Few website visitors have the patience to remain on a website that is difficult to navigate. As such, a website with a poor user experience will almost always suffer from high rates of abandonment, or at least higher than necessary. A modern website should not only “look nice”, but should also provide an intuitive user flow that guides visitors through the site, as opposed to forcing them to find their their way around. Immortal Technologies shares four intuitive navigation tips that will improve site navigation and visitor retention.
1. Use Highly Visible Buttons. Few website design elements grab a visitor’s attention faster than a clickable button. Long used on desktop design, clickable buttons have become particularly useful for creating navigation for mobile interfaces. As such, buttons should be used often, contain concise verbiage, and be placed consistently across pages. Additionally, buttons should be designed with sizing and padding in mind for touch screen navigation..
2. Keep it consistent. Navigation should be laid out in the same way on every page, including the main and side navigation as well as in page elements. Users shouldn’t need to figure out how to navigate each time they move to a new page.
3. Utilize sticky navigation. Sticky navigation keeps important navigation items, such as the main navigation fixed in place as users scroll down a page. Maintaining menu visibility at the top of the screen eliminates the need to scroll back up to continue navigating the site. Sticky menus make navigation more efficient and can improve visitor retention, since the menu accessible at all times.
4. Leave a breadcrumb trail. Breadcrumbs show users where they are within a website’s navigation as well as the steps they’ve taken to get there. Additionally, visitors can more easily retrace their steps, if needed, to pages previously viewed. While breadcrumbs have fallen out of favor in some modern design trends, finding clever and aesthetically pleasing ways to implement them, is worth the effort from a user experience perspective.