the estimated market size of digital product engineering was somewhere around $1050 billion in 2023, and it’s expected to grow rapidly with a projected CAGR of 4.1% over the next five years.

What do digital product engineers do?

Digital product engineers develop digital software and are a part of the product management lifecycle from ideation to execution. Their day-to-day tasks include building prototypes, product engineering, quality testing, re-engineering and optimization, among others.

What are digital engineering examples?

There are a lot of digital engineering applications, but popular examples can include VR headsets, IoT or Internet of Things (installation of software and other tech in hardware devices), motion graphic websites, multi-purpose mobile apps, 360° reality projection, live-video streaming, and much more.

Written by Rahul Bajait

Co-founder & Chief Strategy Officer

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