Practical Guide to Interactive Design (vi): CLEAR and effective labeling

Source: Internet
Author: User

Navigation labels are mutually exclusive and completely exhausted.

Navigation tag is actually a form of expression, we use tags to represent the various categories of information on the site. For example, "Contact Us" the label, representative of the content will usually include the company name, telephone, address, mailbox and other information. It can be text, or it can be a picture. In English it is called "label" and is different from what we often call the "tag" tag cloud.

To put it simply, we are going to classify the information on the website and give them a name that is easy to understand. This is actually something anyone can do, so the importance of the navigation design process is often overlooked. In the design of products, often heard such words: "What is the name of this column?" Just leave it alone and do the more important work. ”

However, from the user's point of view, the navigation tag represents the content of the entire site, the structure of the product, they must rely on the content and organization of the label to find information in the site.

A label is a trigger for a visitor's behavior, and a good tag attracts visitors ' attention and directs them to find information accurately. Navigation tag is an important basis for visitors to predict the content of the target page, followed by it is the key point in the navigation, the transition of the page, so particularly important, ambiguous label to anticipate its intention, even let users go wrong way or lost direction.

For example, the label for this site:

This site's navigation tag is more extreme, first of all, the difference between the exclusion of the label, "Taobao trend list," Love Show Field "," Prodigal Club "and so on, meaning and the actual content are very close to, the second is inconsistent, the label of different granularity, length, different tone, and even English appearance, is a variety of; Worst of all, in the choice of labels, with a lot of smart words, such as "Love Gossip", it is difficult for users to predict what the link behind the content.

The process of designing labels, in fact, is the process of classifying information, we should adhere to the principle of mece, namely each other independent, complete exhaustion (mutally exclusive,collectively exhaustive). This is an objective point of view. You can also classify from a subjective point of view, but you have to be clear in the standard and have a full consensus among the target groups.

What kind of label can be called a good label? It should satisfy these several aspects:

1, the good label, should use the customer's language, avoids using the terminology, the jargon, the abbreviation and so on user difficult to understand the word;

2, the use of descriptive labels, to avoid using "information", "details" and other too broad words, as far as possible in some way to qualify, such as: "To the buyer of information", "Transaction details."

3, the mutual exclusion between the labels stronger, as far as possible to find differences;

4, use the focus of the label, such as, can the cat, dog, hamster and so summed up as "pet", do not use "animals."

5, in granularity, grammar, display, usage and so on to maintain the consistency of the label;

6, the longer label is often better than the short label, but not the longer the better, please try to control within 12 words (this is not a hard rule).

So where do we come from when we design labels? Is it a figment of the imagination? Of course not, you can get vocabulary from the following:

1, your own website or product

Your site and products, in the early stage of construction, has accumulated a lot of labels. All we have to do is go through the whole site, collect as many labels as we can, and then sort them out with a table.

For example, we in Amoy River Lake Revision, the existing label system for a collation, with the help of the table, it is easier to see the existence of a label system problems.

2, similar website or competitor website

If you don't have a website or product, go to the same type of website or competitor website to collect the labels. Believe that this approach, on the Internet, is almost self-taught. You can use the same type of Web site tag system observation and comparison, get some industry analogy more general vocabulary, reduce the user's understanding cost.

You can collect labels for the same type or competitor website in the same way for reference:

3. Controlled Thesaurus or thesaurus

This is a resource set up by librarians and experts in specific fields, which are the result of a lot of effort on the part of the experts, whose expressions are accurate and consistent, and these resources are usually public. In fact, many theories of information architecture come from Library management.

What should we do when we have to design a new tagging system when there is absolutely no basis?

You can help by analyzing the content, by asking the creator of the content, or by being like an expert or your direct user. Card classification is also a more popular approach.

There are about 4 steps to classifying a card:

1, recruit volunteers, most of the appropriate card classification of the number of volunteers is 15 people, large-scale projects can reach 30 people. Personally feel that if only want to test their own ideas, 5-10 people can.

2, prepare the card, write your pre-set label (these tags must be internal discussion or consult the results of experts).

3, let users classify, you can observe the user's classification process, as well as the understanding of the label.

4, the card classification results analysis, if the data is large, you can borrow software for analysis, the recommended tool has IBM Ezsort, Cardzort, Websort and so on.

Students interested in the card classification can further consult the information, we do not elaborate here.

Reference documents

Web Information Architecture: Designing a large Web site (US) Moviry, Rosen

"Web Navigation Design" (Karbach) (KALBACH,J)

Author: Tan

Article Source: Taobao ued

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