These first days of Swapz 4 have been really stressful for all of us but it looks like things have now got back to normal. We are really sorry for all the problems your were having and are really grateful for your patience and reports.
At times it may not always seem like it, but everything we do is done with the best of intentions for the swapz community. In 9 years we have come a huge way and still think there is so much more we can do to benefit our members.
We’d like to thank those of you who have given us the useful feedback and questions that make up a big part of tonight’s questions and answers. We hope you find our answers both interesting and useful.
“Don't change what isn't broke” - Anonymous
When we launched swapz 3 in 2009 it looked current and was built to grow with the community. Now, 4 years later many things have changed: technology, mobile devices our community, the daily amount of listings is 5 times bigger and, most importantly, it was hard to bring new features.
Swapz 4 is faster, easier to use, easier to understand, has more features and stability. Although you may still be getting used to it the look of the site, it is in tune with current design trends and the user interface makes most tasks a lot easier for you.
More new features are coming soon and swapz 4 has been built to handle them.
“why is there a "sale" section on a swap site? doesn’t that defeat the object?” - One user
“so many come on this site to sell and buy we can’t beat them so instead of banning and removing them they have allowed it BUT its STILL a SWAP site you will find all the real swappers will mostly swap ,,, but you have to admit it will open doors for others and more deals will be able to be made” - Another user
We thought this would be a hard questions. But someone helped us out.:)
In short - we absolutely agree with “Another user” - sorry can’t publish their name here.
“What’s happened to the part where you can see how many people have looked at your item ? I use this regularly to check my listings and keep a record of for stat purposes.”
We have listened to what you wanted and this was added back on Monday 25th March
The latest version of chatz will be live on the site really soon.
“Please reinstate the guest page, i used ot daily on swapz3, and made some good swapz because of it.”
My Guests will be back on the site really soon.
“Will you be improving the search facility for swapz 4?”
Yes we will. Search is becoming the most important part of the site now and we will definitely will work more on it’s improvement. Meanwhile we would like to highlight that the Swapz 4 search has already been enhanced.
First of all it has distance search. If you have your postcode in listed in your profile you can search for listings within a particular distance i.e. 50 miles around me. (BTW, when you view a listing it shows how far this item is from you now)
Secondly, subcategories - now once you enter the search keyword you can filter the results by a particular subcategory - these are displayed on the left hand column
“Will you be bringing back the Forum for swapz 4?”
We would love to bring back the Forum but it needs to be there as a resource for the community. Sadly, it was often used as a place to abuse both other members and SwapzTeam rather than to help each other.
It would be good to hear suggestions on how you think the above can be achieved and to see who amongst you would consider be a moderator – email firstname.lastname@example.org
Please understand that this would not be an instant comeback as we still have many things to do with swapz 4 – however with enough support we can make this happen.
“why were the 2 people swapping a "swap-box item" done away with on the main homepage link?”
If enough of you let us know that want them back we can see what can be done – although they are probably enjoying their retirement. Who remembers the original moving swapz men that exchanged items?
“Hi, could you make searching for cars easier? For example, petrol/ diesel, year, mileage?”
This planned for later on in the year (around end of May) once all users are settled with and enjoying swapz 4.
“The new layout is terrible. Why mess with something that wasn’t broke. Previous site was miles better” - an angry user
“i like the new look will take some time getting used to. Good job with the new look :D” - no so angry user
It’s difficult to talk about design and usability. During the first days of swapz 4 we said to everyone “give it some time, we are sure you’ll like i”t. Hopefully you have given it a chance and you do like it now. If not - let us know exactly what you would change or keep from the Swapz 3.
Also, we remember that many of you did not like Swapz 3 when we launched it and asked us to bring Swapz 2 - so, it seems that swapz 3 was not bad at all.
We are confident that the new navigation is easier to use and makes more sense. As for the design - everybody has their own taste.
“What happened to completed swapz, how do I rate now?”
This is probably the biggest change. The original “completed swapz” section has been split into Swaps History and Swaps in Progress.
There are many small reasons why we did this, but the important one is that it makes sense :) Logically “completed” should be something that is done and no further action is required and in progress is something you have to complete. We also took steps away, changed the layout and added an easy to read history at the bottom of every transaction. We are sure you will like it as soon as check it out.
“I like the new layout but its no longer iPhone friendly and I can't seem to upload pictures from my iPhone anymore. “
At the point when we released swapz 4 we only concentrated on the web version. Last summer we launched swapz iPhone app and the experience wasn’t great all round so, instead of developing an app for iphone and an app for android etc. we plan to release a mobile friendly version of the site. The work has already begun on this and we hope to release it sometime in April.
We want to apologise again to all users who browse swapz on their mobile devices - we just really underestimated how important mobile support is for swapz members.
“What happened to my friends section? Please bring it back! “
The My Friends section didn’t really go anywhere. It’s still there but named differently and may serve a different purpose.
Before Swapz 4 we used My Friends as a list of users we know, like and dealt with as a way tokeep an eye on them and see their new listings. Also, many members highlighted swappers they like on their profile page. We decided to combine these two things into one - Recommended swappers. This section is available in My Account and all your old friends are there. You can still search by “recommended swappers” and they automatically appear on your profile.
However, this is not all that is planned for the feature. We plan to start using this in the future as a way to determine trustful swappers. For example, we know 20-30 really good swappers and we mark them as trusted swappers. Then, if you have been recommended by 2 or more trusted swappers you too become a trusted swapper and so on.
“As for the “friends” section, it’s wrong that you insist that you have got to have had a swap with someone in order to have them as a friend. You get to know people on here, and keeping in touch with them could/can be important for future swaps etc. Please re-think this carefully.”
Yes, at the moment you can only recommend someone you have dealt with. We are still thinking about the possibility of letting a user be added who you haven’t swapped with.
Ok - here’s a funny thing! If you’ve been with us for quite a while be prepared:
For the whole of Swapz 3, your Rating was never the rating you received from other users but was actually the rating you had rated the others. This was a bug we found out when we did the upgrade. We were shocked, really shocked!
For a few days we couldn’t work out why nobody had mentioned any rating change and why nobody complained. We found out! Most of the time, people treat you the same way that you treat them. So be good to others - and your rating will always be 5 star!
Cheers and keep enjoying swapz!