StayLink is website tailored individuals and families looking to book vacation a property that meets their specific needs. They compete with other web based booking sites in an already saturated market. StayLink focuses on a largely generation X and late millennial customer base that uses the site to book a vacation property. The site’s main feature is that it does not require an app to use it and has a simple booking process.
Design a responsive website for Staylink that will allow users to search for available properties regardless of what device they are on and easily book a property.
Who are the users?
In order to understand user needs, interviews with a variety potential vacation property renters were conducted via Zoom. Finding users was simple as the majority of property bookings happen on-line. The Zoom based interviews allowed me to focus in on their individual needs which formed the primary user group. This group was comprised of families, couples, and solo business travelers looking for unique experience other than a hotel room.
What’s the competition doing?
Compensative analysis was not overly surprising. Property rental sites follow a well established pattern that users have come to expect. Vibro/Homeaway and Airbnb were the prime competitors.
- Must Love dogs
During the pandemic the amount of pet owners has increased. Vacationing with your pet is becoming more regular and users want to see properties that accommodate pets.
- Sights to see
Planning a vacation around specific experiences can present limited rental options. Users want to see what they can experience within reasonable proximity of their rental.
- All by myself
Solo rentals are seeking to “collect” unique experiences but home rentals tend to focus on families or couples.
The design process focused on solving for the paint-points uncovered in the research. Various ways were explored to bring featured content to the forefront of the experience while maintaining common usability patterns.
The initial wireframe focused on establishing a recognizable usability pattern in the hero while addressing the pain points in the area below the hero.
The first unmoderated usability study was conducted via Adobe XD and recorded in Zoom. Participants shared their screens and followed a script. The study revealed that most users were able smoothly complete the booking process from start to finish and use the featured areas to jump to specific search results.
After synthesizing the data from the study I began to construct the high-fidelity prototype. Priority was given to the use of photography across the three main screen sizes. The next priority was the organization of the featured locations and experiences. This included explorations of color and iconography to create a cohesive visual system.
The site gives users a quick and easy way to search based on their personal requirements while also allowing for more finite searches.
While designing the site I learned that some features, while great to have, cannot be readily implemented at launch. However they provide opportunities for an improved UX when it becomes feasible to explore them.