SL Marketplace Makeover: Linden Lab, Your Search Function's Fail, So Create a User-Made Collection Feature!
Iris Ophelia's ongoing review of virtual world and MMO fashion
I recently shared some choice words about the shortcomings in Second Life Marketplace's "Mad Style" featurette, which was supposed to showcase SL styles similar to that seen in Mad Man, but only showed just how atrocious the search function in Linden Lab's e-commerce site is. It's time for Linden Lab to add a collection feature to the Marketplace, for users who want to make their own lists of recommended content. (Similar to what's worked so well for sites like Etsy and Amazon.) Let's call it a Marketplace Treasury.
What would that look like? Just imagine a Mad Style feature in which content creators could categorize items of theirs which had a Mad Man-esque style. Here's the prototype I came up with:
Here's my mock-up of what an SL Marketplace Treasury page could look like. I kept it consistent with the Marketplace's current visuals, of course, and kept the search tools on the side of the page, for easier browsing. I figure that a Treasury page should have a title as well as a link to the creator's own Marketplace presence, and maybe even an eye-catching picture to make the items really stand out -- or even to make the Treasury stand out from others Treasury pages.
Treasuries would be a great tool for every user of the SL Marketplace. In addition to the obvious uses, bloggers could put together outfit Treasuries to share, and designers who have multiple brands run through alts could collect their works in one place. Searches could even become far easier and more fruitful: Some designers don't use keywords or tags very well (or at all!) so it can be hard to find their work. But if your search results also returned Treasuries or other kinds of user-made lists full of handpicked content, it would be so much easier to find exactly what you're after. So how about it, Linden Lab?
And if you're geared up for a little Marketplace shopping now, I'll give you all the details for my own Mad Men style look... the old fashioned way:
- The hair is one of my favourites, Dura-Girl 31 by chiaki Xue of Dura [Marketplace listing]
- This skin is a limited past release by Amesha Jewell, but you can nearly recreate it with other releases from her store Heartsick [Marketplace store]
- I added a touch of cuteness to the skin with tattoo dimples by Launa Fauna of l.fauna [Marketplace listing]
- The dress is Peggy by Miko Omegamu of Icing [Marketplace listing], a classic brand completely absent from the original Mad Style feature
- Finally, the pose used is from the Pencil set by D.Luxx [Marketplace listing]
Iris Ophelia (Janine Hawkins IRL) has been featured in the New York Times and has spoken about SL-based design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan and with pop culture/fashion maven Johanna Blakley.