Creating a fast and simple native Android experience for Sportsbet.

Sportsbet is Australia’s premier online bookmaker with a variety of wagering and gambling options on a vast range of sporting and entertainment events. Working within a large project team, I acted as a Product Design Lead spread across multiple feature teams to design a native Android experience for Sportsbet. Leveraging the Material Design framework for the basis of the visual design, I was involved with a wider team helping lead the prototyping, ideation and testing through to defining the end to end experience and visual design for the mobile application.

The need for a native Android experience to reinforce Sportsbet as Australia’s premier online bookmaker.

The Sportsbet brand is fun, loud and playful. Their irreverent TVC’s and marketing campaigns are instantly recognisable all around Australia. It was important to make sure the Sportsbet brand was evident throughout the app but not applied in such a way that it was overpowering and effected the user experience. Keeping the interface clean and simple with the enormous amount of features in the app was the main challenge.

The new visual approach for the app was to use unique, branded illustrations where possible to reinforce the sports theme which helped to reinforce the Sportsbet brand in the marketplace. In advocating a user-centered design approach across the project, the team of designers and engineers worked to create an easy-to-use and intuitive mobile betting experience. Check out the visual case study of this project over on Behance.com.

The typical Sportsbet customer spans a wide variety of demographics and segments. In order to properly define who these customers were, the team created personas to help segment customer goals, behaviours and pain points. The personas were informed by previous research that was conducted prior to the kick-off of the project.

The personas helped us construct a narrative around the different types of customers so we could understand and empathise with with them throughout the entire product development process. The personas also helped us communicate some of the more detailed research insights to project stakeholders.

We held co-design workshops consisting of preliminary sketching sessions with Product Mangers and Senior Stakeholders on the project. These sessions gave the design team a broader understanding of the problems, potential features, layouts and allowed other team members to express themselves through rough scribbles, storyboards and detailed drawings.

The design team emphasized the importance of spending time in the ‘problem space’ to properly define what the actual problems were that we were trying to solve rather than jumping straight into solution-mode. The outputs from these workshops gave us some valuable ideas and insights in solving some major challenges with the design.

In focusing on connecting customers to their favourite racing and sporting events as quickly as possible, we started by mapping out a detailed IA which formed the basis of the prototype. The IA allowed the design team to map out pathways where we explored flows that focused on speed and encouraging discovery through recommendations.

By utilising the Material Design Framework as the basis of our design, it allowed us to rapidly prototype large sections of the app which then flowed seamlessly into the visual design component of the project. These wireframes were then used across extensive user testing sessions with Sportsbet customers to gather further insights.

So what did Sportsbet customers really want with a mobile betting experience? Speed? Simplicity? More features?

“When there's a game, event or race on, I just want to be able to find it as quickly as possible in the app, check the odds and place my bet. I don't want to waste time, speed matters!”

MickUser testing participant

“I love being able to search and explore the different sports and races in the app to see what I can have a punt on. Some features matter but the best odds are most important to me without a doubt.”

LaurenUser testing participant

“I want the app to be simple. I'm not really into the complex betting options and all that stuff. I just want to be able to place a simple head-to-head bet on my favourite teams and get on with my day.”

TerryUser testing participant

Creating a fast and easy betting experience was a key focus when designing the app.

Keeping the interface clean and simple with the large amount of features we had to fit into the app was an enormous challenge. The design team knew that when customers want to place a bet, the experience has to be quick and simple which we delivered in a native Android experience to customers all over Australia. With instant access to additional data such as live scores, form guides, race results and speed maps to enhance the betting experience, the extra data provided added value for Sportsbet customers and helped them make more informed decisions when placing a bet.

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