Digital Experience Optimization Requires More Thoughtful Information Architecture

Quick Summary: It may seem simple to layout a website’s information architecture, but oftentimes a company’s website is designed to fit the content first, not solve customer problems.

The way your website is laid out and the paths in which site visitors navigate through your pages is often overlooked or taken for granted entirely. Smart information architecture can not only promote a smoother digital experience for your customers, but it can also contribute to your bottom line.
More thoughtful information architecture (IA), with an aim to build a modern digital experience, takes careful consideration of the content assets on your website. That consideration leads to the development of functionality site visitors have come to expect, and creates a cohesive focus on solving customer problems above all else.
Learn how we’re designing websites with a more thoughtful approach to information architecture in 2022.

Review the Structure of Your Current Website 

Whether you had planned the information architecture of your current website, or it was thrown together from a mix of other priorities and objectives, the current structure of your website is still influencing site visitors. Review the Behavior Flow data in your Google Analytics account to see where people are navigating to throughout your site, and where they’re dropping off.
You should also review what content is generating traffic, and the landing pages people are finding other than your homepage. Run a content audit on your site to discover the content that is generating the most interest, and the content that has fallen off since its publish date. That will give you ideas when creating your top navigation. Use the most popular content and messaging for your top navigation to get visitors where they want to go on your website sooner.

Develop Functionality Visitors Expect to Solve Their Problems

It may seem simple to layout a website’s information architecture, but oftentimes a company’s website is designed to fit the content first, not solve customer problems. Rather than creating a website that attracts and engages users, the website is overgrown and bloated with content that’s no longer useful to the audience
When developing your website, run user testing to develop functionality that is intuitive to your users, not confusing. If the tool or widget is distracting or not particularly useful, it may be better to remove it entirely for something simpler. Simpler is often the smarter choice. If customers are confused when visiting your website, they may end up bouncing, rather than turning into a qualified lead.

Remember That You’re Not Your End-User

One foundational principle of user experience design is to remember that you’re not your end user. Designing for yourself can sometimes help you get started, but often that leads to decisions that don’t have the site visitor in mind.
Research the right information architecture for your end-user by running card sorting tests, letting them sort your website content into the most logical order that works for them. Other research tests include tree testing, tracking how users follow a path through your website to see the effectiveness and ease of use of your navigation.

Add Smarter Structure to Your Information Architecture

Information architecture can solve a lot of problems for your business website, or it can create them for your users. Don’t take your IA for granted. Think carefully about how your site visitors are looking to interact with your business, and what your business hopes they achieve on your website.
Smart information architecture can not only promote a smoother digital experience for your customers, but it can also contribute to your bottom line. Review your current content assets, develop functionality site visitors expect, and create a sharp focus on solving customer problems to ace your information architecture in 2022.

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