site navigation

Is your site usable for your users?

We talk a lot about how functional Clubhouse is on the backend (for you to use!), and how the design makes it easy for you to have a site that looks great so as to better attract members. But there’s another aspect of usability that we haven’t touched on as much: user experience.

Put simply, when a visitor drops in on your site, you want them to be able to find the information they came for as readily as possible. The question is, how do you organize your information to fit the needs of your users?

Think about your messaging hierarchy

What’s the most important thing you have to communicate on your site, and who do you have to communicate it to? Make it obvious. Prominently display it so that your users can access it easily. Think about including this information in a banner image or as part of a quick links menu (more on that later).

How do you get the right information to the right people?

Many member sites speak to a number of different groups. For instance:

  • Prospective members
  • Current members
  • Volunteers
  • Donors

Not all of these may apply to you, or you may have an audience not included. However, the key point remains the same: the information most critical to each of these groups will vary depending on their need. Use your menu structure to reflect your audiences and the ways they will use your site.

Use your messaging hierarchy to inform your site navigation

Keeping your main navigation items limited is a good first step. A cluttered menu on your site and makes information hard to find. Identify the broadest and most relevant menu items to sort the rest of your content under, and cut any content that has grown obsolete.

To keep your main navigation menu focused, Clubhouse allows menu items to be organized three tiers deep, with the third tier appearing as a collapsible list for an extra level of usability. We also include a “quick links” menu that allows you to call out the most frequently-accessed pages on your site, particularly if they don’t fit neatly into the main navigation.

Stay up to date

The information on your site may vary in relevancy at different points in the year and as events come and go. Keep the most immediately relevant information on your front page, and be sure to keep it current.

Also, be sure to focus on your present more than your history. Unless the most important thing you have to say about yourself is “we did a bunch of cool things a while ago,” focus your site on your current identity rather than your past.

 

Not on Clubhouse? We’d love to bring you into our community. Contact us today to hear more about what our website can offer your organization.

Published 02/18/16 by Laura Lynch