Your website navigation menu can either help or confuse your site visitors. Here’s how to help them the most!
I’ve already written a little about reducing the clutter on your website navigation bar. Too many choices are just going to confuse your users and if you have to make them think and read, well, they won’t. They’ll leave. You really don’t want more than 7 items in your menu, and I really believe that fewer = better.
Interestingly, the order matters too. Users are much more likely to select the first and/or the last item in your navigation menu.
What does that mean to you? It means you can influence where a site visitor goes on your website. Put your most important links first and last in your menu.
The first navigation link in your website menu
When you’re building out your menu, there’s always a good case to made for playing to expectations. Like I’ve mentioned before, you really want to reduce the amount of thinking and wondering that your visitors have to do if you want to keep them on your site.
Often, the first item in a navigation menu is Home. Personally, I don’t see any use for this unless you display something important on your home page, your blog is on your home page, or it’s a starting point of a process. It’s usually an introduction/landing page and visitors don’t have a need to go back to it. In addition, most sites link their logo back to the home page, and most visitors know this.
The next most popular choice (in my completely unscientific poll of the internet) is the About page. This is a good choice if you have a really killer About page and you want visitors to see it. If you have a compelling story on your page that will kick off a relationship with a visitor, this makes sense.
Another good choice is a link to your Blog – if you update it regularly. You blog is an opportunity to give away great, free content to visitors. If you can help people with your blog, they’d be silly not to join your email list. A sales page or list of services page can also be good here.
Whatever you put in the first position, think it through and do it on purpose. You can even test out different options to see if you can influence which pages are clicked and which pages are most beneficial to you.
The last navigation link in your website menu
The expected last item on a menu is the Contact link. This can be helpful if you’re hoping that a visitor will reach out. It’s all going to depend on your own processes. It’s one of the first places people look when they do want to contact you.
Another very effective last menu item is a call to action item that is highlighted to look like a button. That can be a phone number, a link to a landing page for a lead magnet, a link to a sales page for a product/service, or a link to a “work together” page with a project inquiry form.
That top right area is very visible, so you should make good use of it!
Organize your navigation menu
Let’s tie this back to lead generation! If you think about a lead as someone who may, in the future, become a customer, a lot of this can also be thought of as good customer service. If you keep your visitors from having to think too hard, the ones that are a good match for you will stay on your site longer, have a more positive opinion of you, and will be much more likely to consume your content. This happy bunch is much more likely to buy something from you than a group who got confused and spend an extra few minutes hunting down your contact info.
Go back to your website and take a look at the order of your navigation menu items. Do you have 7 or less? Are your most important links in the first and last position? Fix it up if you need to!
Pin this to your lead generation board on Pinterest to remember!
You're a business-owning mom, so you use this guide to prioritize your tasks in 2 minutes, and have 41 minutes left to knock out a task.