Take the 2-minute tour ×
User Experience Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for user experience researchers and experts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

When designing for a shopping service, the user should be able to specify what they're willing to spend on an item.

Problems:

  • There's no automated way to know what price range on the item, so the entry is essentially free form.
  • Users are bad at estimating prices: numerical input doesn't work
  • Using a slider to classify user priority (e.g. economy, value, performance) leaves too much to interpretation
  • Price ranges may not be granular enough for some users

How would you solve this UX issue?

share|improve this question
2  
A bit confused here: you have an ecomnerce site where the price people pay is decided by them and not you? The only situation I can think of for this is an auction site, in which case you set a minimum starting price. However, your situation doesn't read like one where multiple people bid, just that the buyer picks the price. Is this correct? –  JonW Jun 23 '12 at 1:54
    
@JonW maybe he meant it in a search context –  fdmsaraiva Jun 23 '12 at 13:22
    
@fdmsaraiva: In search context, his assumptions are false. –  dnbrv Jun 23 '12 at 18:42
add comment

1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

By shopping service, I am assuming that you mean a service where the user will enter a product, certain specifications and a price, and then your team will go out and source the product for them.

I think in your case, entering a maximum price they are willing to pay would be the best. Everyone would like to get the cheapest price for a given item (provided we are comparing the exact same item/service), so there isn't much sense in having a minimum price. However, you can improve this by searching Google Shopping and Amazon and perhaps even a few major online stores/retailers in the region you are targetting this service.

This should allow you to provide the user with a general idea of how much the item typically costs, allowing them to entering an appropriate range for the price.

A possible interface could look like this:

mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

Given this, you have hinted to the user how much the item typically costs, and allowed them to enter a reasonable value for your service to work with. You can also build an algorithm to reject unreasonable maximum prices. For example, if the user asks you to source him a Ferrari which typically sells for $500,000, but provides a maximum price of $1, your system can automatically reject that immediately.

If you are not comfortable providing a list of products from third parties like amazon, you can aggregate the prices and process them using an algorithm to result in something like this:

mockup

download bmml source

share|improve this answer
    
Great answer, thanks! We arrived at a similar answer internally and should be putting it into effect in the coming months. –  Raj Jul 12 '12 at 0:34
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.