I lead the UX research and UX process of the Coup project.
Coup is about driving change in how consumers are shopping for these cars online. Aiming to drive
further efficiencies in the market, benefitting consumers, retailers and manufacturers.
Selling a car can be frustrating, time-consuming and confusing, on top of that, websites with bad UX
for users to valuate and sell their car online can make situations worse. I believe a user journey
should be easy, fast and seamless from start to finish for a great UX, so that users won’t have to
think. This is the aim of every user flow on any website.
I aim to improve the way consumers are shopping for cars online by radically changing the UX. Coup,
is a leading platform for selling cars that take away the stress customers have in the purchasing
and selling process. Aim to drive further efficiencies in the market, benefiting consumers,
retailers and manufacturers.
This case study on Coup explores the value of UX, and specifically, how consumers can find where
they can get a valuation for their car that leads to selling their car from the homepage.
PAIN POINTS - ASSUMPTIONS
Selling a car in general
The way people sell their cars can be a very painful and long process. Selling privately includes
advertising, viewing, interacting, part-exchanging for less money and being under pressure. Selling
to third party companies could potentially result in lower sales with poor customer experience.
Selling a car on Coup
User experience could be improved a whole lot more to help users through the process of getting a
valuation and selling their car. The valuation feature isn't clear and prominent on the current
homepage, especially on mobile.
I ask myself what if I make the process that much easier and a better experience, would that
encourage users to change their car more often? What are people’s general feelings about selling
their car? What is the process of selling their car? What do people think of selling their cars to
third party companies? These are some of the questions I needed answers to.
With the questions I had in mind, myself and the squad (consisting of front-end and back-end
engineers and a product owner) conducted an infinity mapping session to identify what are the key
things/actions that customers do in order to sell their cars and to see what are the main problems
on the user journey. We then organised the post-it notes into themes and prioritised the processes
to understand what are the most important steps for customers when selling cars. For example, the
immediate first step is conducting research.
Defining the goals will help me find out what I am trying to do and learn; what am I trying to
achieve within the valuation process. I reflected on the notes from the interviews and usability
testing to collect data that answer the questions. To take on the problems, I focused on the lean UX
approach of 'think it, build it, ship it and tweak it'.
Research questions - I wanted to
What are the customer's pain points, needs, and goals when selling a
What does the customer's processes look like when selling a car?
How are customers currently using the website to value their car?
What the customer think Coup offers them (to see if the basic concept
of the site is clear)?
What do customers think about selling their car to a third party
Who did I need to learn this from?
To be able to understand this, I needed to speak to users who had experience, who are in the process
of selling their car or are thinking of selling their car.
How did I use the data I've gathered?
The data was used to help identify the pain points users have when going through the valuation
process and to find the solutions to make the process a greater user experience so that users have
the confidence to move forward in either selling their car or to browse cars on the website.
OKRs (OJECTIVE KEY RESULTS)
Increase conversion – sell above 86 cars a month
Increase registration – returning users
I put together a user story with the goal in mind, that’s to make the process of getting a valuation
on a car a much more smooth and enjoyable process. This is to also help me refer back to the
problems I am trying to solve.
As a user, I would like…
a way to help me get a valuation and sell my car easily
without the long and painful process.
This way, I can save time and money and have the confidence
to search for a new car knowing that I can sell my car easily and stress-free in the future.
User interview - The purpose
User interviews helped me understand what the user thinks and feels, to empathise with them. This
gives me a bigger picture to identify the pain points and map out the requirements for the feature.
Doing so helped me gain an understanding of the emotions and body language that adds more details to
Usability testing - The purpose
The purpose of this session was to identify the problems users encounter when they are going through
the selling process and to find out further how they feel about it. By creating a list of scenarios
for users to consider, I was able to reveal important information relevant to the subject we were
With the script planned, I asked participants to look around the homepage and see what they make of
it; what they think they could do on here, what the site is and who the site is for and so on. I
also asked participants to complete different tasks related to how they might go through the
valuation journey. The scenarios included helping a family member to get a valuation for their car,
a recommendation from a friend and applying damage for a more accurate valuation. The scenarios
followed up with multiple-choice questions.
I added tracking to record the current flow of the valuation journey as well as on the homepage
using Hotjar and Adobe Target to identify how users interact with the product. This was to
understand what I can learn from the recordings.
I conducted the user interviews with 5 people, tagging the keywords according to themes that came up
often from common answers. This was to help me categorise, classify and organise the data in a way
that generates insights and action. See example below:
Question - Tell me about the last experience of selling your
car? What was the process?
Usability testing - Homepage banner
From the research gathered, we identified the pain points many users have going through the flow.
Some would decide to leave after several attempts within the process. Content and flow of the
valuation journey was also found to be confusing on mobile (according to data, 80% of the users
browse the coup website on mobile), and the most difficult to use.
All users went to the hamburger navigation menu to start the valuation process, which took some time
to find except for 1 user. On mobile, the valuation feature is hidden behind the hamburger menu (as
well as another banner towards the bottom of the page). Therefore, it required users to tap twice to
find the feature hidden behind the menu, and to scroll down the page to see the other valuation
The valuation banner (towards the bottom of the page) copy wasn’t clear and the banner didn’t stand
out enough. From the findings, some users saw the banner but didn’t click on it due to the
inconsistency of copy within the banner; they weren’t sure if it was to valuate, sell or just for
finding out how much the car is worth.
Usability testing - Valuation process
The majority of testers successfully completed the scenarios going through the journey, however most
of the testers got stuck on the last page (valuation) trying to book an appointment to sell their
car. Some would gave up at that point. Learning how testers use the website has helped me gain
valuable insight to analyse the data.
The research validated my initial assumptions of pain points users have when getting a valuation for
their car. From the findings, the usability issues are clear. The homepage banner needed to be
incorporated above the fold somehow, and the focus on the valuation process is on the last page and
not the whole journey.
After analysing the data from the UX research lab, I facilitated a workshop with the squad to
understand what we had learnt so far from the users. During the session, I presented the progress
made so far with the research and identified the pain points from conducting the user interviews and
usability testing. We were ready to move onto the next steps of build it, ship it and tweak it.
If we… allow customers to find the valuation feature and
make the user flow combining with registration a much better, quicker and easier user
Then… we increase customer
experience, easier access and reduce drop-off to the valuation journey…
So that… conversion and
registration is increased and customers see Coup as the convenient companion when getting a
valuation on their car. This will result in returning customers and encourage advertising through
word of mouth for Coup.
The front-end team within the squad worked on the quick fixes to improve the current experience that
were identified during the usability testing session.
I then facilitated a 1 week design sprint to work towards the new and improved experience, using the
structure of the research I gathered. The five days involved defining hypothesis, research (A/B test
data, heatmaps, competitor analysis, current data, user tests etc), ideation, prototyping, script
planning, remote/lab testing, insight analysis, present ﬁndings and iteration. This then led to
discussions with cross functional collaboration and a launch plan for MVP.
This helped me to achieve my goals and get the MVP out there to get it to the hands of users, and
gather feedback from it, then iterate.
I asked the squad to come into the Monday’s workshop with research and each present research of the
websites they had chosen. To talk about what’s cool, how might we do it better, what’s not cool,
etc. We wanted to find out the best ways to improve the website. With the question in mind we
started sketching out components that we liked from the research and annotated them for reference.
With the research gathered from each person, the squad went away sketching out ideas and regrouped
to talk about the sketches. Then we further defined the ideas with the Crazy 8’s method and each
person voted on what they thought would produce the best outcomes on hitting the OKRs.
During the workshop, the squad voted on the best ideas and I took the chosen sketches to ideate
further digitally. I mocked up three versions of how to best display the valuation banner above the
fold, getting other squads from the wider business to dot vote on what they thought worked best.
Printing the wireframes and sticking them on a meeting room wall, I provided the teams with dot
stickers, post-it notes and sharpies to ask me any questions they had.
The other squads voted and provided feedback on the three ideas. Therefore, I went away to further
iterate and did another round of voting. This time, I wanted to get thoughts around copy within the
Myself and the squad prioritised the outcomes and came up with many solutions to the problems users
have navigating through the valuation process. The usability testing results identified that the UX
could be improved with more sign post messaging to guide the user through to the final destination.
Agreeing as a team, we narrowed the solutions down for the MVP and turned the problems into
questions for how we can solve them. I decided to frame the problems into ‘How Might We…’
1. How Might We… inform people
about how long the process will take?
2. How Might We… show them how
many stages there are and how many are left?
3. How Might We… make the
valuation page much easier to understand?
Bringing the team together with the design sprint, I decided to use Miro, the online collaborative
whiteboard platform, to document the process of the design sprint. Putting the Miro board together
helped me document, add ideas and comment as the project progressed. This also kept stakeholders
updated along the way. The columns acted as a timeline to indicate the process and iterations, from
research on the left to initial and Crazy 8’s ideation going towards the right.
UNMODERATED USABILITY TESTING
As part of the design sprint, I conducted usability testing on the valuation page because it had
many iterations and features added (from the feedback in the research lab), I wanted to quickly test
the waters and gather feedback to iterate further.
Presenting the results to the squad, I demonstrated that the majority of users successfully
completed each task except for two users on one of the tasks. The overall usability score is 91,
which shows users are interacting with the features. It helped me verify the solutions were
effective and to see how the prototype has helped users’ needs. The example below highlights the
outcome from the usability testing with the scenarios/tasks given. If users are able to understand
the prototype wireframes then hi-fidelity designs will be more intuitive when implemented.
Scenario - Time to sell
You land on the valuation page after entering the details of your vehicle. You're very happy with
the valuation of your car and you're really interested in getting rid of it for that price.
find where you could go to do this.
The storybook library
Using Storybook allowed me and the teams to design and build UI components effectively and
consistently. With the patterns and components that make up the brand of the product, piecing
the UI components together for hi-fidelity designs made it easier.
By stitching the UI components together, we were able to see the look and feel and how the UX worked
together. This creates opportunities to refine further ready for development. I A/B tested the
designs with variations to get feedback and iterate further.
Introducing the new valuation banner above the fold will increase visibility to guide users to the
valuation process for the first MVP. I will continue to iterate further according to the data I will
be tracking and monitoring.
Working together as a squad, we broke down the design into tickets accordingly, which helped
prioritise the tasks in greater detail. With further iterations made, I am confident to build and
test further as well as track the data to further iterate and validate.
Progress bar - shows how many stages there are and how many are left.
Indication how long the process will take.
Edit feature inside valuation box - clearly shows users where to edit
their car details to update their valuation.
Two CTA buttons - to guide users to sell their car and to guide users
to view the cars we have for sale.
A ‘further details about your vehicle’ accordion and to move under
the two CTAs
Don’t show the booking an appointment feature until ‘Sell your car’
CTA button has been selected.
Desktop should be the same as mobile with one central column and the
same button functionality.
Importance of Communication
Communication is an important part of good design and no matter how amazing the product is, if
people can't use it then they will simply leave or stop using it. The challenge is to use
human-centred design to create great results and make the feature easier to find and use for a
more enjoyable user experience. The main objective is to make the feature searchable, successful
and that customers won't have to think and return back to the site.