Search is a ubiquitous term we use freely and imprecisely. By understanding the different types of search and user behaviours around search, we can design better content structure to support better search.
Using search terms as part of a content audit can give insight into the structure of your site. You can analyze these search terms to inform your taxonomy and future content efforts, and to evaluate the findability of content on your site.
While doing a content audit, analytics are a great way to dig into what's happening with content on your site.
A website content audit gives you a both a great overview and in-depth knowledge of the current state of your website content.
Learn of some challenges we faced on a large website overhaul.
Once you understand what information architecture (IA) is, you may wonder why exactly it is that you need it, in order to have a successful site. Maybe your site has some usability problems or suffers from common taxonomy mistakes, but isn’t that something that anyone can just go in and adjust with a few tweaks of the design? Technically, yes. But you’re most likely only resolving a surface level issue with a band-aid fix, as opposed to addressing the real website problems that you’re suffering from.
Is your customer service team spending most of their time answering questions that are directly answered on your website? Is your bounce rate far higher than it should it be? Is the most used function of your website the search bar? All of these common website usability problems are symptoms and signs of poor information architecture. Information architecture (IA) aims to connect users with the content that they are looking for, in a seamless and intuitive manner.
When looking to improve the searchability on your website or intranet or in your CMS or DAM, there are a few areas where you can look to solve searchability problems. This second part in a two-part series focuses on solving searchability problems.
When I talk with customers about website problems, I frequently hear the refrain: "Our website search is terrible. People tell us it sucks. We need to fix it." Or "I can't find anything on the website and the search doesn't give me what I am expecting." There are a few areas where we can look to fix search problems. Normally, I start with user interviews and testing, then move on to reviewing site analytics, metadata, and taxonomy.
Faced with a design mandate, this government organization needed to do research before designing the solution to ensure the solution was appropriate for its audiences. We helped this organization go through interviews, analysis, journey mapping, and information architecture work.
On the surface, audience based navigation seems to make sense. In user-centred design, we design for the user. If we group information based on the different users we've identified, then the user will know where to look on the website. In my early days, I did once try my hand at audience based navigation and quickly learned a few things (and felt an immense amount of frustration).
You've probably heard that better user experience on a website is good for SEO, but what does that actually mean? There are a few specific ways information architecture and taxonomy improve SEO.
Maybe the website isn't well organized. Maybe users don't take the time to look through the website. Maybe users have had bad experiences in the past and can't be bothered to look on the website. Rest assured there are you can improve content findability with better website information architecture.
Purdys contacted Key Pointe because sections of their website weren’t delivering needed results for their fundraising and group purchase programs. We reviewed these areas and provided recommendations to Purdys.
Here's a roundup of the articles and presentation for Diagnosing and Solving Content Problems from the 2014 Intelligent Content Conference.
When looking to improve the findability on your website or intranet or in your CMS or DAM, there are a few areas where you can look to diagnose and solve findability problems. To find these problems, you can do an expert review and user testing. This second part in a two-part series focuses on solving findability problems.
When looking to improve the findability on your website or intranet or in your CMS or DAM, there are a few areas where you can look to diagnose and solve findability problems. To find these problems, you can do an expert review and user testing. This first part in a two-part series focuses on diagnosing findability problems.
When improving a website or intranet (or any content product), you can focus on findability with an IA review and assessment and with card sorting and task testing. This article focuses on how to improve findability through card sorting.
Keeping a taxonomy up-to-date will be very useful in re-purposing content on the site, tagging content properly so you can find it again, and allowing visitors to filter the content. Learn about why and how to use a taxonomy.
Hierarchical taxonomies are best suited to things where the relationship is well known. You can use a faceted taxonomy when multiple, similar values can be applied to dissimilar items.
Working with a content strategist, we took Rocky View through a user-centred design process, then created a new information architecture and content strategy. During our research, it became clear that Rocky View served a diverse and geographically dispersed community which needed geographically appropriate information.
In information architecture, there are a few deliverables meant to communicate the information design to all the stakeholders. Here's a brief overview of what can be delivered on an IA project and why these things are important.
This portfolio item details the work done for a technology standards client.