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I am working on a platform with 2 type of users, transporters and those sending their goods.

Our biggest concern is the user experience, reason why everyone is opting for what we call "one profile". Should we have one registration form for both users (including the same level of verification?) or a different one for each user?

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    we need some details like, what kind of users are they? (as in, are they hierarchical, with the one having more privileges than the other?) and does the Type 1 user provide more/less details for registration than Type 2? – Savv Jul 22 '15 at 12:56
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    Are the registration fields considerably different between the two types of users? – Mayo Jul 22 '15 at 13:18
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    Is it possible in any scenario for one user account to be both a transporter and a person sending goods? – DasBeasto Jul 22 '15 at 17:15
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    It depends on the form and the users. – DA01 Jul 23 '15 at 3:41
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One form would not necessarily mean a better user experience. A better user experience can sometimes be defined as a "just right fit" for the user. If your user needs to experience certain fields and messages to experience this "just right fit", then you may need two forms after all.

On your site: You could have one link on the homepage that says "Sign Up", and the subsequent page could have two links, one for transporting goods and one for transporters. Then their individual experiences could be customized.

See for example UPS's website: To send a shipment, UPS has a form that is detailed and takes information just for a shipment: https://www.ups.com/uis/create?loc=en_US&WT.svl=PNRO_L1 But for tracking and monitoring shipments, they have an entirely different feel on their page: https://wwwapps.ups.com/mcdp?loc=en_US&WT.svl=PNRO_L1. See this page and their tracking page.

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Do a quick comparative analysis

I'd start by checking how other companies handle this problem, in adjacent spaces. For example, ride-share software apps such as Uber obviously need to sign up transporters and people who want to be transported. But if you already know that you need one form, then read on....

One starting point, two paths

In the profile, you want users to identify whether they:

  • transport goods
  • send goods

You're going to want to ask users some questions that are the same—such as their contact information—and some questions that are different—such as whether they can transport frozen good or heavy goods, so that you can better pair up the two. (My assumption: your intent is to pair up transporters with people who have goods to transport.)

You can start off with the same questions, and then provide a different path depending on the information that a user enters. (Hopefully, the number of users who both provide transport and use transport is so small that you can ignore them for now. Eventually, can decide whether to send them through one path, then the other, so they complete both paths—but you probably want to postpone that until you're serving the largest groups and have revenue coming in.)

Recommended: Paper prototyping to test the design

Be sure to test this with people outside the development team and outside the company—people who transport good and who have goods to transport. This is something you can easily test with a paper prototype. This is incredibly simple and very useful way to get feedback before anything is ever coded/programmed—so very inexpensive to modify. If the device is likely to influence usability, try a hybrid method, but this is more work.

Hope that helps.

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