When it comes to big purchases, there’s too much information and consumers don’t know who to trust. Vast uses big data and analytics to provide context and insights for automotive (CarStory) and real estate (HomeStory). The result? An efficient, highly personalized buying experience that benefits everyone.
In 2013, Vast needed a specialized mobile partner to collaborate on an iPad app that would help car dealerships handle massive amounts of inventory data. The app was so effective, Volkswagen of America is now using CarStory in VW dealerships nationwide.
Since that first launch, we’ve collaborated on Design initiatives, the Android launch of HomeStory and most recently helping drive their consumer facing CarStory app on iOS.
When it comes to car buying, seemingly simple comparisons between vehicles require a lot of work, since so many factors play into a decision. It’s complicated for the car buyer, and just as much of a challenge for the salesperson. CarStory tracks each dealership’s inventory and detailed metrics of each vehicle. This saves the sales staff from memorizing the history of each.
With CarStory, a user receives the full story on any vehicle, everything from mileage to inspection reports. Each listing includes “chapters” in the vehicle’s story, like maintenance history and market reports. The app harnesses all of Vast’s automotive data to show users how a particular car compares to the average vehicle in terms of price, condition, and other metrics. We used these metrics to add an alternative chapter to each listing’s timeline, which pulls up an easy-to-read grid of cars with similar-but-different stories.
For CarStory to be a success, we had to integrate seamlessly with Vast’s extended team of developers, designers, directors, and salespeople to understand the goals and constraints, develop the most effective solution, and analyze feedback as it came in straight from the field and end users. We implemented a streamlined agile process that allowed us to interface with all of the teams involved, and take over mobile responsibilities. Our team tackled longstanding bugs, implemented anticipated features, and maintained Vast’s codebase through extensive UI overhauls and large OS updates.
When we first joined the CarStory project, the app was not being widely used by dealership sales teams. In the first month after launching the updated CarStory, usage increased tenfold.
Since then, Volkswagen of America has selected CarStory to be used in every Volkswagen dealership across the nation.Read more about it here.
HomeStory is a sales tool for realtors — Similar to CarStory, this application funnels complex data sets about the real estate market into an easy-to-use, interactive tool for buying and selling properties.
We worked closely with Vast to create an application realtors can use to organize and simplify the home search or selling process. We squashed bugs in their HomeStory iOS app and ported the feature-rich application to the Android platform to achieve their target milestones.
HomeStory allows realtors to show their clients details and photos of a home, including factors like school districts and property values. The best part is that each listing is shown with a side-by-side comparison of similar properties, with clear, simple visuals for how each listing stacks up against competitors in terms of price, square footage, market value, and more.
Vast needed to unveil HomeStory on all platforms, including web, iOS, and Android, in time for an industry conference and stakeholder events, which put us on a tight deadline. We took a rapid MVP (minimum viable product) approach, putting the final product in the client’s hands in three months. To make this happen, we had to be very flexible and very well-integrated with Vast’s technical and sales teams. Weekly testing and feedback with these teams allowed us to pivot with the shifting needs of the project, helping us keep pace and hand off a sparkling product on time. Our client took the app directly to investors for a successful presentation.
Jackrabbit accelerated development on HomeStory, building an Android native version and purging bugs from the iOS version while maintaining the integrity of Vast’s codebase. We added and improved features with meticulous attention to user interface until it was ready to impress.
We focus on mobile, so Vast can focus on what they do best.
“Overall the experience has been great, very positive and everything we hoped it would be. The output and the integration of the Jackrabbit Team with our internal team was very easy and effective and helped us reach our goals quickly.”Olivier ModicaVice President of Engineering, Vast