Winnie is a marketplace for child care, kids activities and backed by a trusted community of parents and providers.
In the summer of 2018, I was tasked with redesigning Winnie's home feed on iOS.
At this point, the home feed consisted of UGC around parenting discussions which confused users based on App Store reviews.
Users expected to see local data right away but the home feed was entirely focused around content creation and engagement.
Although Winnie had made a big investment to collect local data across different markets, it was not being surfaced in the home feed.
Monetization was also an important consideration because Winnie's revenue came from sponsored search results. This meant that sponsored businesses could also be showcased in the home feed.
My hypothesis was that If I added affordances for place search and discovery to the home feed, Winnie could increase the number of place searches as well as place detail views.
72% vs. 42% of new users completed a local search in their first app session.
This +30% lift reflected that new users could search and discover local places faster, right from the home feed.
Previously a user would have to go to the search tab for such actions.
The number of place detail views did not meaningfully increase because the CTR from search results to place detail stayed flat.
On iOS, search fitlers are hidden behind a button so even though users were creating more searches, they were not seeing
results that matched their intent.
To inform my design decisions, I surveyed a random sample of 1K parents who had used the iOS app in the past three months.
After closing the survey, I exported the email addresses of respondents and matched them with internal user data.
This allowed me to segment responses by location.
A majority of users said their goal in using Winnie was to find local child care (8%) and activities (52%)
which made sense since Winnie's maine value prop is local data.
Only 18% of users said they wanted advice or support from other parents.
This made me realize that I could push down UGC in the home feed since most users didn't find value in it.
In terms of how users wanted to acommplish this goal, a majority said they wanted to use
search queries (14%) and explore a map (26%) to see a ranked list of results.
This meant that shortcuts to create search queries and explore a map could be added above the home feed.
Q: What was your goal in using Winnie?
- Stay informed about events in my area
- Explore child care options – camps, daycares, preschools
- Find a babysitter, nanny, tutor or other service provider
- Find places to go with my kids
- Get advice and support from parents
- Research products for my children
Q: What would be your ideal way to accomplish this goal?
- Plan ahead and view dates on a calendar
- Browse interesting photos and videos
- Receive a personalized email newsletter
- Read expert articles and recommendations
- Using a search box, like Google
- Exploring a map, like Yelp
- Ask a group publicly on a message board
- Ask someone privately via chat
Q: What result would best satisfy your needs?
- Many answers from a group of people
- A ranked list of results to choose from
- One answer from a trusted source
Q: Would you intend to purchase any of the following?
- Tickets for an event or experience
- Membership at a gym or play space
- Individual activities, classes or camps
- Enrollment in a daycare or preschool
- Booking service providers, such as a babysitter or tutor
- Products & gear for kids, such as toys, books and clothes
- I would not spend money
I started off by exploring different ways to display a variety of search shortcuts which served two purposes.
Not only could users see search results faster but they would also understand the variety of local data that was available for search.
Then I delved into different ways to help users discover local places and also manage places that they had previously viewed and saved.
However due to backend engineering constraints, it was out of scope to show viewed places.
In the final design I only used one row of search shortcuts so the feed content wouldn't be pushed too far down.
Below the search shortcuts, I placed a segmented control allowing the user
to toggle between featured and viewed places.