Designing an application for Retail and specially Online grocery will need to have great focus on
- “User Experience” as the customers like to experiment new launches, but if the user experience is not good, they will never come back. So, the margin of error is very less.
They key factors behind user experience are
- UI Design ( Colours, fonts, easy access to the desired items with least clicks)
- Speed of response and loading of the pages
As an online grocery, you would have a lot of items and inventory to show. So, the challenge becomes multi fold if the app is not designed and developed properly.
So, first deciding point is which platform ? Native or cross-platform application ?
– Since the base data structure is not going to change over time ( a customer comes, visits the categories, subcategories, moves them to cart, checks-out, checks coupons, offers etc), it is better to go with Native applicationdevelopment.
What really changes daily are the availability of the inventory and prices. I will come to that in a while.
– Another advantage of going native is the speed of loading of the application ( a key decision factor), which you can never match with the cross-platform apps.
Online grocery app should be developed with a synchronization framework. Say, category and inventory pictures are not going to change frequently. As loading pictures take time, you consider them to store offline in devices and synchronize them occasionally. Prices and availability can change daily and real-time so, we should get them in online mode. To optimize the user experience, we should still allow them to continue the shopping in a disconnected mode also and have a periodic check on the cart for the prices and availability of the items.