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Thursday, Dec. 22, 2005 at 12:00 pm

I’m Just Browsing

By Josh Hay
December 22nd, 2005

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(what’s this?)

Walking around Manhattan, the crowds are just too much for me. That’s why I’m trying to buy most of my presents online. I like to browse the stores for presents and the easiest way for me to browse around sites is using the navigation. Stores usually are laid out with different departments that display specific styles. Websites have to use navigation to accomplish this. They forget that they have to speak to the visitor in their language to help guide them with the buying process. This language helps guide the visitor to find what they look for by using specific categories provided by the navigation.

Many visitors immediately are baffled by the navigation titles on websites. The navigation is only useful if it can be understood. For example Sephora.com has a category named “smile”. What kind of product is a “smile”? Bloomingdales.com has a section named “beauty” and Fossil.com has a category named “watch bar”. Can I get some drinks after work at your watch bar?

Visitors use their own trigger words to describe their search.  If navigation is the means by which we get around a site, and the business owners use their own terms, or terms with little meaning in the context of the search, navigation (and momentum) ceases. Don’t you think the customers would appreciate it if you spoke to them in their own terms?

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Comments (3)

  1. Thank you for your timely thought. Man I hate websites that are so self centric that they leave the customer dangling and they wonder why they aren’t doing more business online.

  2. Thanks for creating this blog site. this is really helpful for me and my friends!

    We would be honored if we could be added to this blogger. We are from the World Business for sale is the leading independent businesses for sale listing service.

  3. Happy New Year Everyone!

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