We didn’t design in a vacuum. User testing played a major part in the design process, helping us gauge how well we were meeting users’ expectations.
To test the new design, we conducted a 5 second test in which users were given a snapshot of the front page for 5 seconds, then asked a series of questions about what they thought the site was about, what types of feelings it conveyed, and what they noticed about it.
Our first iteration yielded the following results:
We knew we were on the right track with the simple approach and the emphasis on search. But users thought it was too blue and too plain.
Our second iteration got better response:
With just a few more tweaks, the design was ready.