View a slideshow of my content strategy for the Trip Itinerary on Google Travel.
Travelers are looking for an easy way to keep track of all their travel plans. The trip itinerary on Google Travel is meant to be that one-stop solution to organize and plan a trip.
An MVP launch only gave travelers a basic chronological list itinerary. The next version needed to support new features and increase the overall page interaction. The question became, how might we better organize trip reservations and inspire travelers to engage with their itineraries?
A content reorganization and redesign that prioritizes the things travelers need at a glance. Things like flight status and hotel check-in times are featured on the collapsed cards. Expanded cards are more clearly actionable and easier to understand.
To get to this solution took many months and iterations. We had some unique challenges, including many stakeholders spread across 4 teams across 3 time zones, 75+ languages ot consider, and the volume of information to organize.
I needed to create a content system for the itinerary cards that worked for each trip state. My first step was to partner with UXR to understand traveler needs and their top Jobs to be Done by trip state. I put them in a chart for quick reference.
Once I knew what was most important to travelers, I could start to prioritize which content to surface first. I created a content strategy doc with content principles to help guide my decision-making process. These principles also helped the team understand why and when certain content is prioritized.
My next step was to partner with ENG to review trip reservation field availability. It was important to prioritize things that would reliably be parsed to the itinerary cards. For example, we’d like to show the flight seat number, but the parse probability was only 25%. The field would appear blank more often than not, so it didn’t make sense to prioritize it.
Next, I did audits of content hierarchy in Google Travel products for a gut check on information architecture. After this research, I created a Content hierarchy trix for UX Designers and ENG partners to refer to when designing and building the new product.
My trix covered over 130 content patterns for Flights, Hotels, Things to do, Events, Restaurants, Car Rentals, and Transit. It prioritized content for collapsed & expanded modules, highlighted parse probability and whether the item was essential or optional, organized what to show or hide by trip state. This helped ENG plug in the right info at the right time.
The UXD and I partnered to brainstorm the design of the modules based on my trix. Seeing it all come together in design helped refine the content. For example, seeing the cards spread out across dates helped us realize that having separate cards for picking up and dropping of rental cars or checking in and out of hotels made sense.
We took a prototype to usability testing. Participants felt that overall, the product was cohesive and useful. They found the tone and messaging to be concise and self-explanatory. As one participant said: “Everything is the right tone. It’s the right amount of text and it’s not overly explained”
Despite launching in the middle of COVID-19, we saw increased engagement from this solution. The new Trip Itinerary now had a clear content hierarchy that’s prioritized to meet user needs. This along with a clean and inspiring redesign produced strong results that resonated with travelers.