Problem Statement

There are many online real estate agency websites but most of them are not user centred.  Fake properties, Sold property listings, Irrelevant phone calls from agents, Inaccurate property description, unreliable support and service are some of the problems faced by people looking for property in Chennai.

Design goals

To understand user needs and design a responsive web experience that is visually appealing, usable and discoverable.

Design Process

  1. Research(8 hours)
  2. Synthesis(4 hours)
  3. Ideation(4 hours)
  4. Interaction design (16 hours)
  5. Iteration and Implementation (8 hours)

Research

Research goals

Goal #1 To understand what people use for searching for properties? For eg; newspapers, Internet etc

Goal #2 To understand what factors people look into when searching for properties? For eg; Near schools, Mrt’s etc

Goal #2 What features does the competitor website provides? To understand their pros and cons

 

Target groups for Interviews

The main target groups were people looking for properties aged 25-40

 

Competitor Websites

Quickr Homes, 99acres, Common floor for analysing Indian websites

Trulai and 99.co for websites outside India

 

Research Insights for making a user centred real estate website

Research showed that different users had different goals. Apart from the basic features, the key features to be designed were;

  1. Many filter options like nearby schools, mrt’s etc
  2. Showing different amenities nearby the property eg.nearby hospital, supermarket etc
  3. Scheduling site visits online thus saving plenty of time coordinating
  4. Call details available directly without having to login
  5. Options to add notes and compare properties
  6. Accurate and quality description, photos and videos of the property and surroundings.

 

Synthesis and Ideation

The main idea was to have a quick and easy property finding experience.

Interaction design

Branding and Identity was a minimal black and white concept. The website was designed to be uncluttered as study showed that all the websites were too much cluttered and the users found it confusing.

 

Homepage and Map based property page  Homepage with recent searches, properties based on recent searches and featured properties. Homepage leads to the map based property page where users can search properties easily and find out nearby amenities and landmarks. 

Search and filters Map based property search with quick filters (Location, price and type).

Third Party Sign up/Login Shortlisting or scheduling an appointment leads to a Sign up/Login Screen. Third party sign up/login quickens the process and also reduces the number of passwords to remember

Scheduling a Site Visit Site visits could be scheduled which adds to the google calendar and the users can plan their day accordingly

 

Iteration and Implementation

The user testing further refined the search and filters user flow. This helped me build a better prototype that is user friendly. They were excited to see an uncluttered website with quick search and filter options. They felt by Scheduling appointments, comparing properties and adding notes they would be able to make the property finding process with much ease.

Check out the final prototype using this link  https://invis.io/YQJ2856M7BG  or  play the Video to get this experience.

 

Conclusion

The next steps would be to research and implement more features like automating the legal processes to increase the transparency of real estate buying and selling in India.