1st Project: Analyzing a Site(of choice) for Userbility

  • Website URL: https://seattle.craigslist.org/skc/
  • What is your first impression of the site?

First impression is how minimal and simple the interface is, and got a feeling the site does not embrace creative, interactive UI design.

What working?

What works is the very simplistic UI for any user, that only serves the one purpose the site is created for, and that is to offer users a vast online database of classified ads on just about anything.

What is not working?

The site is dated, and looks backwards compared to other e-commerce sites out there, like eBay, Amazon, and OfferUp. The UI maybe is too simple and plain, with monotone content that it looks uninspiring and boring.

Improvement suggestions:

The UI needs a little updating. A little interactive elements like pictures popping up when hovering over texts/ads, more modern template for UI.

  • What is this site about?

The site is an online database of indexed classified ads, that covers jobs, goods, services, and even forums.

What works?

With ads being listed in either one or two words, it is pretty easy to look up an item. Simplistic UI caters for all types of users, from the tech-savvy to the novice.

What is not working?

The main page lacks visual content, to help with fast navigation. Also a tagline would help too solidify the brand or purpose of the site.

Improvement suggestions:

Besides the fact that everyone know what Craigslist.org is, for someone who does not know, there is no visible tagline to go along with the brand name. Something catchy, and straight-forward to compliment the Craigslist.org brand would help.

  • What benefits do you think you will receive from this site?

Benefits are fast access to ads, simple display of content, vast database of stuff, and it’s free.

What works

Ads are well organized by categories, by area, prize, and can even be filtered down to specific details. Sheer size of content, and for free is what makes this site work.

What does not work

All ads are not reliable and sometimes unverifiable, and some are too sketchy to pursue.

Improvement suggestions:

A tighter oversight and vetting mechanism to administer the site. Some kind of assurance for users so they know the ads are posted honestly, and by someone who’s deemed reliable, honest, and safe enough to deal with.

  • Where are the links (primary navigation) to the main sections of the site?

There is no traditional navigation menu, instead clicking on categorized content serve as navigation to a specific ad. Main sections can be ad categories like Jobs or Housing, or they could also be location like county or city.

What works:

Clear, simple and uncluttered content makes it easy to navigate. The search box is visible enough on the upper left of main page.

What does not work:

Text size can be an issue, as some are too small and tight and can be hard to read and select.

Improvement suggestions

Maybe use of hover effects over menus like increase in text/button size, or change in bold color.

  • How can you search this site?

Searching the site is done by 2 ways. One, entering text in the search box, two, by simply navigating through the categorized content by clicking on the content which serve as internal links.

What works:

The many filters available when searching makes it really user friendly. Search by location is key, as distance matters when considering people have to meet somewhere, or travel in order to make the transaction.

Improvement suggestions:

An interactive map showing rough travel distance, or location of where the ad is posted from. Also, pictures can be used alongside categories, for visual cue. This will help to grab the user’s attention faster, to the and makes it faster to search for an item.

  • Where are the links to the most popular content?

This is non-existent, with all categorized content being given equal importance as evidenced by the monotone text through out the front page.

What works:

With all content being treated equal, the user is not distracted from what it is they come to search for.

What does not work:

Lack of current popular trends that are happening maybe pertaining to area of interest, or in the category of the ads. Or just a simple most popular content links, maybe internal or external.

Improvement suggestions:

Additions for popular links or trending jobs links, or an upcoming huge garage sale.

Diagram showing comparison between Craigslist, and Amazon, eBay, and OfferUp.

Craigslist.org UI comparison to Amazon, eBay, and OfferUp
Craigslist.org UI comparison to Amazon, eBay, and OfferUp