Case Study: Improving the search experience of an online marketplace is a popular marketplace for buying and selling new and used products all around Bangladesh. It has also expanded its business in Sri Lanka. They have more than 50 different categories and the most prominent of them are Mobiles, Electronics, Vehicles, Property, and Jobs. So far, 20,000 members have opened online shops here. More than 3 lac new ads are published on Bikroy every month. It currently has over 3.5 million monthly visitors.

The Problem

As a large-scale online marketplace, it is necessary to have good search and filter options to find any product. However, several potential problems had been pointed out by some users, regarding the experience of the search journey. Considering this as a hypothesis, it had to be validated in terms of the user’s context and behavior while using it.


To identify the problems of the existing search journey and improve it by following a UX design framework.

My Role

Team lead and UX Researcher.


8 weeks.

Process/ Framework

We followed the Double Diamond design framework throughout the journey.

The double diamond design framework

Discover (Research)

In the discovery phase, we wanted to learn more about the problem and its importance. For that, we ran primary and secondary research.

Secondary Research

For the secondary research, we focused on the existing data regarding the issue. We looked for that information on some platforms like:

  • Play store and App store review section
  • Facebook page/group post & comment section
  • Individual Facebook posts and comment section
Some reviews from the play store

Primary Research

We broke down this part into 2 steps, survey, and interview.

1. Survey

The main goals of this survey were to

  • identify if the problem really exists
  • reach the right participants to understand their contexts regarding the problem they faced

Total survey participants: 179

Some information gathered form the survey


Here is the flowchart of how we identified the right candidates for the user interview:

Survey to Interview funnel

2. Interview

We conducted 2 interviews so far. We tried to understand their problem and the context of using the search and filter. Here are some of the questions we were looking for answers to:

  • What were the contexts for using the search and filter?
  • Were the features enough to achieve their goals?
  • If not, what did they do under these circumstances?
  • What options do they want to solve those problems they faced?

Define (Synthesis)

In this phase, we tried to define the actual problem, discover the possible opportunity areas, and construct an How Might We (HMW) question for a clear direction to the solution.


From the primary and secondary research, we got some valuable insights. Some of them are:

  1. All the participants search directly by typing the product name.
  2. After searching for any product, the side-bar only showed limited filters like location, category, etc. Users were expecting more filters to sort out their desired products.
  3. The ‘sort products by’ filter didn’t let them change its option.
  4. For those who have a budget, there was no pricing filter for sorting.
  5. During the search, when they didn’t get their desired product, they searched again by extended keyword or left the website.

We identified that has the necessary filters but the users were facing difficulties discovering them.

Opportunity Areas

Areas that can be improved

How Might We (HMW)

How might we help the user discover the filters related to the product they are looking for?

Develop (Ideation)

In this phase, we did a competitor analysis and based on this data as well as insights from primary and secondary research, we came up with some ideas for the solution.

Competitor Analysis

As a part of our ideation, we looked for how the local competitors are handling similar or related problems (about how they’re helping the user discover the filters related to the product users are looking for). We also considered what we can adopt from the competitors and implement into the existing journey. Here’s the summary of our analysis:

(This analysis is based on ‘searching products by keywords only’)

Overview of the competitor analysis


We separately explored and brainstormed on some ideas that can help solve the problem we identified earlier. Then we logically debated our findings and hypothesis in order to identify any gaps and overcome them by reiterating.

Here is a sneak peek of our wireframes:

Wireframes of the different ideation

Deliver (Implementation)

In the deliver phase, we implemented our ideas into prototypes and made those ready for usability testing. We analyzed the test data and finalized a solution by iteration.

Design & Prototype

We implemented 2 of our best ideas into the design by following the visual design philosophy of Then we created prototypes to get them ready for the usability testing session.

This is how it looks from the above

Approach 01:

(play the video to get an idea of our 1st approach)

Approach 01: Improving the search experience

Approach 02:

(play the video to get an idea of our 2nd approach)

Approach 02: Improving the search experience

Usability Testing

We conducted 3 usability testing sessions so far. Where 1 of them was the participants from our user research segment and 2 of them were new and had used before.

Some of the questions and tasks for the session were:

  • Find out the product “iPhone 13 pro max” [Task, from Homepage]
  • Select a product category [Task, Search result page]
  • Your budget is BDT 15000, how could you filter the result based on that? [Question, Search result page]
  • How could you sort the result for price low to high? [Question, Search result page]
  • Rearrange the filters based on your priority [Task, Search result page]


Additionally, the participants provided feedback on the functionality and design, which allowed us to improve the solution in a user-friendly manner.


The testing provided us with a good number of valuable insights, and we used those to iterate and gradually come up with a final solution. Though, we were unable to test that because of the time constraint. So, there could be an opportunity for improvement.

Final version

The final version is open if you want to take a look.

Final Version: Improving the search experience


  1. It was challenging to work together efficiently when each team member is spread out across different locations.
  2. We set up a timeline for the entire project and divided this for each step. It was sometimes difficult to maintain.
  3. The majority of survey respondents who were eager to discuss their problems later chose not to do so, which caused us to go behind schedule.
  4. We assumed that our prior participants from the user-interview segment would contribute to the usability testing session. Unfortunately, one of them arrived. It was difficult to decide whom to invite next for the testing.
  5. During the usability testing, one of our prototypes wasn’t working as expected. At that moment it was challenging to run the test efficiently in an alternative way.

Lesson Learned

  1. Instead of their email address, it was necessary to gather the participant’s phone numbers or Facebook IDs to reach them for an interview. Many people don’t regularly read their emails.
  2. It is important to construct the right HMW question, otherwise, it will misdirect the whole ideation and possible solution.
  3. There should be an alternative strategy to recruit participants for the interview and usability testing. It will help when the 1st strategy for recruiting participants will not work.
  4. It’s a must that the prototype for usability testing should be tested multiple times before the testing segment to ensure that it’s working properly.
  5. It is important to study a lot about the product we are working on while redesigning it. Otherwise, we might miss some important insights or can have the wrong idea about some option or feature.

As we are not directly associated with the Bikroy team, there can be many details that we overlooked or didn’t consider. However, it was a wonderful learning journey and we are prepared to acknowledge our shortcomings. Because making a mistake proves that we tried, which is important.

Thank you for making it this far. We sincerely hope you found it informative. Please feel free to leave a remark with your thoughts and get in touch with us if you have any questions.

About the Team

This is a result of the collective efforts of the entire team. Mahmudul Hasan Manik, Mehedi Hasan and Bony Amin played a big role as Visual and UX Designer. Without their outstanding effort and contribution, it wouldn’t be possible.

Read the full article here

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