The study, carried out by digital agency Code Computerlove, found some clear differences between the haves and the have-nots when it comes to how they develop their digital products.
According to the results, top performing business are more likely to be looking to increase customer lifetime value than their mainstream counterparts (68% vs. 47%), while 82% of high performers agree strongly with the statement "Focusing on user needs leads to better business outcomes".
For successful businesses, the numbers reporting a "focus on outcomes in delivery" (75%) and a "focus on long-term goals versus short term targets" (59%) were almost double that of underperforming businesses reporting the same behaviour.
The research also found that 60% of top performers are satisfied with their ability to deliver digital products on time and on budget. Conversely, only 19% of the mainstream felt the same.
In addition, some 50% of top performing companies (vs. 38% mainstream) are currently aiming to speed up their performance and 69% adopt agile processes in development.
Commenting on the findings, Code Computerlove chief executive Tony Foggett said that 'product thinking' has emerged as a way in which organisations are navigating the need to deliver increased consumer centricity and agility using larger more complex, and business critical, technology platforms.
He added: "It's a way of achieving digital effectiveness as part of a digital transformation process, but it's not just a question of adopting new digital tools and platforms, it's the ways of thinking and organising teams around these tools and across an organisation as a whole.
"Taken together the aims and approaches of the top performing businesses that completed the survey reflect 'product thinking' - a mindset based on continually building value for the customer through an agile, non-siloed, digitally-savvy culture with clearly defined business goals."
"We're undoubtedly in a period of change and the pace of this change means companies cannot afford to develop products and projects in the traditional ways. The structures and ways of thinking that dominated businesses in the late 20th century are not suited to the demands of the 21st."
Businesses which have moved on from 'big bang' releases, and are taking a more long term, agile and customer-value approach – akin to product thinking, believe that this approach is paying dividends, Foggett concluded.