Bridging the social gap between agents and consumers.
How might we improve user acquisition right as customers land on the HOMEiZ homepage?
January - March, 2019 (3 months)
UX/UI Designer (Entrepreneurial)
Prototyping, A/B Testing, Wireframing, Visual Design, Research
By utilizing the split-screen design, the homepage provides users a simple sign-up journey while showcasing the real estate search experience, which better communicates HOMEiZ' objectives and showcases the impactful offerings to both the agents and the consumers.
The real estate social networking start-up innovates the way agents and consumers interact to buy, rent, and sell properties. The differentiation is in their focus to combine social network elements to the search experience.
Understanding the business needs as well as the customer pain points, I touch on every aspect of the design process to address the problem space.
"Hey, Cheyenne: The majority of our users who reach the main page don't sign up. They interact and navigate into deeper parts of the site but how can we increase our ability to gain user acquisition?"
With an overflow of information, users engage with the landing page and within HOMEiZ' site but do not go through the sign-up process. Clarifying the challenge, our goal was to improve acquisition rates.
First, I studied the site's current homepage, evaluated its heuristics, and took note of its extended scroll and content overload. Challenging these design decisions through competitive analysis, I analyzed the top three social network homepages and two renowned real estate portals by comparing their page layouts and studying their objectives to better formulate a successful solution.
As referenced, the diagrams suggest that a split-screen is an effective element for social network homepages to boldly state their objectives and to direct users to sign up to their platform. Layouts for real estate portals also focus on stating objectives but have more interest in users engaging with property searches.
Understanding the differentiating factors of the two, I presented the insights to advocate how we might achieve acquisition goals by to successfully and cohesively utilize both layouts to create a 2-in-1
homepage design for HOMEiZ.
After aligning the business objectives, I analyzed the different user groups that would frequently engage on the site. This includes agents that need a single axis point to communicate with all their clients and consumers who are too busy or unfamiliar with how buying or listings work.
Mike, Residential Real Estate Agent
Negotiates and arranges real estate transactions
Loves helping people find their new home
Wants an easier way to network with clients and other agents
Communication with clients is often scattered
Bridgette, Home Buyer (Consumer)
Recently moved to Los Angeles and looking to buy a home
Works as a certified nurse practitioner
Wants to find her dream home for her family
Too busy with work and is unfamiliar with the area
Richard, Home Seller (Consumer)
Lived in Los Angeles for 35 years
Looking to downsize home after retiring
Wants to sell his home at a reasonable price
Unsure how to put his home up for listing
Next, I created various ideations of a 2-in-1 homepage with a focus on gaining users and providing property search options. From the sketches, I built out lo-fi wireframes, moving forward with the simplest design.
Represented is a selection of the wide range of wireframe sketches I illustrated. Following, this single lo-fi wireframe is a representation of many wireframes that were later mocked for A/B testing.
To validate assumptions from the competitive analysis, we conducted two sets of A/B Testings: one, we tested other layouts apart from the split-screen design, and two, we compared several different split-screen layouts. As a result, we found overwhelming success in the split-screen homepage.
First Round of Testing
We started by testing the split-screen design against other types of homepages, including both a search focused and sign-up focused design.
Second Round of Testing
Next, we focused on testing out variations of the split-screen design, some variations include graphics, a single-colored background, and more.
User sign-ups were higher with the split-screen design, reaching 12% above the search properties design and 4% above the sign-up homepage.
I then identified the visual constraints to be applied to the layout, adhering to HOMEiZ' specific color schemes and rounded shapes to stay consistent with their trustworthy, transparent identity.
The split-screen homepage design provides consumers and agents a simple, explicit sign-up journey without abrading the search experience, communicating their dual objective as a real estate social network site. This clarity encourages users to join as an official HOMEiZ member.
This project with the HOMEiZ team challenged my collective research and my layout design abilities. I took my time to understand how to create a compelling balance between the real estate search experience and the user login journey while gathering my research from the best sources. Through this design process, I would have liked to conduct user interviews to understand why users favor one design over another; leveraging the opportunity to develop a research study, the qualitative data would have helped in making better data-driven decisions.
Through the collaboration with this team, I've learned how to challenge my design knowledge through the scope of real estate which led to an increase in acquisition.
*This project reflects work that has been shipped then later reverted to the previous homepage design.