Transitioning the Product and Engineering Team to Become Product-Led at Bike24

The Client: BIKE24

BIKE24 is the ultimate destination for cycling enthusiasts, specializing in premium gear and accessories. Founded in 2002, the company has established itself as a leading provider of high-quality cycling products, offering an expansive selection of items to support green mobility.

BIKE24's mission is to create an ecosystem for the fast-growing community of bike enthusiasts and be an enabler of green mobility.

The company offers a wide range of products, including bicycles, components, clothing, shoes, and accessories. They carry products from some of the top brands in the industry. BIKE24 also offers a variety of services, such as bike rentals, repairs, and custom builds, to help customers get the most out of their cycling experience.

In addition to its physical stores, BIKE24 operates an online store that allows customers worldwide to shop from the comfort of their own homes.

BIKE24 has evolved from a small retailer into one of Europe's leading online shops for cycling, with yearly revenues exceeding 250 million euros.

The Mission: Interim Product Manager for the Search & Inspire Team

The Mission

The Product Manager in the Search & Inspire Team BIKE24, we joined to bridge the gap and move initiatives forward in the 3-6 months usually needed to recruit, hire and bring onboard a new in-house full-time Product Manager.

BIKE24 was also undergoing a transformational period, focusing on becoming product-led. This coincided with the departure of the Engineering Manager of the same team, who had not been replaced when we joined. Our role was also to provide checks and balances with the Software Architect to ensure BIKE24’s interests were well represented in the product and tech decisions.

The Team Setup and Challenges

The cross-functional team included six Engineers and a Product Designer. Implementation of the new product listing engine was lagging behind schedule, and progress seemed to be stalled. While there had been a great deal of anticipation for the introduction of this new technology, there were numerous delays in its deployment.

Client Expectations

The Head of Product expected Product People to partner with the development team in meeting objectives, including discovering and shipping the planned features. Due to internal dependencies and pre-existing reporting structures, we were also expected to provide reliable projections to realize our objectives.

Our first goal was to get things moving again and improve delivery:

  • Coach the development team into foreseeing possible issues and finding solutions systematically.
  • Provide thought-through solutions and complete product requirements before implementation.
  • Improve the quality of the refinement sessions
  • Keep management thoroughly informed of roadblocks and propose solutions to overcome them.

How We Helped

Support the development team in removing roadblocks to launching two pages with the new search engine

Problem:

  • The initial goal was to reduce the exit rate. The assumption behind it was that better UX and performance, thanks to the new search engine, would impact the exit rate.
  • During implementation, though, the team faced challenges with the implementation: dependencies from other teams and the legacy system, lack of reliability of the search engine documentation provided, and the need of a considerable amount of support and collaboration.

What has been done:

  • Improve product requirements by foreseeing and removing roadblocks (ie: reviewing acceptance criteria, defining user flows, testing assumptions, and coordinating with other teams to solve known dependencies before implementation).
  • Build up the team’s ability to reach out to the right channel to get the required support.
  • Coordinate more support for the development team to tackle dependencies.
  • Launch the first version of the two pages with the new search engine.

Availability Filter

Problem:

  • Our customers could not filter in advance for products in stock, leading to frustration when a product was not available.

What has been done:

  • Define product requirements to include markets’ specifics.
  • Support the development team in pinpointing roadblocks and removing them before implementation.

Discover and define solutions for size filtering

Problem:

  • Bike buyers often do not know which size they should buy. Even expert bikers find it sometimes difficult to guess which size would fit them without trying the bike firsthand. We wanted to support our customers in finding a bike that would fit them.

What has been done:

  • User interviews to explore how our customers experience the problem.
  • Interviews with experts to understand how the problem is being handled now.
  • Market research to uncover how our competitors are solving the problem.
  • Collect all info in a customer journey map.
  • Define two solutions that would appeal to our two main target groups (experts and amateurs).

Outline the OKRs for the next period

Problem:

  • Align team milestones with organizational goals, identify opportunities to tackle, propose initiatives to solve them, and identify key performance indicators to track for measuring success.

What has been done:

  • Review company Product Strategy and provide feedback.
  • Negotiate team objectives with C-level and align to overall company goals.
  • Identify opportunities for the area of responsibility (search and inspiration).
  • Ideate solutions to tackle the opportunities and experiments to implement the solutions.
  • Map the opportunities and related initiatives in an Opportunity Solution Tree.

Our Side Quests

As Interim Product Managers, we supported Bike24 Team with multiple missions:

  • Expansion to new countries.
  • Ensure all pages within our domain were ready for the launch in BeNeLux.
  • Google Analytics 4 migration.
  • Support with the migration from GA3 to GA4.

Delivered Outcomes

💡 Support team removing roadblocks in order to successfully implement the new search engine.
💡 Discover, define solutions, and write product requirements for size filters.
💡 Define solution and product requirements for the availability filter.
💡 Outline opportunities and solutions to define OKRs for the next period, negotiate objectives with C-level and align with overall company goals.

In the Client's Own Words

Space Crew of this Mission

VP/Director/Head of Product
Product Management Consultant
Associate Management Consultant

For Clients: When to Hire Us

You can hire us as an Interim/Freelance Product Manager or Product Owner

It takes, on average, three to nine months to find the right Product Manager to hire as a full-time employee. In the meantime, someone needs to fill in the void: drive cross-functional initiatives, decide what is worth building, and help the development team deliver the best outcomes.
If you're looking for a great Product Manager / Product Owner to join your team ASAP, Product People is a good plug-and-play solution to bridge the gap.