Keeping a website layout simple and easy to navigate is key to a great site. Why? It’s all about your visitors! Have you ever been on a website and found it hard to find what you are looking for through the plethora of dropdown menus and different pages? It can be frustrating and confusing as a visitor to have too many choices, so we highly recommend keeping your navigation menu as user friendly as possible.
How do you achieve this?
Firstly, let’s look at what a navigation menu is exactly – it is the line of clickable links that (usually) sits on the top or side of a website. If you look at our Freya Demo Theme, for example, the Primary Navigation Menu sits across the top of the website and consists of: Home, About, Services, Testimonials, Blog and Contact. If needed, you can have drop downs on each navigation link e.g. About could have sub-pages such as ‘Giving Back’, ‘Values and Purpose’, and ‘Our Team’.
Here are our Top Tips for Website Navigation
1. Keep It Simple
Your navigation area is the place that people can quickly find the pages they want to visit. If someone wants to review other client feedback, they may wish to view your testimonials page for example. Keeping your top navigation to about six options is great and not too overwhelming for your visitors.
2. Make Drop-Downs Meaningful
It can be easy to want to add and add to a website but keeping your drop-down menus to no more than five below any one of your header navigation options is perfect. Large businesses can have more complex websites, so as a small business you can definitely stand out by keeping the website simple and clean to navigate. It can be very refreshing for your site visitors!
3. Meaningful Titles
Ensure that your navigation titles and drop-downs are clearly named so that anyone visiting your site can easily understand where they need to go. Visitors should have a general idea of what they should find on a page even before clicking any navigational link. Don’t make anything too cryptic and keep it simple.
4. The Psychology of Order
Psychological studies show that attention and retention are highest for things that appear at the beginning and at the end. Psychological experiments show that when participants are presented with a list of words, they tend to remember the first few and last few words and are more likely to forget those in the middle of the list. This is known as the Primary and Recency Effect or the “Serial Position Effect”. Your navigation is no exception! Put your most important items at the beginning of the navigation, such as your Home and Services pages. Your “Contact” page should be the last item on the list.