Football is the most global sport in existence. Club rosters include people from all over the world. International competition features not only national sides, but friendly and championship matches between clubs as well. This international character naturally extends to fandom; one should hardly be surprised to see a resident of Singapore or Tel Aviv wearing the jersey of an Argentinian who plays for a side in Barcelona.
Until fairly recently, clusters of fans would have remained fairly isolated outside the cities where their clubs were located. One might have found a couple of fellow devotees by chance, or maybe a fan club if one resided in a sufficiently large urban area.
But there was little opportunity for a broader connection with the worldwide community of fans. Smartphones and social media offered some hope, but one still had to contend with an endless parade of political screeds and animal videos in order to connect with like-minded souls.
Top Soccer Fan decided to change that.
We wanted to give each fan the chance to show their devotion to their club by recording their dedicated attendance at matches and other activities. It turns out there are a lot of factors that shape the experience, whether at the corner pub or the Maracana.
The thing is, too many fan-centred apps are basically one-sided, leaving the fan a passive consumer of whatever is thrown at them. That’s unsatisfying for fans, and it wasn’t going to be satisfying for us either. So we wanted to give them more. We wanted to create a force multiplier for the fan experience, so that 10 years from now, fans would look back on life before it and think, “How did I put up with that?”
Options include predictions, photo uploads, man of the match selection, accounts of the match, and, of course, social media sharing. Fans who attend a match in person can review their experiences at the venue, broken down into several categories such as atmosphere, food, entertainment and safety. All of this activity is recognised via achievements and points...allowing individuals to claim the title of “Top Soccer Fan” amongst their friends and around the globe.
If sharing an experience gets in the way of enjoying it, fans won’t do it. If it’s a pain to get information from one source, fans will find another. Top Soccer Fan needed to fit seamlessly into the fans’ experience while viewing a match, and be a snap to use between them.
The emphasis of the design, then, was on a clean, streamlined interface with no redundancy. Simple, clearly-marked icons and uncluttered menus make navigation a snap. Flat design elements make the app seem a natural complement to the OS, and keep the focus squarely on the content the app provides.
Advertisers get the opportunity to reach out to the global audience of football fans while targeting their content with precision. With all the different ways fans interact, it’s good to have the infrastructure to properly match efforts to goals.
What every fan knows about a football match is that it can completely change in the blink of an eye. Fans react instantly; we wanted to make sure advertisers could keep up. Top Soccer Fan allows advertisers to do so practically in real-time, with easily created advertisements as well as in-game and post-game offer opportunities that app users can react to immediately. Advertisers can also create interactive experiences for fans, by means such as sponsoring awards for “fan of the month” and other incentives.
In the same way we are committed to making Top Soccer Fan available to all international fans, we wanted to make sure all fans of both iOS and Android would be able to support their favourite teams. We successfully made the app compatible with both platforms by developing them simultaneously, which leads to the highest quality control of the graphics and UI.
After all, soccer fans should only have to fight over who is going to win the World Cup, not whether the app works better on iOS or Android, so we built this app from scratch to cut down on at least some of the friendly rivalries.
It’s a tall order, but we wanted to create the same feeling a fan gets when their team hits the winning goal – the excitement, the relief, the urge to embrace the stranger next to them with abandon – but in a subtle way. We wanted the easy design of the navigation, the excitement of the check-in feature, and the feeling that’s created through real-time updates of being part of your club or league whether you’re in the arena or miles away on your couch, to be an undeniable win for soccer players, fans and sponsors alike.
Stats tell a story, and every sports fan loves a good story. A true fan can list their favourite team’s shots, possessions and pass success percentages like they’re rattling off the alphabet, and Top Soccer Fan is a place for fans to keep track of all the stats in real-time. Beyond just keeping track of stats, they can read accounts of the game and get an insider’s look at how the stats are developing, as well as reading some of their favourite sports announcers’ and writers’ social media posts, to become the historians and storytellers every fan strives to be.
Part of the reason soccer has established itself as the international game is because it is a cultural cornerstone for so many different countries. In some ways, it seems like an old sport with a long, rich history, and it is! In other ways, it has been a bright spot in a troubled, modern world.
Soccer brings unity and community around the globe, and we wanted to provide an app that would have the same effect. From checking in at the stadium or getting real-time updates from your house, to talking to other fans about the last goal, and, finally, choosing a place for a post-game meal, Top Soccer Fan has you covered. And even though the app does award a Top Soccer Fan through points and achievements, when it comes to a new, better way to experience soccer, every user wins.
The development and the implementation of the app was so successful that the Top Soccer Fan team is already working to build a website that will complement the app, for fans wanting to experience Top Soccer Fan using their web browser.app page design