The navigation is the main mode of use of a web site or application and should basically take the user, in the most simple and fast, where it wants to go. The questions the user asks when landing on a site are:
- Where am I?
- Where can I go?
To be successful, a web shop must implement every part of it in a usable and functional way. The main menu of a web shop is fundamental both as regards the usability of the site and from the SEO point of view. When creating a web shop it is the first thing you need to work on, through the structure of our future site. While selling on ebay you need to know the navigations.
Juggle the menu
The menu is essential to juggle within your site and it is important, in the analysis phase, to consider many things. The essence of the mission of a web shop is to provide data to the user: it is therefore well understood how essential it is to organize the contents of the site and simplify their consultation.
Navigation tools are by far the most important elements in a site, at least as much and in some ways more than the content itself. They perform different functions and needs of the user, as Steve Krug very well explains in his “Don’t make me think”.
Refer to that text for a more in-depth discussion on the meaning of navigation tools. For what matters here, let’s say the main purposes are:
Provide the visitor with an idea of what the site presents
Give an idea of how the site is built and structured, so that they can orient themselves. “Where do I find what?” is the question they should help answer.
Web shop navigation tools, just like real-world signage, now rely on some established conventions. Slowly these conventions will also evolve, but for now they have relative stability. Let’s see them in overview, remembering that like all schematizations, this too should not be taken literally (there are sites that have very specific needs, for which these concepts must be very diversified). But it is useful to start introducing the topic and to fix some key points.
Design the navigation menu
To design a navigation menu that makes the site easy to navigate, you need to keep some rules in mind: It must be simple, comprehensive and organized: the entries must be short, direct and intuitive. Furthermore, it is necessary to think in time about the part of User Experience Design that deals with the organization of content and information within a web shop so that they are easy to find and understand.
Choose only items that really matter to your business and users. On the web, navigation occurs very quickly, almost immediately and we must not provide unnecessary constraints that can distract and mislead the user.
Always start with the institutional pages (who we are, mission, philosophy), then move on to the products or services or in any case to the “heart” of the menu (catalog, what we do, activities, rooms), then a part more “commercial” (offers, promotions, gift vouchers) and finally the contact section (where we are, how to reach us, info, contacts).
The navigation menu must always be visible and always be in the standard position: on the left, top center or next to the logo or in the sidebar.