Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Simplifying Search

Just so you know we're listening to you, the users of YouGoDo out there...

It's come to our attention that the main search page isn't as easy to use as it should be (sorry about that). Looks like I wasn't paying enough attention in my human–computer interaction lessons when I was at uni all those years ago!

It seems some users get confused when searching for a location or activity type and multiple choices are thrown back at them. In such cases the user needs to clarify what they actually wanted before clicking the search button again. As best we can make out - some users see that something has happened on the page and so assume the activities shown will be what they are looking for and become a little confused when they see the same ones shown as before. This is obviously a flaw in our design rather than user error.

Below is an example from the search page that causes confusion. Multiple matches have been found for both "Christchurch" and "Surf", clarification being required for each before the search can commence:

We've re-designed the location and activity type selection process to something (hopefully) more intuitive and that users are more likely to be familiar with from other sites. Before we introduce the new selectors to the main search page we're actually beta testing the functionality on the home page first. It may seem like a strange place to beta test, but in reality most of our traffic is to our search page so if there's a problem with the new selectors it won't matter so much if things go wrong - people will still be able to find what they're looking for!

Below is an example of the more intuitive selectors in action:

So what do you think? We'd love you to have a play and give us some feedback or suggestions about the new selectors!

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