Information architecture is the structuring and organization of your website’s content,
functionality, navigation and search schemes. The information architecture that we
develop for you will be based around both your business goals and user needs. Ultimately
for your website, this will:
Following on from the information architecture process, we can design and build web page
templates for all wireframe designs through our accessible CSS web design service.
- User research & content requirements
The information architecture process typically begins with us meeting with and interviewing
key stakeholders. This will help us gain a thorough understanding of your business
and user needs, as well as any technical constraints you may have. We would also
conduct highly focused user research (usually in the form of user interviews
& contextual enquiry) to give us and you a complete understanding of your user’s
needs, goals and behaviours.
Based on your business strategy and customer needs, we'll create a content inventory
that lists key content and functionality to appear on your site.
- Information structuring & categorization
To create the best possible information architecture for your site, we'll conduct
card sorting to understand how users organize the site information 'in their
heads'. We'll analyze the results and produce a site map designed around how
your users think (and not how you as an organization are structured).
During the card sorting, we'll check that users can understand the planned navigation
labels and descriptions. We'll record these labels and descriptions in a controlled
vocabulary that we and you can use to decide the labeling of new content and
functionality as your site grows.
If you need it, we'll also create a metadata scheme that describes your site features
and content in a scheme that will support flexible site structures and navigation.
- Page & navigation design
Based on both your customer needs and your business goals we'll design a navigation
scheme that enables users to move around the site's information architecture
quickly and effectively. We'll produce wireframes that show global and local
navigation, as well as supplementary navigation (to link related items together
using your metadata scheme).
Wireframes are blueprints (or schematics) of page designs that contain all the major
elements of a real page, without any graphic design. We'll design the wireframes
in such a way that they're comprehensible, well-structured and support both user
and business goals. Wireframes work in much the same way that architectural blue
prints define a building's structure.
Finally, we'll convert the wireframes into a working prototype and carry out usability
testing on the prototype. We'll recruit a small number of individuals from your
target audience and have them complete typical tasks they would carry out on
the finished website. The wireframes are then adjusted accordingly.