Amazon.com is the go-to place on Internet for anyone looking for physical music, serving customers with huge selections, unbeatable low prices and superb service. Music, along with other media categories, has always been one of the top categories at Amazon.
However, the way people shop for physical music is dramatically impacted by the booming of digital content. It had been long since the launch of Music store, and it was time to make change.
Your expectation. Many people listen to what others like. The bandwagon effect is human nature. You follow the trend, and look for top-selling tracks. You can’t wait to try the new releases.
Amazon. They're hidden somewhere on Amazon store, which is usually more than 10,000 pixels long.
Your expectation. Finding the right music becomes more of a personalized experience. You still listens to top songs, but you do not just walk in a store and pick the albums on display. You explore new albums, and find the ones you like.
Amazon. You get 3 or 4 recommendations based on your purchase history on Amazon. But that’s the end of experience. If you don’t like it, you aren’t getting anything else. Go shop “What’s hot in each genre".
Your expectation. There are more tracks released each day and more genres available than before. To get your attention, companies advertise in the store. Sometimes, the editors also share their favorite list with you to help you make decisions.
Amazon. You get graphics with different visual treatments, sometimes some text with a blurred album cover. There are too many, too busy to fit on the page. You choose to ignore it.
Your expectation. You enjoy the browsing experience on iTunes, even if it sometimes couldn’t find what you’re looking for. You like the pixel-level refined look & feel.
Amazon. Bold color contrast, mixed typography, weird paddings. You think Amazon looks more like a old-style mail order catalog.
I took this project, and decided to do more than the layout changes. There are a few key considerations (as well as limitations):
Customers do not spend on a page reading every detail - they scan it quickly. I must understand their need, and present information with simple structure and clear hierarchy.
Amazon boasts of its recommendation system. The resource is here, what I need to design is a user-friendly interface to assist users in finding their music.
Amazon is a retailer, not a manufacture. Presenting campaigns from vendors is still one of the priorities. I must find the right strategy to balance between merchandising campaigns and product information.
People don’t shop on Amazon Music store. People shop on Amazon. As creative as I want to be, I must conform to the UI consistency to some extent, so it’s not detached from the ecosystem.