News Portal UX — Case Study

Disclaimer: I am not part of the Marunadan Malayali team. These are my perspectives and assumptions on their (https://www.marunadanmalayali.com/) News Portal’s user experience as a UX professional who graduated in Journalism.

Whenever some serious issues happen I visit their website or youtube channel to know Marunadan Malayali’s perspective. There are many Malayalam news portals. Many started and faded away. They are one of the best in Malayalam news portals and highly engaged with readers and viewers. Let’s see (guess) how they are doing it. (MM=Marunadan Malayali)

Content Architecture
The main or trend news is presented as an image with bullet points and visuals. Readers like bulleted points. It’s very easy for a reader to get a glimpse of what’s inside and take the decision to click or not.

Screenshot Monday, June 15 2020

The homepage contains a good selection of news stories which appears below. Visitors can find the particular news of their interest with ease by long Scroll. Most of the news sites give priority for Latest News. MM has a very clear idea that their viewers are there not to find the latest news. So they made it small and on the right side.

Lengthy Headlines
The advantage of Marunadan Malayali is, the reader can just read each article’s title, which normally comes 3 to 5 sentences, and understand the entire news. The user can save time. Web readers don’t read. They scan it. MM got it completely.

Screenshot Monday, June 15 2020

Choice of the content
They choose the emotional content. Indians are very emotional. Religion, caste, patriotism, politics, Festivals etc are in their roots and very much particular about it. Most of their contents are locally important like Sabarimala issues and provide proper differentiation to the content. That keeps the reader’s curiosity and make them revisit the site again. I think MM does more FIELD WORKS than Air Conditioned CUBICLE ASSUMPTIONS.

Youtube Thumbnails
They use a yellow colour on thumbnails to highlight certain lines which grabs attention. They used colloquial language on the thumbnails. That’s how most of the normal Malayalees talks in their daily lives.
അയ്യേ ഇച്ചീച്ചി .
നാവടങ്ങി പോയോ?
നാണം കേട്ട തെണ്ടിത്തരം.
എന്റെ പൊന്നച്ചോ സമ്മതിച്ചു
ഇന്ത്യയോട് കളി വേണ്ട, അതിനി ഏതു പൊന്നു മോനായാലും.

It’s kind of Conversational UX messaging patterns and No intellectual vocabulary show off.

Screenshot Monday, June 15 2020

Follow up videos on the same content.
They have multiple videos on the same or trending content. They do follow-ups on the same too. The channel contains the most up to date current events. These things improve SEO.

Less than 10 minutes of videos.
Their average video length is 4 to 5 minutes. It’s one of the most perfect timings for online videos. Now a day’s viewers first see the length of the video before watching it. Viewers most likely tend to give a chance to view if it’s less than 15 minutes.

We can debate on MM’s points of view on different news. But we can’t ignore that they are doing good. A news portal is successful when they provide users with the information they’re looking for. Ensuring the right user experience along with the quality content can make the difference.

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