When I joined Yahoo! Travel, my main initiative was to gain a better understanding of our new target segment, identified during a recent market research study. After gaining buy-in from our General Manager by presenting information to clarify what we did and didn’t know, and what we needed to know and why, I paired up with a User Researcher to plan, conduct, and develop findings for ethnographic and diary studies to learn more about these passionate travelers.
The findings resulted in multiple projects for the Yahoo! Travel team that I was responsible for prioritizing, including My Travel, and a redesign for the site navigation and the Trip Planner product, all with the goal of acquiring and retaining our most valuable customers.
My Travel was conceived as a central location for users to manage travel research and plans, as well as the start of a travel-specific social network for passionate travelers to share their experiences. The main goal of the project was to leverage the content generated by these passionate travelers to help other travelers in their efforts research and plan their trips.
I worked directly with the Product Team and Visual Designer to develop and implement my UI designs. I also worked with the User Researcher to plan and evaluate findings from usability studies.
I worked with a researcher to conduct card sorting exercises with users to determine the optimal organization for the site to ensure quick and easy access to the desired content.
Based on our research, Passionate Travelers were much more likely to share content about their trips than the average consumer. As part of a larger strategy at Yahoo! to be able to acquire and share great content, the Trip Planner product was updated to increase the creation and sharing of travel experiences via the Trip Journal by this consumer group.
As very senior UX practitioners, a User Researcher and I were tasked with investigating the “deals” space to identify any opportunities to monetize that aspect of shopping. We conducted a number of contextual inquiries with prospective users and developed a business model and concepts to demonstrate how we could drive revenue via deals.
After presenting the research findings and concepts to the entire Yahoo! Marketplace division, I was given the opportunity to lead the product strategy and design of the first social shopping offering at Yahoo! – the Coupon Center. I drove a cross-functional product team to develop this relatively simple product to test user engagement. The preliminary results showed that users were more inclined to share coupons with friends, for example, than making comments. These results were positive, as we knew that sharing a deal was the most solid way to determine its popularity and usefulness, and ultimately acquire and engage new users.