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Navigation: Choose Your Words Carefully

Are you tempted to create unique, clever descriptions for different areas of your site? If so, resist! Recently a friend reminded me of this rule when she asked me to critique her new restaurant's Web site. There were five pages:

Clever, but confusing navigation

I told her the page names were really smart, then I begged her to change them. Visitors have so little time, often just seconds, to make choices online. They need to instantly understand how to get what they want; and the more they have to think about how to navigate your site, the less they'll think about you and your products. Now the pages on my friend's site are:

Simple, understandable navigation

It's not unique or clever, but it's clear enough that visitors don't have to think about where to go. So now they can focus on the important part--the business.

Jennifer Frost is Art Director at Register.com.

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