Good Navigation, Bad Navigation

January 11th 2010 | Designing with Wix

Good Navigation, Bad Navigation

We often get emails from Wix users requesting that we review the sites that they’ve created with us, which is completely cool and we encourage it. One of the most common problems that keep coming up on members’ websites is navigation. Users sometimes create awesome stuff, giving their heart and soul in each page, but without the proper navigation it all goes down the drain. Good navigation is essential in the internet experience. It provides site visitors with a simple and convenient way to browse. That’s why we figured it might be a good idea to post a few general tips on how to design a website with a natural and smooth navigation.

What Should You Avoid?

Adding absolutely no navigation:Every now and then, members simply forget to add navigation buttons to their websites!  We’ve seen many websites with 10 or more pages, and not a single link between them. This means a random visitor can only access your home page – ain’t that a shame?

Adding a full navigation menu only on the homepage and a Home button on the other pages: Yes, it is possible to view the entire site like this, but it’s very inconvenient and will annoy the living daylight out of any savvy web user.

Using only Back and Next buttons: What if we don’t want to move back or forward? By using this method, you’re basically telling the visitors how YOU want them to view the site, instead of letting them set their own browsing rhythm. Not very user-friendly.

Setting the Home button to the landing page: Landing pages are meant to be some sort of an aesthetic statement that sets the mood for your website. They are fancy and fun, but don’t contain useful content. That’s why they should be viewed right at the start, but not during the visit.

Changing the menu’s look and location from page to page: In this crazy world, the menu should function as an anchor of stability. If you keep playing with it, you might confuse your visitors. In most cases, it’s also not so pleasant to the eye.

What Should You Do?

This part is much easier – use a fixed menu that appears on the same spot on all pages. Keep it neat and easy to read. Make sure that the buttons are equal in size, even when the text is not equal in length. It will be extra nice of you to add a link to the homepage from the site’s logo, in addition to the Home button on the menu.

If you want to ensure a peaceful navigation, it’s always a good idea to create your site using a Wix template. Our studio designers put a lot of thought into this issue when they design templates. You might also want to check out these sites, created by Wix users, all boasting menus that guarantee a clean navigation:

Soda Spectrum

Soda Spectrum Site Created With Wix

TK Design

TK Design Site Designed with Wix

Katrina Davis

Katrina Davis Site Designed with Wix

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