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Sitemap design - alphabetical or categorical?

In this study from 1999 SURL compared search performance with three types of sitemap designs:
1. Alphabetized sitemap
2. Full categorical sitemap
3. Restricted categorical sitemap, where the links of only one category is visible at the time

Results:
- Categorical sitemaps had significantly higher numbers of successful searches
- Users were significantly more satisfied with the categorical sitemaps
- The full categorical sitemap was the most preferred

The participants found that it was difficult to find information in alphabetized sitemaps because they had to guess how the links are worded. They also said that the full sitemap design was preferred to the restricted because it was easier to compare information between the categories.

Links:

  • The article Sitemap Design: Alphabetical or Categorical?

Henrik Olsen - March 06, 2005

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