User Research · UIUX · Mobile
Carousell Property
Re-designing the Carousell Property page to encourage discovery and improve the search and browse experience for home buyers, sellers, tenants or landlords.
Jan — Mar 2019 · 3 months

Background
Carousell is Southeast Asia’s leading classifieds marketplace with Property as one of the highest value category. As property is a relatively new vertical on Carousell, it is perceived to be unreliable for property search. In this redesign, we hope to drive greater engagement with our property seekers and users

Role
I initiated the user research of this project while involving the marketing team. I was the product designer from execution to launch, leading the prototyping efforts and usability testing

My process

Personas
To gain a deeper understanding of users on a home-seeking journey, we conducted user interviews and developed 3 primary personas.

Uncovering our users’ wants and needs helped us to empathise with their difficulties in the home-seeking journey

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Goal
To drive engagement, we must first build trust and inspire confidence among our users in their home-seeking journey.

We arrived at a goal to anchor the team and project;

The most trustworthy place for home-seekers to find the most variety of information and transaction options


Synthesis
Post user interviews, our synthesis of users' pain points revealed recurring themes. I led a brainstorming session internally with business stakeholders and engineers to ideate around our personas and challenges.

Key observations
1. Poor visual hierarchy
2. Difficult search navigation results to inaccurate search results
3. Irrelevant content for target users

Key insights
1. Property users are power searchers—primarily utilises the search bar
2. Ineffectiveness of existing component to encourage discovery or exploration

How might we design for a clearer home screen navigation and help users efficiently arrive at their desired listing page 

Desired outcome
1. Clear navigation for different intent users
2. Establish clear purpose for each page
3. Intuitive search experience

1. Home screen navigation

We iterated on homescreen hierarchy to test understanding of content and observe their navigation patterns

Most users enter with an intent; either to buy or rent.


Aligned to users' mental model, the new design introduces 3 main categories to channel our users according to their intentions—arriving at a targetted page specific to their rent/buy needs.

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Other explorations
Diving deeper, we explored potential features such as market trends, saved searches and continuing one's search. As the engineering efforts could not fit into the product timeline, we deprioritized and kept it for our next improvement.

2. Search experience

To get the most accurate search results, aside from improving the search algorithm, I looked into users' interaction with search filters.

If we could guide users to choose filters accurately, would the results be more desirable?


Firstly, I explored how visual cues can differentiate content to efficiently process information.
Secondly, I proposed a multi-select interaction that always informs of users’ inputs for greater clarity to refine accordingly.

The several tweaks in UI helped enhance the overall search flow.

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3. Brand alignment

The project ran in parallel with Carousell’s rebranding exercise. We purposefully chose the darker tones of our brand colours to convey a more mature and trustworthy brand.

4. User flow

Previously, search results are often inaccurate and users wasted time applying several filters. In the new design, we effectively reduced an additional step  

By improving the home screen navigation and search experience, the redesigned outcome saw a major improvement in helping users arrive at their desired, specific results.

The new guided navigation narrows down their search with each selection.

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Impact
After launch, Carousell property saw a steady increase in Weekly Active Users (WAU).
1. More than 25% increase in average WAU
2. From an average of 60K to 80K WAU
3. Exceeded our goal of 10% increase to 70K WAU

The revamped product also helped to drive more traffic into our property blog. In 2019Q2, the marketing team achieved a hit of 100K page views, representing a 3X quarter-on-quarter growth.

The new property homescreen benefited both the product and marketing team



Reflections

Through this project, I saw the advantage of involving the marketing team early. Having previously conducted an in-depth market research and analysis, the insights and knowledge that they brought to the table has helped drive the synthesis sessions.

Have I not leveraged on their expertise, I would surely have missed out on some design opportunities.

What could be better?
1. Greater In-depth research into our 3rd user group, investors.

2. Understanding expectations and timeline.
In the early phase, we tried to do too many features that could not fit into our expected timeline

3. Priortise the search experience
We found that the search journey was critical. However, the scope of this project could not execute a complete redesign of search. Looking back, instead of pushing for minor tweaks, we should have pivoted to solve for search.

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