What is it An interaction re-design for the Marktkraam iPad app
NOTE: This is an older, self-initiated ‘project’.
The Marktkraam app for the iPad is a good alternative to the great Dutch trading website Marktplaats. However, I’ve experienced a number of interaction or functional assets that could be improved, mainly in the advertisement (detail) page.
But let me start by saying that the Marktkraam app is a fine application and I especially like the feature to display the most recent ads of user-selected categories. This re-design merely reflects my personal views about the functionality and how it would be an even more user-friendly app for me.
Sorting: The ads list lacks a proper sort-by functionality. The user should at least be able to sort by price, date and distance. The current sorting is by date only.
Use of language: The language is not consistent throughout the app. English and Dutch on the buttonlabels are used inconsistently. Also, some buttons have English labels whereas the related page has Dutch titles. For example: Favorites – Favorieten, Search – Zoeken.
Icons: Some icons on buttons are too ambiguous and fail to convey their purpose. Although some well-known iOS-related are being used, they seem to trigger different actions than I would expect them to do. I think it’s better to accompany the icons with short textual labels. The text and icon could then be styled as a subtle button with the same color as the background, distinguishing it with a thin light border and a light gradient.
Sidepanel: The sidepanel (the ads list) sits on the right side of the screen by default. I would suggest an option to place it at the left side as well, either by dragging or via an option in a settings screen. Left-handers would appreciate the effort.
Ads list: In the ads list there is a right-arrow next to each ad, while the ad page itself is loaded at the left side of the ad list. This would make sense if the sidepanel would have been on the left side. But even so, I think the arrow could be omitted entirely.
Other things that bother me is that the ad title is being cut-off to allow the date to be displayed, the lack of the location (of the selling party) and the general crowdyness of each ad block in the ad list. I would strongly suggest to show the full title, because people generally scan through lists to find something interesting. The ad description can be omitted as well. The most important content in athe ad blocks should be: title (with bottom whitespace), price, date and location/distance. Having said that, I think it wouldn’t hurt to show a tagline or short(!) summary of the advertised item. But since Marktkraam relies on Marktplaats’ data, this is something that should be incorporated on Marktplaats.nl first.
Privacy: Recently viewed ads cannot be cleared, something a user should be able to do when the tablet is shared among multiple users. There is a ‘Reset’ button in the searchpage, but it only seems to clear category and subcategory searches.
Images: The carousel style image viewer does not appeal to me, to put it boldly. I would suggest to show the images as they are and able the user to swipe left and right to show previous and next images. An addittion would be to include a vertical thumbnail list on the side to indicate the currently viewed image and allow quick navigation. When the user taps on the magnifying glass, the image could be displayed fullscreen, either as large as possible or with the same controls mentioned earlier.
Below are some of my re-design sketches:
Δ Re-design of the main ad page
Δ Ad page scrolled
Δ Popover: Ad filter
Δ Popover: More ads by ‘salesman’
Δ Imageviewer in lightbox (loads when the user taps the magnifying glass)
Δ Screenshot of original Marktkraam iPad app
The original Marktkraam iPad app can be downloaded here.