5 Sites, 1 Task: Explain How It Works

DVD, CD and video game swapping sites are becoming popular again. Web-app catalog site Simple Spark lists 10 of them.

However, depending on the business model, the way these sites work varies. And sometimes it's not that simple either.

Consequently, it's very important to be able to quickly show a potential user how it works.

As an example, I have a bunch of CDs and video games that I'd like to get rid of; however, the swapping site I looked at seemed so complicated that after reading the 'how it works' page about three times and still not understanding it, I gave up.

So, here's a screenshot of the 'how it works' pages from the site in question along with four others that I picked at random from Simple Spark's list.

See if you can guess which site I had trouble with (answer at the end) and please let me know which one you think seems the easiest to use based on the screenshot.

1. Zunafish

Zunafish

2. Hitflip

Hitflip

3. PlayInterChange

PlayInterChange

4. SaySwap

SaySwap

5. Swaptree

Swaptree

Parting Thoughts

The site I just couldn't get my head round was SaySwap. Never was the phrase "a picture is worth a thousand words" more appropriate than here. I could read that page five more times and still not get it.

Kudos to PlayInterChange for making it seem really simple. One image with five steps — very clear.

I actually liked SwapTree's approach the most. A simple, elegant four-step image to explain the process, followed by some FAQs to cover the details.

And, the site intrigued me enough to sign up for the beta. You don't get more effective than that.

Posted on: June 22, 2007 | 1 Comment

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1 Comment Posted (Add Yours)

I agree completly about SaySwap.

Never was the phrase "a picture is worth a thousand words" more appropriate than here. I could read that page five more times and still not get it

I couldnt agree more - well commented. It does seen in vogue to have these types if site and they are blossoming gain.

SwapTree is easily the best. Four steps, four words. I signed up for the beta, too!

Does anyone else find HitFlip's images confusing? I don't think repeating the same image four times and flipping an arrow around is the clearest way to explain the service.

Here's Goozex.com video game trading site's "How it Works" -- complete with video!

Thanks for the post! If any of your readers want to get into swaptree before the launch, they can just click on this link.

Thanks again,

Swaptree

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