Hotel Website Flow Redesign — Part 2
This is 2nd in our series of posts on Hotel Website Flow Redesign — Part 1 here.
With these goals in mind and armed with a high-level user flow, we decided to meet a few users to test it out. We initially thought of inviting users to redBus office and study their behavior but later felt meeting them at a casual place will bring out real observations. We thus head out to meet users and test our design flow. We were amazed by the enthusiasm as well as the feedback we received from the users! They were quite happy that redBus chose them for the research and were more than willing to meet us, and helped us understand the hotel booking process according to a user and also reviewed the user flow we had. The study helped us understand the choice of our customers and the flow they preferred. For instance, users did not prefer a map-based view of hotel search list on desktop. Users wanted to see hotel images more than hotel description. They wanted to know if a given hotel has free cancellation policy and other amenities.
We wanted our users to go out more, travel more and enjoy more. We also probed users to understand what prompts them to travel. We iterated on our designs multiple times based on the feedback we received from our peers, users, as well as the latest design trends, and travel trends.
Interaction & Visual Design
We also felt that the current redBus website design would not satisfy the demands of hotel and holiday categories as it would be too cluttered if presented with the current website. A more visually intense and vibrant flow is what we wanted. We thus took a number of steps like to create a flat design. Some of the steps that we took are:
- We did away with the existing white header and moved to a red header with a white logo.
- We provided a larger space for the background header image on the home page for us to play with different themes utilizing imagery, video, and illustrations.
- We chose to move the filters on the top and put more emphasis on the search results to help us give us give the scope to iterate on design of search results. We still felt a map-view based search, if shown in the right way, can provide a compelling search experience to a user!
- Since users wanted to view images of hotels before deciding on it, we placed more emphasis on hotel images on the hotel details page.
- For the booking details page, we believed that an accordion styled experience makes sense for the user as it enables faster and seamless booking experience
Even after all these, we still feel that we barely scratched the surface! We believe there is still lot of room to personalize the booking experience especially for redBus target segment. We will continue to iterate and bring out products and design changes that will make the users go “WOW!”
To be contd..
Originally published at blog.redbus.in on January 7, 2016.