Customer behaviour insights for Gumtree’s annual product strategy


The challenge

Gumtree, an online classifieds marketplace owned by eBay, was looking to defend its market share in South Africa by improving its website’s users’ experience. To understand what improvements they needed to make, Gumtree turned to Experio to conduct extensive qualitative customer research before their annual strategy and planning session.

We had less than a month-and-a-half to conduct our research and provide the definitive insights Gumtree required.

The solution

We conducted 80 one-on-one qualitative interviews with representative customers in four provinces across South Africa.

We work closely with all our clients by actively engaging them at every stage of the process. In Gumtree’s case, this helped them make sense of a lot of information in a very short space of time.

Because we live-streamed all our interviews, Gumtree could join interviews at any stage in real time, or watch a recording later on.

Regular check-ins meant that there were no surprises or insights we hadn’t already discussed in our final report.

Qualitative Interviews

We conducted 16 one-on-one qualitative interviews for each of the five personas: General sellers, general buyers, car buyers, car sellers and car dealerships. There were 80 interviews in total with representative customers in four provinces across South Africa.

Jobs To Be Done

We used the Jobs To Be Done methodology for each interview to validate the job map, while gaining insight into customers’ wants, needs and pain points.
We used the interviews to:
• Define the customers’ goal
• Define what steps a customer needs to take to reach this goal
• Define the “jobs” a customer needs to “get done” at each step


Using the insights gained from the qualitative interviews, we worked with Gumtree to set up surveys which allowed them to generate opportunity scores and prioritise unmet needs.

“We contracted Experio to conduct five intensive and very ambitious Jobs to be Done (JTBD) projects within a very short timeline in order to get a comprehensive understanding of our customers steps, needs, and pain points throughout their journeys. They worked with us closely from day one, being very responsive to questions and feedback. They met every deliverable and deadline, and kept up great communication every step of the way. They gave us confidence and peace of mind in their professional abilities, and as we anticipated, we got everything we asked for in exactly the format we wanted it in. We couldn’t be happier with the final outcome of the study! We would not hesitate to hire them again for future research needs.”

Ashley Auld, UX Design Manager at Ebay Classifieds Group