CAEN Knowledge Base
CAEN Knowledge Base

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Enter your question or keyword below to search our knowledge base. At any time, you can click the Blue button in the bottom-right corner of the page to open a Live Chat session with a CAEN consultant. If no consultant is available, you will be prompted to submit an offline message, and the next available consultant will contact you at the email address you provide.

How do I make my website's menu more accessible?

Menus should be organized according to what site visitors need, not according to department organization or preferences. Navigation labels should be brief (1 or 2 words), familiar and different from one another.

  • Avoid jargon and internal language. Resist the urge to use the names of offices or programs in navigation menus
  • Stick with commonly understood terms (ie. Home, Contact, About)
  • Remove repeated words (i.e. Resources, Information, Michigan, Engineering)
  • Remove excessive identifiers (i.e. "Department Contacts" rather than "Graduate Engineering Department Contact List")
  • Step-by-step guidance to wrangle an overgrown navigation menu

Items in the navigation menus should NOT lead to a site with a different navigation. This disorients visitors, and may cause them to distrust your site. This is especially true for the main navigation menu. Instead, create a landing page related to a topical grouping and link to external pages from there.

Navigation menus should also be limited to seven or fewer items:

  • Using more than seven choices increases the mental load on visitors. Humans can only effectively hold seven items in short-term memory. Fewer is better.
  • It's okay if users have to click multiple times, as long as users have a clear sense that they’re moving toward their goal.