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Edgar Allan 2022


IHG Hotels & Rewards

Expanding IHG brand awareness through the map search experience

What I did

iOS Design, Product Design, Rapid Prototyping


Product designer


IHG App & On Property Team


As an IHG App team member, I've worked on re-designing the search results map to make the booking experience even more satisfactory.

What we had

A need for an enjoyable and useful map experience.

The former version of the map was an early first approach to expand the list results with an hybrid version of the search. But we were aware that this experience had many pain points and we had many opportunities to improve user experience and at the same time expand IHG brand awareness.

Former map experience

Problem statement

Identifying brands, a priority.

Following our standard process, we started defining the problem statement and hypothesis for the project.

Problem statement and hypothesis

Map design

Starting from the ground up. Or from the ocean.

The first step was to re-define the style of the map itself. We wanted to be aligned with users mental models so we started looking at global patterns. We wanted a map that was lighter/muted enough to serve as a background with multiple color labels on it, but at the same time, highlighting relevant data as:

  • Seas/lakes
  • Parks
  • Businesses or places of interest

Map design process
Hotel labels

It's all about balance

We designed different variations for hotel labels and weighed on the pros and cons of each version. We tried to cover all possible options, and then we chose the ones that worked better. Some of the versions included:

  • Color background - white icon - white text
  • White background - color icon - black text
  • White background - icon with color background - black text
Hotel labels options

Hotel clusters.

The last step was to consider the case scenario of many hotels in the same area. We had to come up with an icon to indicate a cluster of hotels.

Hotel clusters options

The experience

With a great design, comes a great experience.

With the new map design ready and with brand new labels for each hotel, now we had to develop whole map search experience:

  • Search update: We wanted users to have the ability to update the map search in the location they were seeing at the moment.
  • Center to location: The ability to center the map to their current location.
  • Error states: We needed an error state if there were no hotels in the selected area.
  • Hotel clusters: The case scenario of many hotels in the same area.
Hotel search flow


Expanding brand recognition.

Before the map re-design, users barely used the map view and preferred to use the list view. After the re-designed experience, users started to communicate in user testing sessions that they enjoyed using an hybrid version of the search, with the possibility of comparing hotels distances from specific points.

This was also a starting point for expanding brand awareness throughout all IHG channels, using the same brand labels as a design system, users will be able to easily identifying an IHG hotel brand on the desktop website, mobile website, or the native app.

Labels design for all IHG brands

Results in numbers for Hey Jane