Navigation plays a role in the web answer user "Who am I?" Where do I come from? " The role where I go. " Good navigation is the main cornerstone of a website. When you start to design a website or a Web page, it is often the first challenge that designers face.
01 Information Architecture of navigation design
Information architecture determines the nature of navigation, before the design of the information structure to clear the content, in order to maximize the role of navigation comb the structure of the Web site, effective transfer of information functions. How many hierarchical relationships are there in a Web page structure? Is there an upper and lower level relationship? Are the relationships between the various types of labels a side-by-side relationship or are they related? Are there any items in each child that can be merged? and so on. To avoid the simple logic of the relationship, even according to the business relationship to the page navigation subdivision to level 3 or even level 4 or produce some and user cognition does not match the category of information. Each additional level of navigation to add a cognitive dimension, each additional level of the entire navigation system to increase the complexity of several times, not only the user's operation will multiply, to the maintenance of the Web page later bring great costs. The following two icons make it clear that the different placement of the same number of pages brings different experiences to the user.
In the web interaction design There is a "3 clicks" principle, the user can not find the desired information after 3 clicks or complete a function, will choose to give up. So the most basic thing for navigation is to let users know what's on the page and know where their goals are. The breadth and depth of the navigation design show, in general, the breadth is better than the depth effect. Choosing between different levels of the deep structure is more likely to lose direction and may even get lost. But also do not spread in the breadth of too wide, any time to show too much content will scare users, so that they are forced to suffer from "choice syndrome."
In order to better understand the user's cognition or even say that in the face of the designer's needs, such as the creation and improvement of navigation, a common method is card classification. Card classification of the way is very simple, first of all to prepare some of the same size of the blank card, the information on different cards, so that participants to classify themselves, can also have appropriate explanatory guidance. The number of each test is best between 2 and 4, the number of people is too small to generate discussion between users, too many will make the discussion confusing, difficult to control. This is a common in the Web site or other planning in the early days of a test method to understand the true user habits of the classification of information, to find the cognitive differences between, as a basis for adjusting the structure.
02 Interactive style of navigation design
The most important function of Web navigation is to display the content information of the website to the user in a friendly way. After you have determined the information architecture for your Web site, you should take the appropriate navigation style as needed. Not regardless of 3,721, have a tab-type navigation, feel that there is no beam-like navigation are embarrassed to say that they are doing web pages. First we understand some of the most common forms of navigation:
1. Step navigation is usually made up of text labels and arrows, along with links to backwards. Suitable for interlocking page processes, such as wizards, payments, online reading, etc., to provide access to one page after another.
(illustrated by: Google.com registration page)
2. Paging Navigation (paging navigation) often appears on the search page, and the number of results that can be displayed at a time is usually limited, and the result of exceeding the limit will be displayed on the new page. The simplest paging navigation is a page-numbering distribution navigation.
(illustrated by: Ali Baba)