Here’s an article that busts the myth that Miller’s 7 +/-2 concept has any bearing on navigation design. Read it, learn it, love it.
YADIA: “IA defines spatial relationships and organizational systems, and seeks to establish hierarchies, taxonomies, vocabularies, and schema—resulting in documentation like sitemaps, wireframes, content types, and user flows, and allowing us to design things like navigation and search systems.”
from Sara Wachter-Boettcher. “Content Everywhere”
Yet Another Definition of IA (YADIA):
“The activity of Information Architecture [is] designing an abstract and effective organization of information and then exposing that organization to facilitate navigation and information use.”
-from The Discipline of Organizing, by Robert Glushko
Yes, you need breadcrumbs on your ecommerce site. You need location breadcrumbs, which show your position in the hierarchy. Because they reveal the site structure, breadcrumbs help answer “Where am I?” and “What else do you have like this?” They help the customer orient and explore.
So excited for Vanessa Foss & @magshanley’s new venture Deeper T. Their first round of UX workshops look amazing: deeper-t.com
Partly to test this blog’s linkage with micro.blog, I thought I’d mention that I’ve been digging back into Designing the Search Experience for inspiration lately. So much good stuff in there about how to turn information behavior studies into practical design solutions. Two words: search modes!