Adding a Welcome Mat to the "Front Page of the Internet"

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Reddit-logo

Reddit Redesign

Duration

15 weeks

user research, personas, journey mapping, requirements, wireframes, prototype

View prototype

Redesign-Home-Page

I started my research by getting a deeper view into the dynamics and stucture of the site. Older redditors felt abandoned, saying recent changes had oversimplified Reddit to appeal to “Facebook and Twitter” users. As a company, Reddit needs a growing active community to stay profitable. But the new users who join are often disconnected from the wider community, causing them to lose interest.  

Who are Redditors?

My goal was to find insights into how different people used the site in their lives. Due to the size and variety Reddit's audience, there didn't seem to be a reliable way for to get a representative pool of interviewees. Instead I used demographic data to create 10 personas. These gave me a genral idea of who used the site. To figure out why, I matched each one to a random Reddior and read through their post history for "character".

reddit-persona-01

Alien Messageboard

"My friend kept showing me cool stuff, so I made an account two weeks ago. The memes are funny sometimes, I guess. I'm still not sure what the big deal is. 

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Single-purpose tool

Karthik came to Reddit soley to get parts for his PC. He had a bookmark to get directly to that sub — skipping past the memes, news, and everything else. 

reddit-persona-02

Hobbyist Haven

Connection to scattered communities with passionate interests. Ben loves sports... a lot. He meets up with his friends to talk and watch big games. But connecting to the entire fan base for a team or sport also has its perks.

Reddit is many things to different people. Different groups need options targetted at the ways they use the site. New Redditors will be more comfortable if they get a clearer picture of what Reddit is.

UI Design

Redesigning the UI started with quick sketches to explore how information was displayed. Looking at Reddit's currrent layout helped me understand how they currently prioritized different sections of content. After this I created mockups for a new Reddit layout in three different styles. Applying them across existing pages was important to test how they would hold up with large amounts of text.

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New User Integration

Many times during the project, I would think of a feature to  improve Reddit, only to discover it already existed. Despite using Reddit the last five years,  it took a design project to learn about some of its best features. This lack of discoverability hid value from new users, and risked frustrating Redditors before they won the "treasure hunt."

Explore-1

Through the new Explore Page  Redditors are able to  discover more about Reddit’s platform and community at their own pace. 

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Growth and Interaction

Helping new users feel welcome leads to more interaction. Healthy interaction grows community. 

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Visitors are shown Reddit's key values and benefits as to better understand the platform and prompt them to make an account

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Joining a subreddit allows a user to post Welcome Chat where there is less pressure.

Archive and Discoverability

Reddit’s benefits lie in it's library of past information, as much as the newly generated content. Awareness of existing content reduces repetition and gives discussions a space to build from. 

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Memory Lane highlights and reopens popular posts from a community, on the anniversary of the original. 

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Improvements to the Search Page, include more contextual options and use Topics to find communities with related interests.

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Search organized by categories 

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