Developing Mini Programs front-ends hosted on a Super App for a leading retail client

For a leading South African wholesaler, BBD assisted in the development and roll-out of the front-ends of Mini Programs hosted on a Super App platform which allows online mobile shopping. Following the successful launch of the Mini Program, BBD was awarded further development work to design and build the native mobile app for one of the client’s outlet stores. The design and development of both solutions ensured compliance with the client’s pre-defined UX / UI standards for consistency throughout.


  • Improve the digital client experience by developing intuitive front-end logic of current banner sites to boost conversion for growth acceleration
  • Improve site load times via image size optimisation and loading logic
  • Enhance fulfilment communication to enable greater order visibility
  • Leverage the Super App ecosystem to create friction-free Mini Programs that offer an intuitive mobile experience
  • Integrate different payment gateways and exception management
  • Develop a unified all-in-one mobile app which will become a leading player in the marketplace
  • Integrate APIs for digital commerce solutions to ensure front-end easily talks to back-end
  • Create seamless analytics integration and data recording for Business Intelligence (BI)
  • Include mobile app’s force upgrades and push notifications
  • Provide additional Release Train Engineer (RTE) and development consultation to build a best-in-class mobile shopping app


  • Created a digital channel with simplified customer journeys and consistent experiences for customers to shop online
  • Increased shopping footprint and conversion rates with a greater Net Interest Revenue and budget
  • Implemented the data-driven approach to enable more efficient and streamlined management of the app and reduce iterations allowing the client to reap:
  • Widest catalogue of products
  • Diversified third-party seller base including domestic, regional and cross-border sellers
  • Fast order fulfilment
  • Solution offers near real-time order tracking
  • Flexible omnichannel fulfilment options maximising convenience and reducing costs
  • Competitive algorithmic pricing
  • Data recording in analytics to enable competitive pricing
  • Intuitive user interfaces (UI)
  • Mobile first, customer-centric design approach enables efficient and responsive search
  • Informative product content and large coverage of product ratings and reviews
  • Personalisation

Overview of the solution

A new technology in most markets, Super Apps are essentially an application ecosystem with an extensive range of services personalised for its users. These apps are typically payments or messaging apps that provide additional integration points and self-contained journeys as part of its available capabilities. What makes Super Apps special is that they can be updated independently, without needing to download the core app from an app store thereby reducing costs and helping to retain users. Third-party engineers can also access a fully integrated development environment in the Super App which feeds into a fully-fledged app store experience where the engineers can then build and test their apps for release on the larger Super App. This is what is known as a Mini Program.

Having been involved in building Mini Programs on Africa’s first Super App, the client reached out to BBD to assist in the development of their Mini Program. The project was then expanded to include the development of the front-end for the client’s native mobile shopping app as well.

The application was designed around UX / UI best principles, customer journey navigation, API integration for data elements, orchestration for shopping logic and customer communication elements (or CX) to meet the client’s requirement for seamless customer experiences and intuitive shopping journeys.

The BBD team also made use of front-end engineering principles to ensure the adaptability and stability of the solution.

The solution itself followed a data-driven approach, low-code principles, and custom orchestration on data and promotional setups allowing the client to manage promotions without the app itself having to change.

Leveraging our experience, the BBD team also introduced a unique, fresh approach for mobile app design known as the customer-centric approach, allowing the client to mainly rely on what their customers’ needs are. In this way, we partnered with the client not only on the solution, but also on establishing the requirements for a solution that will best meets their overarching objectives.

BBD was instrumental in the design, creation and navigational aspects to ensure that where relevant, the customer-centric approach did not duplicate current web behaviour.


The Mini Program front-end was developed using Ant TypeScript, and the native solution using React JavaScript. The overarching approach was a mixture of Waterfall and Agile methodologies, however, these were used more as guidelines and not enforced implicitly. Design, specifications and code were delivered in parallel, creating a tangible environment and ultimately, app maturity.

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