Building a Super App for a Sporting Goods Retailer


Sportmaster is the largest sporting goods retail chain in Eastern Europe, China, and the CIS. The company sells outdoor gear and sports equipment and provides supporting services for pro and amateur athletes.

Together with HeyInnovations, they are developing a digital ecosystem of sporting goods and services. One of the projects that we had to create for this ecosystem was a convenient super app that would house all ancillary services and work as an extra sales channel for the retailer.


sales conversion in the iOS app


sales conversion in the Android app


average ticket increase

Business challenge

In 2020, shoppers doubled down on purchasing sporting goods in online stores. That year, Sportmaster saw its highest order conversion rate in the region, having received 200,000 new customers.

Despite the overall growth, the retailer felt a pressing competition from marketplaces. Seeing the growing demand, marketplaces broadened their assortment three times, and increased online sales by 187%.

Sportmaster didn’t want to lose its clients and the share of the sporting goods market to marketplaces. To wall off from the competitors and provide complementary value to customers, the company decided to offer them the things that others couldn’t, and started developing its own ecosystem of online sports services.

The retailer shifted from just offering sporting goods to fully facilitating a healthy lifestyle. Now, it helps its clients to travel and monitor their health, do sports and gain insights on healthy living, attend sports events and connect with communities of like-minded people.

Sportmaster researched what other needs its target audience had aside from the goods and launched new services to cover these demands.

Key tasks

  • Unifying the ecosystem services inside one digital environment.
  • Redesigning the mobile app while keeping on-brand.
  • Enhancing user experience and improving the key metrics.
  • Developing and releasing new mobile apps for iOS and Android.

How we tackled the tasks

Refreshed the app’s color palette to create a consistent brand image in all channels

60% of Sportmaster’s audience are omnichannel buyers: they view goods in physical stores and then order them via the website or the app. This process can go the other way around. The important thing here is that the brand must be clearly recognizable in all the channels.

To maintain the brand’s signature style in both online and offline spaces and increase the share of omnichannel sales, we studied the interior of the physical stores and then recreated its elements in the app design concept.

The new design is built upon the brand’s signature color palette. We refreshed the colors, made them more saturated and contrasting, which gave a spirited and airy feel to the interface.

The deep blue shade represents assurance, the white makes the interfaces look clean and decluttered, and the bright red catches the eye of the user.

Harmonized visual language to boost conversions

We studied the old interface design and noticed that its elements were inconsistent and oftentimes conflicted with each other. The brand had an uncoordinated approach to its visual language and:

  • Designed banners in different styles, causing banner blindness in users.
  • Used small typography, which hampered the readability of product names and notifications.
  • Implemented annoying ads and push notifications that distracted customers from making purchases.
  • Focused on showing brand tags instead of useful product information.

Each visual element was supposed to draw users’ attention, but in the end only distracted customers from what Sportmaster had to offer.

For the new super app, we developed a visual language that represented the dynamic nature of different sports and accentuated the individuality of the people who do them.

Visual language that works

New banners show athletes in motion and reflect the sports dynamics.

Bold typography and contrast background direct users’ attention to the brand's message.

Different fonts for different ideas

Varying typeface designs convey the unique nature and character of different sports: relaxed—for yoga; energetic—for soccer; rhythmic—for cross-country skiing.

Product photos to boost conversions

Professional model shots spruce up the catalog and help users imagine the goods on themselves.

As a result, users started to engage with the app more often: banner clickability increased by 65%.

Created a no-code app builder so that the company could experiment with components to optimize conversions

We built an app admin panel that works as a no-code solution, allowing Sportmaster to manually rearrange interface components such as recommendations and banners, without writing extra code.

The modular app grid creates visual order and improves readability, helping users to view relevant offers and effortlessly move through the interface. With the modular grid, Sportmaster can assemble the home screen feed like a construction set:

  • Remove any blocks or sections from the admin panel without coding or issuing new releases.
  • Experiment with design patterns.
  • Test marketing hypotheses.
  • Find the options that result in most conversions.

Gathered all in-app services in one section to increase user engagement

Sportmaster is expanding beyond just a sporting goods store. It develops digital services that facilitate non-product sport needs of its customers.

To make it easier for users to follow the news, work out, and discover sports events, we created useful mini apps and conveniently placed them in one section.

All in one

The new section is accessed by tapping and displays all the mini apps on one screen. To this screen, we transferred all the existing Sportmaster services, and provided the possibility of adding new ones on demand.

With the integration of services, customers started to spend more time in the app and use it more often.

Helped develop new mini apps to facilitate healthy habits

Driven to become a go-to platform for healthy living, Sportmaster launched several mini apps that help users maintain their healthy habits. We designed the services and helped with their development.

Sporting events

The Events mini app features upcoming sporting activities, promotes user-relevant services, and helps the brand forge a community of engaged athletes.

Here, Sportmaster suggests trying new shoes, listening to expert tips, and running a marathon or a skiing race with the brand’s equipment.

It also helps engage customers in the company’s activities and collects feedback on new goods. After the events, Sportmaster awards participants bonus points that can be used to pay in stores.

Sportmaster Media

Sportmaster grows its own media service where it publishes expert articles, recommendations, sports news, and match results.

With the help of this service, the company analyzes its customers’ interests and offers them personalized content. To a soccer fan, it suggests a pair of new boots, and to an “Ice skating” section reader—ice skates and knee pads.

Activity tracker

A step counting service motivates users to walk more. It synchronizes with Apple Health, uploads the number of steps made by the user, and awards bonus points for each milestone.

Users can take part in walking challenges, compete with other users for super prizes, save bonus points, and spend them later in Sportmaster stores.

Synchronization with Apple Health allows the app to create an even more personalized experience. Sportmaster analyzes user speed, running and walking distance, and suggests relevant shoes in push notifications.

Created mobile app gamification for better user experience and more interactions

Sportmaster aimed to increase user engagement and help customers develop a new look on the brand. Together, we came up with a mobile game that addresses business challenges as well as entertains users.

Key game mechanics

1. Personal ID grants access to the game. A user receives it when registering for an account. This way, the company increases the number of registered loyalty program members.

2. Game tasks motivate users to open new mini apps and shop on Sportmaster. This way, the retailer introduces customers to new capabilities and induces return purchases.

3. Fortune wheels award prizes and help engage users in the game.

4. In-game currency motivates users to visit the game every day and participate in the final super prize draw.

Thanks to gamification, one million customers started using the new service section and engaged with the brand for more than shopping.

Used modular approach to streamline and accelerate development

Apart from the flagship super app, Sportmaster also has mobile applications for other countries and sister companies. To help the retailer grow, we developed the app using modular architecture.

Fast and customizable

The super app consists of separate modules: authorization, user profile, catalog, cart, mini apps, and others. Sportmaster can add these modules to sister brand apps by simply changing their design.

Such an approach saves more time and money than creating mobile applications from scratch. All modules are independent of one another and can function on their own, which allows for a faster development process.

Created and animated brand illustrations to help users navigate the app

Sportmaster wanted to fill the app with intuitively clear illustrations in its brand style, so that users could understand from the first glance which app section they are visiting. We used the company’s goods as the major inspiration for the illustrations and suggested sports-based metaphors for indicating different states.

Binoculars mark the first sign-up

A compass indicates no connection to the Internet

A basketball hoop signifies an empty cart

We made the illustrations in a flat, minimalistic design to keep user attention on the important interface elements. The illustrations also subtly lead users to target actions: going to the catalog, adding to the cart, or liking an item.

Updated the product card and directed user attention to the goods to increase the likelihood of a sale

We decluttered the old product card, making it more informative and visually clear.

Product videos in the card help customers see the items from different angles in motion.

Detailed product descriptions give information on manufacturing and item characteristics, helping customers with their choice.

Sportmaster experts provide answers to users’ questions and help customers learn more about the products.

Eventually, users started shopping through the app more often, and the average ticket grew by 15%.

Updated and enhanced the cart to reduce abandonment rate

Checkout process

In the old app, a user could pay for the order and then learn that the required item was out of stock. In such cases, Sportmaster had to cancel the order and deal with the negative feedback.

To avoid such situations in the new app, we connected it to the stock management system. Now, the app keeps track of item availability and notifies users if something runs out of stock before they pay for the order.

Cart hints

We added the “Start shopping” button into the cart to redirect users to the catalog, where they can start browsing goods.

57% of customers use the cart as a shopping list. To let shoppers check out with a new cart without losing the previously saved items, we enabled the function of cart transfer. It helps customers move the saved goods to favorites with just one tap.

New payment methods

Customers can use bonus points to pay at the checkout. The app awards extra bonuses for order pickup, which motivates users to visit physical stores.

We connected a BNPL service so that users could buy high-priced items with less hesitation. With such payment, Sportmaster receives the entire sum at once, and customers have more time to pay in installments.

After these updates, the cart abandonment rate decreased, and the sales conversions grew by 12%.


Sportmaster launched the new app versions in February 2022. Thanks to the new services, users started to spend more time in the app and give it higher rates in the stores: the app rating on App Store and Google Play grew from 4.2 to 4.8.


sales conversion in the iOS app


sales conversion in the Android app


average ticket increase

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