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Improving Web Site Navigation
50%-75% of a web site's success is due to proper navigation.
The most visitor exits, the most failed searches, the most negative user experiences on your web site are caused by one thing: poor navigation.
Ideal web site navigation makes it easy for the user to get from one place to another quickly and to always know where he is - the two most critical components of a happy user experience.
Keep it simple, consistent, and perpetual.
Your navigation shouldn’t change from page to page. It can expand on specific pages, but it should be consistent and easy to understand. People don’t like change. They need to feel comfortable on a site right from the first click.
Think “comfortable” before “cutting edge.” And, test navigation with people who resemble your prospects, not with staff members or experienced Web surfers.
If you want to increase online sales, make sure your navigation is user-friendly.
Use the “C” format
Top, Left, and Bottom Navigation
- TOP NAVIGATION - Feature your most important product categories here with colorful tabs. In the Action Bar below, get the user involved immediately with tempting offers: FREE Catalog, Web Specials, Clearance Bargains. And, don’t forget to include a link back HOME.
- LEFT NAVIGATION - Highlight the most important features on your site by repeating the items listed in the Action Bar. Your store directory should come next with your major product categories presented in alphabetical order for easy reference. Include company information, your guarantee, and FAQs in a separate section to build credibility and establish trust.
- BOTTOM NAVIGATION - Repeat your top navigation at the bottom of your page so users don’t have to scroll back up to view it. You should also put your site map here, as well as your privacy statement.
Provide an easy search function
Users need the option of finding a specific product instead of browsing through your web site. Position your search box at the top of the left navigation. Be sure to include all the possible search scenarios for misspellings, plurals, different phrasings and other ways people may input keywords.