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==> Developing A Web Site


" 2 Tips On Effectively Organizing Your Navigation "


To keep visitors on your site, make navigation on your site clear and efficient. In fact, Jamie Kiley, a young web designer from Georgia, says "any time you can find a way to divide your links into two or more categories, do so". To achieve an effective navigation scheme, read Jamie's tips below:


This article may be reprinted in its entirety so long as the author's credits and all links remain intact and unchanged. Please follow
reprint instructions at http://www.kianta.com/designtips/reprints.htm.


2 Tips On Effectively Organizing Your Navigation
By Jamie Kiley

Not all links are created equal.

While all of your links may be important, you must sort and
prioritize to come up with an effective navigation scheme.
Here's what you should keep in mind:

1. Sort your links

Your links should be organized according to their relationship to
each other. Any time you can find a way to divide your links into
two or more categories, do so.

If you have more than 5 or 6 links, categorizing becomes very
important. Try to find some natural groups. For example, suppose
you sell widgets, and your site has this set of links:

Mini widgets
Multi-colored widgets
Discounted widgets
Contact us
About the company
News

Your major categories are:

Products
Company info

When you separate the two sets of links according to those major
categories, it becomes much easier to sort the available information.

The simple reason is that a choice between two items is less
complex than a choice between 6 items. It's the principle of
dividing and conquering.

Take a look at the following site:
http://www.adobe.com

Notice the four main categories--Products, Resources, Support
and Purchase. These four categories help visitors narrow down at
a glance which area they need to look in to find the info they want.

Imagine if all of those links were lumped into one long list. How
much harder would it be to figure out where to go?

Often, you might not have clear-cut categories. For example, you
may have three links that all go together in one category (such as
"Products"), plus several more miscellaneous links. Even if the
miscellaneous links don't fit conveniently under one category name,
you can still group your links. Put the three product links together,
then all the miscellaneous links in a separate place.

2. Prioritize your links

Hopefully, you have some idea of what you want visitors to do on
your site. Your site should be designed to drive a specific action--
in other words, get visitors to do a specific thing.

Once you've decided what your primary goal is, your navigation
should reflect it. The links that pertain most closely to your main
goals should be emphasized the most. You need to guide the
visitor in the direction you want him or her to go.

Prioritize. Ask yourself the question, "What is most important?"
What do you really want to accomplish? (I'll give you a hint:
"About the company" should not be a top priority link.)

Here are several examples of sites that prioritize well:

http://www.fleet.com
On the home page, you'll see three main links. These links
are geared at attracting the company's major types of
customers. All other links on the page are much smaller.

http://www.atomz.com
On this page, it's clear that the company wants visitors
to click on one of their three product links: Publish,
Search or Promote. The site does a good job of getting
attention and guiding the visitor in a specific direction.

http://www.columbiahouse.com
Right from the beginning, it's obvious that the company
wants visitors to join one of their three clubs. All other
links are relegated to the bottom of the page.

By carefully prioritizing, these sites are able to narrow down the
choices and make it more likely that visitors will head in the
direction they want them to go.

------------------------------------------------------------------
About the Author:
Jamie Kiley is a 20-year-old web designer in Atlanta, GA. Read
more of her web design articles at: http://www.kianta.com/designtips/
There are 605.6 million people online. Can they find your business?
Jamie Kiley creates powerful and engaging websites that make
sure YOUR company gets noticed. Visit http://www.kianta.com
for a FREE quote.





********** Additional References **********


Site Build It - the only all-in-one site-brainstorming-building-hosting-and-marketing system.

Create Your First Business Web Site in 10 days! - video enhanced system for complete beginners to launch a business web site.

65 Instant Web Design Answers! - answers those "how do I do that?" type questions with edge-cutting web design tips and tricks.

Simple PHP - easy guide teachs how and why you should add PHP to your web site.

Affiliate Armor - protection for affiliate links against bypass and lost commissions.

Java Scripts Magic - advanced web page design with easy copy and paste codes for those who want to skip all the HTML techie talk.

Absolute Beginners Guide to CGI - step-by-step guide to learning the basics of CGI scripting.

XSitePro - an easy way to create a stream of income-generating web sites in minutes.

MateMedia - puts your business on the web in 4 steps with affordable hosting plans.

Easy Site Magic - adds special features to your web site / free report: "23 Tips to Get Repeat Visitors to Your Site, Build Your Subscriber List and Turn More "Browsers" into Paying Customers".



Best wishes for your online success!

Stan Smith




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