Defining the navigation design of the Smoothie World site
The nature and content of your layout depend on how you defi ne a site’s organizational and navigational structure. One of the benefi ts of creating wireframes, prototypes, and mockups is to allow you to build your site more rapidly. One popular method for exploring possible navigation in the design phase is to use a pencil, sticky notes, and a blank wall. This lets you rapidly “reorganize” a site, and also allows for collaboration and doesn’t require any special skills.
Let’s consider two types of site structures that will eventually translate to the navigation menus: wide and deep. First you have a wide navigation structure in which the main pages are listed horizontally: In a wide navigation system, the main pages are all visible together and for small sites, this is often a logical choice. With the navigation bar on every page the user can easily jump to any of the main pages with a single click.
The disadvantage of a wide navigation structure is that there may be limits to how much information can easily be displayed if there are too many categories. You are limited by the width of the screen and must also remember that if you present too many options, the site may overwhelm or confuse the user. An alternative method for organizing content is deep navigation, which simplifies the main navigation and then group’s related pages into categories.
Deep navigation provides simplified entry-points for the user; however, the designer must decide how to organize the pages inside these main links. Common solutions to this problem include drop-down menus and secondary navigation menus.
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