Website Design & Build

eCommerce Navigation Best Practices

We’ve distilled our knowledge from years of working on large scale eCommerce websites, conducting user research and data analysis so we can share what best practice eCommerce UX design looks like with you. This post looks at Navigation best practices.

We see many brands treating navigation as the tedious cousin of the product page – left ignored to stand alone in the corner of the dance hall.

Brands often hide navigation under a burger menu on desktop sites (please don’t do that) or forego investing in a deeper consideration of the best structure for their catalogue altogether. Yet, navigation is the key element that users rely on to manoeuvre through your website and to make sense of your offering.

Make no mistake, failing to get your navigation right will severely hamper both your customers’ browsing experience and the commercial efforts of your brand.

A first-class navigation is achievable, and we can show you what one looks like. A well-designed navigation presents a website structure that makes sense to your customers, and you can verify this by testing it with them. A great navigation will use descriptive, non-technical link titles. It will be consistent across mobile and desktop. It will draw attention to the key tasks’ customers will want to perform on your website, and is designed with both aesthetics and ease of use in mind.

Check list – Does your navigation perform in this way?

• Provide a clear visual hierarchy that distinguishes categories from sub-categories and their links

• Provide a mobile navigation pattern appropriate for the site’s IA: accordion, sequential or section

• If phone support is important, have click-to-call available at the top of every page on mobile views

• If physical stores are an important sales channel, include a store locator icon in mobile navigation

• Design buttons and links with clear affordance and provide visual engagement feedback

Further Reading