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I'm creating a site kind of similar to, so I was wondering what the best way to show users which city they are in:

  1. The Yelp way: put two search boxes on the page, one for what your searching for and the other for which city to search for (You can also not just put in a city, but a neighborhood or zipcode). Yelp also displays a "Yelp San Francisco" headline at the top of the container.

  2. Put just one search box on the page ( I think it looks cleaner!) and display a headline in the container saying something like "San Francisco" with a small link saying "Change City" next to it.

Is there any other ways? Which is the best?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

Personally, I'd do something like this:

Yelp-like UX

The reason behind, is that it's likely that your selection of cities at the first time will be limited. If it's not the case, then an open searchbox is better, but with a few cities the issue of cardinality kicks in.

Also, for two cities in a demo of my startup, I even used tabs:

Nearby - my own little startup

That's because it's only two cities. The most important question is, how many cities you have.

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+1 for using location services – DA01 Aug 3 '12 at 20:15
In my case, its national, so a lot of cities...Great answer! – Muhambi Aug 3 '12 at 21:02
Good answer, but your choice to use tabs in the examples is rather unconventional. Tabs are expected to have different content, the only difference between them shouldn't be just the name of the tab. In a case like yours, it makes more sense to have the city selection as part of the form rather than repeat the exact same form in different tabs. – Vitaly Mijiritsky Aug 3 '12 at 21:12
@VitalyMijiritsky: thank you very much :) like this? The main point is that this is an investors' demo page, we might support one more city, but it should shout from far away: hey! we support London and Budapest right now! - that's what the tabs were for visually. We even considered to have two separate subsites for the demo, but this is how it remained. – Aadaam Aug 3 '12 at 21:43
@Aadaam Yes, I think that's much better! The white on faint yellow is kind of hard to read, but in terms of layout I think it's much more appropriate than tabs. – Vitaly Mijiritsky Aug 3 '12 at 21:47

I'd keep it as one search field with some smart filtering. Maybe examples.

[                        ]
examples: "Hot Dogs" or "Beer, New York"
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+1 - great answer, I'd have suggested the same. And the examples really help people to quickly understand they could search for both, location and search term! cool... – Chris Aug 4 '12 at 7:04
Good answer! Thanks! – Muhambi Aug 6 '12 at 17:58

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