Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Introducing Featured Categories: A new way to find the loans you love

You might have noticed that the top of Kiva’s Lend page looks a little different. 

To help you, our lenders, explore new types of loans and borrower stories, we’ve introduced Featured Categories -- a new tool to find the loans you want to fund.

There’s little rhyme or reason to why certain lenders choose certain loans. Some people love lending to women or food vendors or single parents. Others choose based on beautiful pictures or countries. The goal of Featured Categories is to make this process even easier and encourage discovery.

Not only does this new tool group and highlight innovative loan categories, it also allows us to make changes and respond quickly based on what people find most compelling.

You might remember when we redesigned the Kiva website last year. That gave us the ability to highlight three loan types in a “Featured Loans” module, also at the top of the page. But with the growing variety of loans on Kiva, we kept coming up with exciting categories that we were eager to share.

Having Featured Categories let’s us spotlight far more than three loan types. Offering more engaging images, clear counts of available loans and succinct explanations of each category, it helps lenders quickly determine where they want their loans to go.

We’ll be changing up categories to keep the Lend page fresh -- and for a variety of other reasons. Right now, you’ll see a lot of the Featured Categories highlight different loan uses (like transportation and green) or types of borrowers receiving loans (like Islamic finance and rural communities). In the future, we’re excited to feature new groupings like matched loans or interesting combinations, like women who work in agriculture, or young people in conflict zones. The possibilities are endless.

So next time you’re searching for a loan to fund, we encourage you to scroll through our Featured Categories. We’d also love to hear what you think! You can send us feedback at blog@kiva.org.