Wikibuy is an automated shopping assistant—in the form of a browser extension—that helps online consumers make informed purchasing decisions by taking on the burden of “shopping around” for the best deal.
To help find the best deals, Wikibuy relies on the shopping activity of its 2 million users. When a user discovers the best price—or coupon—on a particular product, the rest of the Wikibuy community has that insight available for everyone's benefit. Alongside the crowdsourced data, Wikibuy crawls the big retailers, such as Amazon, Walmart, and Target, cross-referencing deals to ensure that the user is making the best purchasing decision. The aspect that makes Wikibuy functional is that it delivers value automatically, without the user having to initiate it.
Why this is really good UX:
- A principle of usable design is the reduction of a user's workload. Wikibuy does this with supportive automation that takes on the unwanted and repetitive task of price-checking a product across multiple retailers to make informed online shopping easier, faster, and more straightforward.
- The process of using Wikibuy is self-evident—it can be used without instructions—because of the clear and timely notification that is embedded in the user's shopping experience. Relevant information is delivered to the user in real time, which means that the user does not have to think about how to use Wikibuy because it does all the work.
- Wikibuy visually represents the step-by-step process of trying coupon codes because users are skeptical of processes that happen too quickly or are invisible. This tactic is known as “artificial waiting.” It makes users feel safe and helps them comprehend the work that goes on behind the scenes, increasing their perceived value of the service.