Why even bother with a digital product if it is not logically organized for the users? If you develop a cutting-edge product but overwhelm the user with information, it is most likely to fail. This is why information architecture has become a streamlined discipline.
Just like a good building needs a strong foundation, a compelling user experience needs a logical information architecture.
The primary goal of information architecture is to offer the information in the most logical and the best possible manner. Therefore, it is often confused with user experience.
User experience is a broader term that takes the psychological aspects of the users into account. It is aimed at offering an intuitive experience to the users of the product with enough ways and means to perform desired tasks. However, information structure is the backbone of the process of defining a good user experience. There is no good user experience without a good information structure.
With the advancing technologies and perennially complexing user behavior patterns, it gets difficult to arrange the content and make it understandable for the users. In addition, the competition to develop user-centered products is also continuously increasing. Under these circumstances, you can’t afford to rely on partly or non-skilled information architects with the fate of your product.
|Grow your business with a team trained by professionals for designing information structures.|
We pay a little more attention to ensure that both user experience and information architecture meet the business goals, independently and together. Talk to our experts today if you need your team to be trained by the best information architects in the industry!
‘Our ultimate goal is to simplify the complexities by logically arranging the information, delivering the best user experience.’- Metapercept’s Team
We have seen the evolving needs and the ongoing trends! It is important to align information architecture design with these dynamics to ensure usability and findability. Our focus is on empowering the end-users to find their solutions effortlessly.
Content and labeling have a vital role to play in offering solutions to the users. However, information architecture makes sure that the user reaches the content it is looking for. If organized content doesn’t even reach its users, it will be a failure! This is where experts come into play!
Dan Brown, the founder of EightShapes, has shared eight foundational principles of information architecture. These principles lay down the guiding framework for information structure design.
|1. The principle of objects – Treat content as a living, breathing thing, with a lifecycle, behaviors, and attributes.|
2. The principle of choices – Create pages that offer meaningful choices to users, keeping the range of choices available focused on a particular task.
3. The principle of disclosure – Show only enough information to help people understand what kinds of information they’ll find as they dig deeper.
4. The principle of exemplars – Describe the contents of categories by showing examples of the contents.
5. The principle of front doors – Assume at least half of the website’s visitors will come through some page other than the home page.
6. The principle of multiple classifications – Offer users several different classification schemes to browse the site’s content.
7. The principle of focused navigation – Don’t mix apples and oranges in your navigation scheme.
8. The principle of growth – Assume the content you have today is a small fraction of the content you will have tomorrow.
These are general principles that can be implemented by the product managers and information architects for presenting a useful and organized information structure.
Content and functionality are the heart and mind of a digital product. Information architecture, on the other hand, is the system that keeps the product going!
Investing in information architecture isn’t something you can afford to compromise with. It lays the foundation for a smooth user experience. We can’t emphasize enough the importance of building relationships between individual features and content pieces. Following are the principles we follow for designing information architecture or training professionals who want to become information architects:
Set clear business goals
We align the information architecture with business goals. Organizational vision and capabilities must reflect in the digital product.
Understand user expectations
It is important to understand the needs and demands of the users. We build the structure of the information that best serves the needs of the end-users.
Build, group, and label content
Our team creates content pieces and labels them to help users find them easily. In addition, we pay close attention to grouping these content pieces in a logical manner based on the users’ interaction with the product.
Understand patterns of user-to-product interaction
As mentioned above, labeling of content is done after users’ pattern of interacting with the product is analyzed. Thorough research is undertaken to understand before defining the flow of the information.
We perform cognitive testing to ensure that the users are not overwhelmed with the information. It is only after passing multiple quality checks that the information architecture is finalized.
Information structure is the skeleton of the digital product. The fate of the product is dependent on the flow of the information. Users should be able to understand the information and not get overwhelmed by it. Therefore, it is imperative to let the experts, who have rich experience in information architecture design, work on the information design. It ensures a good user experience and optimum functionality. If you are looking forward to upskilling your team to design information architecture efficiently and effectively, avail our training services. Our clients are Avaya, Actifio, Infosys, and many more. We have industry experts with years of experience in training information architects.
Author: Ruchi Rai, Technical Writer, Metapercept Technology Services LLP