The photo viewer is the most important surface of Airbnb’s core product. In fact, 100% of guests who complete a booking have opened and viewed that listing’s photos.
Out of many issues identified, 3 stood out as clear problems for guests and the business:
For people browsing Stays and Experiences on Airbnb, viewing photos is a frustrating experience due to inconsistent UI and small photos.
Maintaining five different photo viewer code bases is time consuming, expensive, and prevents the business from innovating across all photo viewers.
We unearthed useful insights through usage data, inventory analysis, and user research:
I began by sketching out different concepts for desktop and mobile. I chose two promising directions and prototyped these with Principle which I then ran light usability testing on.
My team and I rolled out changes as milestone-experiments:
The first milestone release focused on improvements in how we used screen space on desktop.
By rearranging the layout of the desktop photo viewer, we were able to display vertical photos 40-60% larger and horizontal photos to display 30-50% larger.
Next, I led the effort to make the photo viewer work across all Airbnb tiers: Marketplace, Plus, Luxe, Hotels, Experiences, and Adventures.
Finally, the third release improved entry points to the photo viewer across all tiers.
Along with final visual design, I built prototypes in Principle for Mobile and Desktop.
These helped demonstrate how interactions looked and felt, and were also a resource for our engineers.
The project was a success on all fronts.
In this project, I led a redesign of the itinerary component for a unique type of Airbnb Experience: multi-day Adventures.
In this project I led the creation of a complete design system for all global logged-out customer facing properties on desktop and mobile web.