When designing a website, the goals is to make sure that to navigate with ease and get the great experience. But unfortunately, not every website is build to that. Web Design Malaysia don’t mind sharing their secret on designing for the best navigation. Before start everything, make yourself as the user, think about what they feel, where they are and where they are going. Creating a navigation is one of the most important aspects in designing a websites, as it is the system that help user navigate. Here are some of the secret to a better website navigation.
Planning a navigation
When thinking of the navigation, the first and foremost is planned your navigation perfectly. The starting point is figure out what kind of website you want to offer and how the information should be order. Planning a website menu in early stage is called as ‘sitemap’, designer will usually put together in a form of diagram or a spreadsheet for the level of information. There are no wrong or right way to creating a sitemap, we suggest you to work with whatever you feel comfortable using.
Language that user friendly
When labelling the navigation, the language that you use must easily to understand. We know with now trend to be the great copywriter but sometime basic thing like navigation and menu need to be clarify. You want to make the menu as understandable as it can be, if you are labeling a shop section as ‘Marketplace’ this will make the user to figure out what is this page all about. Same goes to different language. The easiest most simple language to label navigation is the key to a great user experiences.
’Don’t change the norm (use web conventions)
Using web convention sometimes boring because every web designer will use it but, little do you know that if you are doing an informative webpage like educational page, you don’t need o make the navigation, button, menu like those in portfolio websites. The purpose of navigation is to ease out user to navigate themself inside the website, but if you are creating a campaign or a portfolio you can do it unconventionally, because this acts as to attract more user to dive into your website. Lastly, as a web designer make sure to really understand what you website industry and category.
Primary navigation should be consistent throughout the site and should stand out. Typically, on the homepage or index page the main menu will sit along the top of the page whether in the center, aligned to left or right of the page. Main menu is easily to identified because it design to contrast against everything from the page.
Link the logo back to homepage
This crucial thing to do, it’s so hard to find website that don’t implement it. Common place for a logo is at the top left hand corner, but there also can be at centered long the top. User usually think that logo is a link back to the homepage, super convenience and it is convention that is widely implemented.
Responsive navigation is considered as the best ways to make website look great on any laptop and mobile, this navigation is called ‘hamburger menu’, menu that is a compact navigation. To recognize the menu, there’s slightly separated horizontal lines. Hamburger menu came across to navigate easily on mobile without taking much space, as it can be tucked away top right or left corner, but it can be vary from site to site. It function by sliding in, sliding down or popping up. As the menu became well-known some website still don’t bother to change it on desktop. Boutique agencies or campaign site is heavily use it but not on heavy content sites.
Big chunky footer
Footer used to be reserved for privacy and legal links but it can also be quite standards to display sign up for email, address details and social links. Footer usually be the last resort for user to check in. Plenty website still uses this fat footer for their heavy content or retail sites, they use to display security icon and payment method because it quite crucial. Large footer serve up helpful links for those who love to navigate from the bottom but it can also balance out your site layout.
Sticky navigation is very essential for website menu, it is lock into place and do not disappear when the user scrolling the page. You can implement it but it goes back to whether it’s suitable for design and navigation purpose.
Reminding where you are
These can be a good experience to the user if you see a highlighted menu. It’s simple and not to confused the user.
Suitable mega menu
If your client came from directory industry, retail company and heavy content site then it’s a must to implement the large mega menu. This kind of menu is not suitable if you are designing for a small independent business. Menu navigation is a part of web design and it important to create a solution to your user and based on your client need.