Despite significant progress in the development of treatment options, melanoma remains a leading cause of death due to skin cancer. Advances in our understanding of the genetic, transcriptomic, and morphologic spectrum of benign and malignant melanocytic neoplasia have enabled the field to propose biomarkers with potential diagnostic, prognostic, and predictive value. While these proposed biomarkers have the potential to improve clinical decision making at multiple critical intervention points, most remain unvalidated. Clinical validation of even the most commonly assessed biomarkers will require substantial resources, including limited clinical specimens. It is therefore important to consider the properties that constitute a relevant and clinically-useful biomarker-based test prior to engaging in large validation studies. In this review article we adapt an established framework for determining minimally-useful biomarker test characteristics, and apply this framework to a discussion of currently used and proposed biomarkers designed to aid melanoma detection, staging, prognosis, and choice of treatment.