Topaz - Grocery App
Promotions and loyalty in one place, explore the grocery app for the unique supermarket chain.
Mobile application for Topaz was an exceptional challenge for us. It is not easy to create a promotional platform which encourages shoppers to actively use the promotions offered by the store. Here, every element matters, and due to the specificity of the platform, we had to carefully plan the distribution of content. The same applies to the user's attention, which has to be directed to the most important functionalities from the business point of view. In this case it was the loyalty card, newspapers and promotional coupons.
In the retail industry, where individual product prices are similar, well thought-out touchpoints count, which are designed to evoke the right emotions and attract the customer to the store. Of particular importance is the appropriate presentation of the store's assortment. The task we were given was to present the above mentioned in a modern and light form. The client expected that the solution would give the possibility of online shopping, both on the website and in the mobile application. The goal was to give shoppers the functionality of planning purchases and increase the percentage of coupons burned during stationary and online shopping
We started our work with a thorough conversation with Topaz's employees to determine what expectations they had from us and what goals they set for the application. We described all the findings in a business analysis (BRD - Business Requirement Document), which organized and structured our client's vision. After concluding the business vision we moved on to creating functional documentation (FRD - Functional Requirement Document), whose task was to transfer the described business assumptions into a detailed description of modules and functionalities of the target software.
After the client's approval we proceeded to create a Technical Requirement Document (TRD), which translated the functional description into a programmatic one. This allowed us to accurately plan a secure and scalable solution architecture connected to other Topaz systems. As part of the work itself, we created the graphic design, frontend and backend of the app, and a CMS that allowed the Topaz business to change graphics, content and add new promotions to the app on their own.
Topaz company ordered the following work:
- Detailing the application vision presented to us and establishing the business objectives to be fulfilled (BRD preparation).
- Together with the client, translate the described vision into application functionality and CMS panel (FRD preparation).
- Creating technical documentation of the project, needed to start programming works and to integrate with other Topaz solutions (preparation of TRD).
- Building on the RDF document proposal of application visualization.
- Prepare target graphic design of the application.
- Carrying out programming work according to SCRUM methodology.
- Production implementation and integration with external and internal systems of the client.
During the implementation of the work we encountered a number of challenges, which are inevitable at such a scale of project. At the initial stage of discovery it was particularly important to organize the vision presented to us. Our experience shows that this is the most important phase in the implementation of the project, which has a decisive impact on its proper conduct. During a series of workshops we defined the final shape of the functionality in response to the previously defined business needs of the client. First of all, we made sure that they were understandable for all project stakeholders, so that both we and the client knew what we would get at the end.
Another particularly important element was the look of the application. There are already many solutions on the market from our competitors that look great. We wanted the design of the application to put appearance and functionality on an equal footing, so that the customers would not get lost in the application and would use all the planned solutions. This is especially important when we take into account the customer's purchase path, which we want to know and control. Each of its stages has different characteristics and we should speak to the customer in a different way. Presenting promotions to the buyer should be well thought out and shown in such a form as to evoke interest and desire to buy. Of course we are aware that the moment of purchase is equally important, so we designed the final screens appropriately, so as to maximally encourage the user to complete the transaction. During the workshops with Topaz we managed to create a mobile application project that met all these assumptions and at the same time perfectly fit into the visual identity of our client.
An equally important element was the environment of the application. It should be noted that Topaz is a developed chain of stores with many different solutions which we had to take into account while designing the application. The whole process of user registration and login had to be integrated. Another challenge was to transfer the loyalty card to the application and its operation on cash register systems. We were especially interested in connecting with the checkout system so that the process of customer service at the checkout was as little problematic as possible and stable at the same time.
We can divide the whole work carried out into three stages:
- Workshops: Before starting the project, we conducted a workshop in which we created a list of functional requirements (FRD), in response to the business requirements (BRD). At this stage, we also defined the scope of the system architecture (TRD). In this way, we aligned the scope of requirements with the client's needs. We better understood the objectives and found a way to achieve them.
- Development Phase: The UX design and the underlying graphic design of the application correspond to the client's visual identity. We took care of the legibility of the content in the application. During the development phase we adopted the guiding system (Android) so that both applications behave similarly and do not differ in, for example, the way particular functionalities work.
- Implementation and integration with the client's systems: Thanks to the analysis during the workshop, we learned the details of the systems the client uses. A detailed description of the application architecture helped us to efficiently implement and integrate it with systems outside the product.
Finally, we created two versions of the application for Android and iOS platforms. The native applications were written in Kotlin (Android) and Swift (iOS) programming languages. The project involved a team of 5 people, including a senior project manager, a senior android developer, a senior iOS developer and a tester. Due to the large number of customers and the assumption that the system will be B2C, we focused on a large number of functional, automated and security tests (mainly due to the sensitive user data).
The project was realized in:
- Java (backend, CMS)
- Kotlin (Android)
- Swift (iOS)
The TOPAZ app worked stably from day one and also gained several thousand users on the first day. Currently, it is over 100,000 users who use the app every day to plan their shopping and browse the best promotions while in the store. As part of the client's business needs, the app accomplishes several of them, namely:
- building customer loyalty by introducing coupons that actively loyalise shoppers and encourage them to return to the store,
- ongoing communication, thanks to an independent possibility to generate PUSH notifications from the CMS panel,
- additional network marketing channel allowing to reach customers at low cost, characterized by high interest of buyers.
We could count not only on the quick action of the team, but also on substantive support for the designed solutions.
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