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I'm working on a site where it offers online service for two types of users ("service providers" and "service seekers"). Users are required to signup with the type of profile they belong to. We are in the process of designing home page and we want to make it clear for both the parties and encourage signup.

So below are my questions;

  1. Is it a good idea to have two call-to-action signup buttons in the home page? (one for service provider signup and another for service seeker sign up, with two different colors)

  2. Other option is to have a single call-to-action signup button which leads to a page with an option to select profile type. Is this a good idea than having two buttons?

  3. Do you have any examples of this type of home pages?

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Is one of the options (much) more common? For instance Monster shoves off their Employer section almost out of view because they have waaaaay more employees signing up than employers. Two options with equal weight on the same page is always going to be confusing. –  Ben Brocka Apr 24 '12 at 13:12
    
Another question to consider - can a single user be both a service provider and a service seeker? If the answer yes - how common is this? –  Yosef Waysman Apr 24 '12 at 13:40
    
Thank you for the quick replies. @Ben Two options are equal weight. The client wants the same weight being put to both the options. –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 13:52
    
Yosef No. a one can either be a service provider or service seeker. That's a big relief :) –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 13:55
    
Do the numbers back them up on this? Don't give them equal weight because it's "fair", give them equal weight because it makes sense. –  Ben Brocka Apr 24 '12 at 14:04
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3 Answers

Take a look at Stack Overflow Careers.

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The main page clearly indicates it's for job seekers and there is a fairly prominent "for employers" link which takes you to the employers page.

enter image description here

This is clear who the target audience is and again has a link back to the job seekers page.

So - who are going to be the majority of your users? If there is a clear distinction have their home page as the main page and a link to the others. If there isn't a clear distinction have a single home page that directs to each target audience page. You could use a cookie to remember what type of user they are and return them to the appropriate default page next time they visit.

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great example and and useful info. Thank you very much. –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 15:48
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If Both the parties are equally important, it would be better to sign them up differently.May be you can show icons instead of buttons if that looks awkward to show two buttons or large links.

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Good idea. But the problem there is the demography we are trying to address is non tech savvy. So they will look for the word "sign up" and if they don't see it there is a high chance of them getting confused. But icon with the word "sign up" might work. Will take a note :) –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 14:08
    
yes u got it right in that case! cheers:) –  sree Apr 24 '12 at 14:12
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It is very unlikely that the best UX is to have one page marketing to both segments. You should separate these users as soon as possible into different sites that cater to your separate market segments. In fact, it is best to treat them as two completely different sites; have your advertising go to different landing pages, and provide no large overt links between the two.

As an example, Amazon vs CreateSpace... the difference between buying a book, and wanting to sell a book. I bet you've never heard of CreateSpace... but if you want to sell a book, it's one of the top results on Google.

But if completely separate sites are not feasible, separate the users quickly... 'I want to Sell Stuff', 'I want to Buy Stuff'. Big links that take users to different pages immediately, with those pages describing and selling to the different types of users. Those pages can have Signup links specific to the type of user they are for.

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Don't really want to have two separate home pages for the same site do we? Anyway do you have any examples where it's been separated? –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 14:03
    
Amazon is a huge company, and not everyone can afford the creation of completely separate giant sites, but that doesn't change the fact that different market segments have different needs, and rarely should they have a single page to convince both to sign up. –  Myrddin Emrys Apr 24 '12 at 14:14
    
Sounds like a good idea. Will discuss this with the client. Thank you very much. –  Hasanga Apr 24 '12 at 15:50
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