What is CraigsList you may ask? CraigsList is an American classified advertisement website which was built in 1995. It's an platform for consumers to search and buy products and services similar to platform like Trade Me and Ebay.
I started this personal project during my free time thinking “What can I do to improve the User Interface for CraigsList?” My main goal for this project is wanting to redesign CraigsList to have a modern look and feel.
CraigsList was launched in 1995 which is 24 years ago and has no improvement of user interface since. Comparing the old internet browsing against today, there are a huge difference in terms of how people browse and use internet in the 21st centuries.
My Goals to accomplish for this project
Planning and coming up with solutions where users will feel like coming back and use the website.
1. UI elements needs to be changed as it needs to have a new look and feel to the website for users.
2. Give some breathing space on the website as the current website feels too much information are cramming together.
3. Better navigate within the website for users so that they would have a better experience overall when using CraigsList.
How was my approach to this problem?
For every project, there are always different design process that I would use depending on the situation and time constraint for the project.
Analysing the problem and getting an understanding on what I am trying to solve and how I could make an improvement to help our users. Then moving onto the research phase, where I do market research on who are our competitors and how we can make our product better by adding additional features that our competitors don’t have and being unique at the same time. User research are also important in the research phase as well. By interviewing the users would provide a qualitative insight on how the users think about our product and how I can make it better for them.
By draw out a user journey and user map for this phase is helpful, as it is important for us to know what our users would do when using our product/service.
The Sketching Phase
Brainstorming all the ideas that I have on a piece are always useful for me as I can analyse the different ideas that I had or remove the ones that I think wouldn’t be useful. I then like to do a quick sketch on a piece of papers of multiple options for the solutions before moving onto wireframing. For this project I used Adobe XD as my go to wireframing tool.
The Design Phase
First page is the homepage of CraigsList. Second page is the car+truck section when a user click to view a particular car they would like to purchase.
Here’s the comparing before and after the redesign of CraigsList:
I simplified everything with common used fields and get rid of the less used fields when searching for a home. By having simple fields allow users to navigate quickly and also there is no guessing involved when clicking on something.
Another common problem that a lot of old websites like this is that people don’t use the left hand sidebar very often or something never even touch it before. So my main focus for this is to move the side bar information to the middle so it’s easier for user to see when they are browsing for cars or trucks.
Overall Learning Experience
I have managed to accomplish everything that I have planned from the beginning of this project. This is an interesting project to tackle on as there are many things, I can still find to improve on but due to time constraint with work and family, I am unable to spend much more time for this project that I would like to. Things I would like to improve on for this project would be getting high fidelity prototype ready and testing it with users. This way the users would be able to provide valuable feedback on the design and solutions that I have made.