Website Navigation Tips
Website navigation is the most important aspect to consider while
designing a website. The primary aim for effective navigation is
get your visitors to stay in your site and also for visitors to easily
find what they are looking for easily and quickly. Designing effective
navigation can also entice your visitors to try out the other things
you offer on your site. In this article we will look at some of
the basic guidelines you need to follow while designing the navigation
of a website.
Effective Navigation Guidelines
While designing the navigation for your site keep the following
points in mind:
- Organized Links
Make sure your links are well organized according to the
order of importance. Visitors should be easily able to find what
they are looking for under different categories.
E.g. All our main links are found on the top i.e. our services,
links are found on the right of the page. These are common and
consistent throughout the site.
Finally if the web page belongs to a guide E.g web design guide
you will find the related links below the right menu and also
at the bottom of the page.
Note: Related links are very important as visitors coming to a
particular page will probably be interested in more information
you have under the same topic.
- Clear and Prominent
Once you have decided on your navigation links, you need to think
of the best place to put them. Navigation should be clear and
consistent. Try to design your navigation on the top or on the
left as these are the first places our eyes go to. Also locate
the primary links high enough on the page so that they are visible
without scrolling. Navigation images should be seamlessly integrated
into the site design. Avoid putting navigation links at the bottom
of the page as visitors will need to scroll right down to see
the links. If you like you could put the important links at the
top AND bottom of the page just to make sure your visitors don't
miss the link.
Navigation should be clear and consistent. The important links
of your website should be on every page, in the same location,
and in the same sequence. Don't confuse your visitors by putting
your navigation links in different places in different pages.
- Easy to understand
Make your links easy to understand and to the point. Usually you
won't have enough place to have long links so make use of the
space wisely. Visitors need to know where they will go on clicking
on a particular link, so make sure your links are understandable
or nobody is going to click on your links, which will defeat the
purpose of designing a good navigation system.
- DHTML Menus
If you have a large number of links under categories and sub-categories
you could use navigation menus to organize your links. There are
many cut 'n' paste scripts available on the Net that you could
use to create great navigation systems. A favorite resource center
you'll find tons of useful navigation menus that are very easy
to install on your site.
Keeping these basic points in mind you can go ahead and design
an effective navigation system for your site. Take a look at other
sites to get some ideas on good navigation techniques! Another
good idea would be to use eye-catching visuals and small chunks
of information to draw visitors to click on a link.
You could also take a look at our portfolio
to see the clear and consistent navigation we have designed for
our clients, that help visitors find what they want easily and quickly.
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