Steps to create your content plan
- Map out your current content via your existing navigation structure (example)
- Get a true inventory of your current site pages — not all pages will be listed in navigation directly:
- Run a site crawler, like Screaming Frog (it will catch the pages not directly listed in your site navigation/menus) OR
- Pull a list of all URLs from your Drupal/Webspark site (how to) OR
- Pull a list of all site URLs from GSC (how to)
- Use the list of URLs from step two to map out the details (example):
- Content owner(s) for each section and/or page.
- Priority to review.
- Review Google Analytics data for your site to determine high priority pages to address based on traffic.
- Understand the lift needed for each page:
- No or light edits needed? No longer need the page? Consider getting the “low-hanging fruit” reviewed and off your plate as soon as possible.
- Any URL or page name changes.
- Create a revised plan for your site navigation, content structure using this template.
- Review the existing site content against this new structure and assess what needs to be revised, moved or created per the new plan.
Learn more about the navigation components for asu.edu.
Reducing navigation complexity to improve user experience
Reducing complexity can improve user experience which should benefit the goals of your site.
Should your primary navigation link to a page, drop down or mega menu?
- Is the link self explanatory? If the primary navigation link is self explanatory consider linking directly to an overview page.
Linking directly to an overview page may be more useful by revealing related content to the reader and allowing them to act or find what they need more quickly?
Dropping directly into an overview page can also allow you to more closely curate the content and experience what the reader sees for more marketing/storytelling-focused pages.
- Are there a lot of subcategories or even sub-subcategories for your primary site categories? Consider limiting your drop down/mega menus to just the first level of subcategory (like CFO sample).
- What is my new versus returning visitor ratio? Mega menus aren’t intended to show the contents of the entire site but help visitors understand what types of information they can expect to find or reveal popular content to the visitor earlier (which may be beneficial for sites with more returning than new visitors).
Learn more about grouping options within a mega menu.
Using overview pages
- Primary navigation links on asu.edu with drop down menus are click to open.
- Per UX and accessibility best practices a link should have one behavior.
- There are known issues with dropdown menus behaving consistently or as expected or in a way that does not frustrate users when they are built to expand on hover.
- Consider adding overview or introduction page links to your drop down menus in lieu of having the top navigation act as both a link to a page and also a function to expand a drop down menu.
- Overview pages can act as a high-level, packaged landing page experience for a specific topic.
- For deeper sections, secondary navigation can be revealed at the next level.
See an example of how overview pages can be used in primary navigation menus.
Review the navigation structure solution for deeper section navigation.
Navigation solutions for:
Reviewing/editing existing content
- Remember —
- Organize your page content around the user’s needs while supporting your business goals.
- Use language your audience will be using, not internal nomenclature that is unknown to the general public (Moz can help you find keywords people are using to search for your content).
- Make it easy for them to find what they need quickly.
- Underlined text on the web indicates a clickable link — please do not use these for non-linked text.
- Italics are not part of ASU writing style.
- Max character counts have been set to help readability (approx. 75 characters wide or 700 pixels).
- Understand —
- What problem will you be solving for your audience(s) on this page?
- The primary goal/purpose of each page and make it easy for the reader to find the important information or take the next step.
- Consider —
- If conversions are a goal, understand the unique value proposition of your unit/program. What do you offer or focus on that may differ from other, similar programs or competitors? How can this be incorporated into your page?
- People are most likely to skim/scan a page — what does that experience look like on each page? Use visual cues and formatting to break up the content up on a page into scannable sections.
- Headings, bulleted lists, cards, accordions, link grids, buttons, etc., all help users more quickly understand the highlights.
- User testing showed that the selective use of gold on a page, whether in highlights for key headings or the most important button to click on a page, help draw their eye down a page. Drowning a page in gold means it loses its power as a mile marker.
- If selling, be sure to make sure the viewer has had a chance to understand your product before asking them to do something — asking for their information or time too soon can damage their trust.
See all asu.edu options to display content on a page.
Longer pages can be OK if:
- The content is closely related.
- It’s a longer page of related, well-formatted content can be a better user experience than several separate pages with minimal content on each page.
- Using an anchor menu for long pages allows a viewer to quickly understand the (related) categories of content on a page and allows them to skip to sections as needed versus skimming and scrolling.
Page content template
Use this template to help update and plan new content for each page of your site.
Access the template