I have been looking for an alternative to Google News, which in my opinion is quite a mediocre product from Google.
We earlier profiled the launch of Rediff’s Real Time news, a service that brings latest news/images and a mag like experience to readers. In terms of experience, the service brings instant search experience and collates images from different sources – a job well done.
We liked the design and liked the simplicity of the product (think white). I had one strong feedback for the team, but decided to take it easy and was sincerely hoping that a big giant like Rediff will take its own time to implement more feature.
But one month into the product and the product team has ignored the most important reason to visit the site – the user intent.
Qn: Why do you visit a news site?
To know what’s happening, right?
So is it a search experience or a navigation experience?
Assuming it’s a search experience (which Rediff Realtime news is), the service basically assumes that you know what you are looking for!
But that defeats the purpose of the news site – i.e. if I already know what I am looking for, then what the hell am I doing here? After all, you visit a news site for information about things you probably don’t know.
Note to Rediff Product Managers: A news site should be navigational in nature and unless you implement ‘news’ site like feature, do not call it news service. Call it real time search or a ‘guided news service’.
In short, answer a very basic question: “Why should one visit the service? And with what intent?”
What’s your opinion?