Hotwire’s unique selling point is Hot Rate: surplus car and hotel supply that customers buy at a discount without knowing the brand name. Hotwire counters this opacity by providing as much information as possible about the neighborhood and location of the hotel. After replatforming to Angular, we lost the ability to drop hotel pins on the map. As a customer advocate, I fought to put them back in.
From benchmarking and user testing we discovered that customers had questions about hotel locations. We observed customers doing searches for specific places, and not understanding where the hotels was in relation to the result. This was a clear UX need, but I had to convince product owners that it would be a conversion win as well.
Dropping a pin would only tell half of the location story. In order for this feature to work correctly, the pin would have to have a label and that label would have to relate to information on the result card. I came up with a system to show pins for the City Center and specific locations.
The design of this feature involved UI modifications to the map and the search result module. I also had to coordinate efforts with the search team, who owned city coordinates and zoom level. We agreed to increase the zoom level and add the pin drop for a version test.
Prototyping was done at this stage to show how the pin and tooltip would animate into the screen. We determined that quantitative testing was best for this feature so we moved ahead with a version test.
The effects of the test were immediate. Customers immediately began purchasing more hotels that were closer to the city center. Since hotels close to the city center are generally more expensive, our revenue increased. The feature was a UX and conversion win.