What Is Website Structure? Why Structure Is Important?

A wireframe is a schematic representation of a website or an app that displays the navigation and interface of a website. An IA wireframe shows all the pages and screens of a product, with headlines, tags, labels, and grey boxes where the content will be placed. Index pages pattern – consists of a home page and equally important subpages.

In such a structure, the web designer links the subpages in a hierarchical, and sequential manner, keeping in view the ease of users. The webbed website structure is mostly used for informative and catalog basis websites. It is most suitable for businesses related to cosmetics, retail, apparel, etc.

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We recommend downloading the spreadsheet before you dive into the guide so you can take notes of structures you like as you go. Your site structure needs to be like a choose your own adventure book without a set starting point. No matter what page your visitors enter on, and no matter what content they’re after, your structure needs to ensure they’re able to get where they want to go. Here is a well-designed basic website hierarchy structure example. You can download the original file by clicking on the links below. Not only is this bad for SEO, but it’s a bad user experience too.

  • The website structure you choose will largely depend on the type of website you’re building.
  • Designing a good site structure seems easy and it is easy for small sites or blogs but for medium and large sites, maintaining a good site structure can be a very big problem sometimes.
  • Please keep it simple, reachable, and straight to the point.
  • Organic structure does not have the principles of content cataloging, and it can only be implemented in conditions when the links between the content are not established.
  • The final touch to your perfect website architecture will be your approach to internal linking in the content.
  • This is largely due to the fact that the developers did not pay enough attention to the systematization of information on the Internet for a long time.

These are links on webpages or blog posts that point to other relevant content on other webpages. Contextual links are useful in showing users related content. In the context of a blog post, contextual links can be used to point users to other blog posts that have similar content.

Website Architecture For Search Engines

But when your site architecture is simple, it’s SUPER easy for users to pop around your site to find what they need. The first step in designing a solid website structure is performing some market research. Look at your competitors’ sites to see how they’ve structured their sites.

Website structure example

Read more about the implementation of UX research methodology at the early stages of product development in our article. Each of the above mentioned approaches solves particular problems. Before starting a website development, you should remember that each approach website structure has its pros and cons. It is harder to work out a detailed content with the “top-down” approach. A linear website structure displays content in sequential order from one page to the next. The best example of this is the checkout process on sites like KKW Beauty.

Once it is established, it’s impossible to change the overall flow and website setup. Second, and perhaps of the same importance as the first point, is Search Engine Optimization . The better and more logical your site structure, the greater UX, SEO, and other benefits you’ll see. Deciding how your website should be structured takes time and careful thought.

Are people just looking for an answer to a question or a definition? You can also use Google’s search results to create great content that fits someone’s needs. One internal linking caution you should exercise, though, is not stuffing keywords into your link’s anchor text.

Internal linking enhances the website’s structure and improves navigation. Therefore, many technical SEO specialists say that each page should have at least one internal link. Contextual links are similar or suggested pages that are listed on a website. For example, a blog article may feature a list of articles on a similar topic for interested readers, or an ecommerce company will feature additional products. The internal linking suggestions even include other content typesMoreover, our tool allows you to indicate which articles you consider to be cornerstone content on your site.

Improving Customer Experience With The Help Of User

Once you narrow down those needs you can match them to the best option for your new site with little effort. The big takeaway here is that choosing the right one is vital because no matter the type of site, everything within your site sits on a structure as a base. The image below gives an example of a simple linear-style site structure.

If users can navigate easily through your site, can find the information or products they are looking for without hassles, the chances of them becoming your customer is highly increased. You do want to limit the amount of effort required for visitors to access key information or accomplish a task on your site. Instead, you should focus on creating clear pathways, reducing page load time, and removing other friction points in the user journey. While this idea has become deeply entrenched in the world of web design, it’s been largely discredited.

Here, we’ll briefly list what can be of help at different stages. As you have already seen, almost every stage has its own deliverables. But the most important deliverable that unites the results of an information architect’s hard work is a sitemap. Now, let’s look at some actual website sitemaps to see how they structure their content. Principle of multiple classification — offer users several different classification schemes to browse the site’s content. You can make it on paper or using different tools like WriteMaps or MindNode.

The participants are given predefined categories from a content inventory list, and they sort the content according to them. At the end of this stage, you’ll end up with a user profile and user flow that illustrate the way a user thinks and interacts with a product. When you have all the necessary information about the product and the people who use/will use it, you can go to the next step. When you link to pages within your site, those internal links convey context through page relevance, link intent, anchor text and even the copy surrounding the link. Internal links also pass important link equity, or PageRank, to key lead generating landing pages throughout your site. Site architecture is often described in terms of flat vs deep.

Where it makes sense, it’s perfectly fine to create a second menu. On top you’ll find the homepage, right below that the main sections or categories, possibly followed by subcategories. On the ground you’ll find all the individual posts and pages. Structuring your website is crucial for both its usability and findability. Many sites lack a sound structure to guide visitors to the information they’re looking for. Having a clear site structure also leads to a better understanding of your site by Google, so it’s incredibly important for your SEO.

Upgrade Your Website Architecture And Improve Your Seo

Second, site architecture sends link authority around the website. When you link high traffic pages, the page rank of your website’s pages will increase. The third and most important aspect is if your website architecture is well-done, users will be more comfortable while visiting your website, which helps your SEO. Breadcrumbs tell users where they are within your site structure while providing an easy navigation path back to a parent category. Further breadcrumbs also give search engines more context about your site’s hierarchy. So implement a breadcrumb structure that matches your site navigation.

Many things should be considered, specifically metadata and taxonomies of the content. Think of this as the go-to option for allowing users to create their own experience using search tools. This type of website structure can be found in sites such as small businesses that have a small number of pages — things without subcategories or child pages. They take a visitor through a predefined sequence in other words. There needs to be a healthy balance of logical reasoning for decisions on page placement and understanding that it cannot cause restrictions for users who want to jump around the site.

The main goal here is to check if users can easily get what they need from your app or website. Testing activities can be conducted at different stages of the design https://globalcloudteam.com/ process to guide designers and polish IA. They are often a part of the research phase, especially if you’re looking for ways to redesign an existing app or website.

Website Hierarchy Structure Examples And Templates

A good structure should, therefore, lead to a higher ranking in Google. A good website structured is necessary for higher rankings and increased traffic. It helps both your readers and search engines to navigate your site easily.

Step 2 Collect A Websites Keyword List And Divide It Into Groups

A website developer is your best bet when it comes to designing and developing a website’s structure. They may work alongside other professionals, like UX/UI designers. A sitemap file is a map search engines can use to navigate your website. It tells crawl bots which pages are important and how they are connected to each other. If you want search engines to crawl your website quickly and efficiently, you need a sitemap.

However, while it’s really easy to follow this rule at the beginning of a site’s life, it’s much harder to stick with it as your site grows. While this is not a “hard” rule and it won’t drop all your rankings if you go past it slightly, it’s still a good personal guideline to follow. Now that we understand why website architecture is so important, let’s look at the core principles you should follow to achieve top SEO rankings through website architecture.

Why Ecommerce Site Structure Matters?

These links show a page’s parent pages all the way to the home page. They’re typically placed above the page’s title and have arrows showing the path to the current page. Your website’s navigation format, design principles, and link displays should all follow a consistent pattern. Keeping these elements the same will keep your users on your site longer because it’ll be easier for them to quickly navigate to new pages and click on links. So far, we’ve mostly discussed the functionality of navigation menus, but tweaking the styling can make for a delightful user experience as well. Take Pipcorn’s website for example — its horizontal navigation reveals vertical dropdowns that expand in a gorgeous animation.

Secondary vertical menu Other useful categories such as utility pages can be placed on the footer of the website. This is why website structuring should be the first step in any web design project. A new website or even a restructuring can benefit from choosing a specific style that suits the needs of the content and intent of the website.

It’s the idea that every website navigation structure should enable someone to land on any page on a website and find what they need within three clicks. Twitter features one of the standard navigation types — the vertical sidebar menu — but with a twist. Instead of simply featuring text navigation items, it includes icons next to each item. The only other pop of color in the nav bar is the CTA button. In the example below, Boston College does a nice job of using an audience-based approach in combination with an object-based navigation. Cognitive studies provide evidence that web page viewers tend to remember links on either end of the navigation most vividly.

Having a secure website is very important, especially for ecommerce websites. What you should do instead is to create a separate menu for mobile and include ONLY those options that are really necessary for navigation purposes. To help you visualize how a hierarchical structure looks like, have a look at the following diagram. Your home page is at the top of the hierarchy and below you can have 2 or 3 levels before you reach the bottom of the hierarchy – your product pages. A well organized and defined site structure is crucial for this process to work as planned. Not only they can attract more clicks to the most important pages of your website but they are also good for branding.

— Choose the right site structure for your audience and content. In my experience, it is more advantageous in the long run to focus on making the site as logical as possible for the users first. As we’ve mentioned, a good structure often results in getting sitelinks and standing out in the SERP. Regardless of the complexity of your structure, make sure each page can be easily accessed, in no more than 3 clicks from anywhere on the website.

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