Information Architecture (IA) is the process of organizing, structuring, and labeling information so that it is easy to find and understand. It uses sitemaps, navigation, categorizations, hierarchies, and content types.
In eCommerce, good IA (excellent user experience, design, and navigation) are non-negotiable because they impact sales – the customer cannot buy what they cannot find. Online shop navigation should be a series of neatly-organized folders and subfolders (Home > Women > Shoes > Trainers). IA is evaluated through usability testing, bounce rate, and conversion rate. Best practices include:
- Understanding the user by conducting interviews, A/B tests, etc.
- Gently nudging visitors to buy.
- Using consistent and predictable patterns throughout the site.