Navigation is meaningful

July 23, 2012

Kalbach presents one of the most convincing arguments in favor of web navigation. The problem with removing navigation is that “people wouldn’t have a sense of beginning or end in their search for information, and orientation would be difficult” (p.6). Without the hierarchy of a table of contents, users would lack a sense of the whole, the beginning to end structure of the content. Kalbach then says, “Navigation provides a narrative for people to follow on the Web. It tells a story–the story of your site. In this respect, there is something both familiar and comforting about web navigation. The widespread, seemingly natural use of navigation to access content on the Web reflects its strength as a narrative device” (p.10). In other words, your navigation, which presents a hierarchy of information to the reader, gives users clues about the meaning of the content by mere fact of its organization.

Tom Johnson quoting from James Kalbach’s book ‘Designing Web Navigation’

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