Building Mobile Apps for Sneakerheads at Stadium Goods

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To learn more about how Stadium Goods develops its mobile apps, listen to Episode 79 of DevOps Radio.

When a hot new sneaker hits the market, it can sell out in days. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get it anymore. Thanks to Stadium Goods, the leading aftermarket in high-end sneakers and streetwear, you can still buy that sold-out pair of Travis Scott Air Force 1 low tops – and it’s guaranteed to be authentic and unworn.

Since a big portion of Stadium Goods’ customers do their shopping on mobile devices, the company has made it a priority to continue building mobile apps that inspire customers and suppliers to do business with the company. “You can have the best product in the world, but if it’s not quick, easy and intuitive to buy – if nothing is drawing you to using it – then it’s not going to be successful,” says Nick Koutrelakos, lead React Native mobile developer at Stadium Goods.

Koutrelakos has been building mobile apps for Stadium Goods for going on two years, working alongside several other developers on the company’s mobile “squad,” part of a larger team of engineers developing software for every aspect of the business, from the corporate website to customer service. 

Koutrelakos says his education in supply chain management and marketing has helped him engineer better mobile apps. “Being able to understand the business, including areas such as warehousing and fulfillment, really enables you to deliver better software,” he says. “Not knowing that part would lead to gaps in our feature development process because we wouldn’t think to ask some critical questions.” 

The Maryland native was drawn to building mobile apps early in his career. “That was the part of my day-to-day programming job that I liked the most,” he says. “I really liked the layout and it was much easier to manage.”

Using React Native to Build Mobile Apps

Koutrelakos’ mobile squad does most of its work in React Native, the open-source mobile application framework created by Facebook. “React is the next big thing,” he says. “That’s where I started. I took strongly to React because it was fairly simple to pick up and had a very strong community, which was beneficial because it was free learning everywhere, everyone had great advice.” 

His squad has been leveraging agile methods to speed integration and delivery, including implementing automated testing where possible. The team has also been incorporating feature flags into the development process, using CloudBees Feature Flags to better manage feature deployment and improve release collaboration. 

“CloudBees Feature Flags is very lightweight and has a great Reactive Native SDK,” says Koutrelakos. “It’s easy for developers and our product stakeholders to use and the dashboard gives stakeholders a clear view of the complex landscape, minimizing miscommunication and delays.” 

Does Koutrelakos have a fun DevOps story – I call them “DevOOPS!” – to share? What else is the sneaker leader doing to build better mobile apps? Tune in to DevOps Radio [add link] to find out.


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