A ROUGH GUIDE TO INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE (IA)
bad No IA vs Good IA
1. About me
2. Information Architecture (IA)
3. Case study
4. IA Costs and Best practice
5. Questions
bad No IA vs Good IA
 15 years IT experience (UX designer, Project Manager, etc)
 MSc in UX at the IT University of Copenhagen
 Projects in ...
INTRO. UX & IA. THE IA EXPERT.
2 Information Architecture (IA)
Hospital sign: “Entrance at the bodyguard”
Parking sign: “Stop. Don’t park. I cut wheels. (car number)”
Street sign: pay the parking by text message.
 Usability – how easy can a website be used, and how easy can the
user remember the actions necessary to accomplish simpl...
 Organizes information in logical systems
 Labeling systems
 Navigation systems
 Site maps
 Search systems
 Creates ...
METHOD. EXAMPLE. NO IA. GOOD IA.
3 Case study
Method
 Description: testing the usability
and findability of hardware
products on Romanian web shops
 Goal: search soun...
1. Search in the navigation menu
2. Search by using the autosuggest
3. Results obtained by using the autosuggest
4. The co...
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
eMag EvoMag PC Garage Cel DC Shop Flanco Media Galaxy AvStore
Websites analyzed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
!...
SEARCHING FOR A SOUND CARD
Scenario
MOST IMPORTANT FINDINGS/EXAMPLES
No IA
0. Website identity
! update – both websites have the same owner
• Card sorting
• Eye tracking
• Measuring time for finding
elements in the menu
1. Menu organization
• User tests
• Card sorting
• Keywords for relevant
searches
2. Autosuggest and categories
• Way too many options?
• Testing – how many wrong
links does the user click on
3. Search with autosuggest
• Measure the time necessary
to find elements in the page
• Test versions with adds
and without
• Test variants with only ...
• Measure the time necessary
to find elements in the page
• Using eye tracking on the
page – how easy is to find
informati...
• User test – how many
buy/view any of the
recommended products
6. Irrelevant recommendations
Good IA
• Good product list layout
• Products can easily being
compared
1. Product list layout
• Connecting product
categories (sound card and
speakers)
2. Relevant recommendations
• Clear messages – the user
receives feedback after
every important action.
• The product compare area
is clearly displaye...
• Clear messages – the user
receives feedback after every
important action.
• Easy to navigate layout
4. Website Feedback
5. Layout clarity
IS IT WORTH INVESTING IN IA ?
4 IA Cost and Best practice
Disadvantages:
 Money, time and personnel
 Ego problems 
Advantages:
 Reducing costs later
 Verifying design proposal...
1. Test before release any product or idea
2. Instinct and experience are important, but without user tests
nothing can be...
AND ANSWERS 
5 Questions
 Books: Information Architecture for the World Wide Web (Morville),
Smashing UX Design (Allen), A Project Guide to UX Des...
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA
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WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA

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Presentation on best practices in Information Architecture with a case study on the Romanian market of web shops. This is a translated version of the presentation from WIAD 2014 in Bucharest.

DISCLAIMER
All the websites analysed here were used only for presenting a method/technique, not to grade (truly analyse) the websites.
As these were chosen randomly and we do not know the business objectives that drives these websites we can not evaluate objectively the UX of the presented pages, but we can use them to present testing methods for UX.

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WIAD 2014 Bucharest - No IA vs Good IA

  1. 1. A ROUGH GUIDE TO INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE (IA) bad No IA vs Good IA
  2. 2. 1. About me 2. Information Architecture (IA) 3. Case study 4. IA Costs and Best practice 5. Questions bad No IA vs Good IA
  3. 3.  15 years IT experience (UX designer, Project Manager, etc)  MSc in UX at the IT University of Copenhagen  Projects in e-learning, health care and e-commerce  UE work experience  Other interests: tango, biking, design and photography 1 Adrian Iacomi
  4. 4. INTRO. UX & IA. THE IA EXPERT. 2 Information Architecture (IA)
  5. 5. Hospital sign: “Entrance at the bodyguard” Parking sign: “Stop. Don’t park. I cut wheels. (car number)”
  6. 6. Street sign: pay the parking by text message.
  7. 7.  Usability – how easy can a website be used, and how easy can the user remember the actions necessary to accomplish simple tasks.  Interaction Design (IxD) – it refers to the interaction methods with the software and the received feedback. In day to day practice it overlaps with IA and UX.  Information Architecture (IA) – is the art and science that applies brick & mortar architecture principles in organizing information, creating navigation and search systems for a software product.  User Experience Design (UX) – fully encompasses traditional HCI design, and extends it by addressing all aspects of a product or service as perceived by users [Wikipedia]. It can cover IA, Visual Design, IxD and Usability testing. IA, UxD, IxD, Us, etc – the plain word version
  8. 8.  Organizes information in logical systems  Labeling systems  Navigation systems  Site maps  Search systems  Creates personas  User tests  Creates storyboards and scenarios, etc. The IA expert
  9. 9. METHOD. EXAMPLE. NO IA. GOOD IA. 3 Case study
  10. 10. Method  Description: testing the usability and findability of hardware products on Romanian web shops  Goal: search sound card  Method: user testing  Analyze: finding IA problems and proposing solutions
  11. 11. 1. Search in the navigation menu 2. Search by using the autosuggest 3. Results obtained by using the autosuggest 4. The compare products function 5. Display product 6. Contact web shop from the product page 7. Feedback shopping basket 8. Recommendations from the product page 9. Recommendations after sale Analyze Web shops
  12. 12. 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 eMag EvoMag PC Garage Cel DC Shop Flanco Media Galaxy AvStore Websites analyzed 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 ! The test is made only to showcase UX methods, it is not a precise benchmark
  13. 13. SEARCHING FOR A SOUND CARD Scenario
  14. 14. MOST IMPORTANT FINDINGS/EXAMPLES No IA
  15. 15. 0. Website identity ! update – both websites have the same owner
  16. 16. • Card sorting • Eye tracking • Measuring time for finding elements in the menu 1. Menu organization
  17. 17. • User tests • Card sorting • Keywords for relevant searches 2. Autosuggest and categories
  18. 18. • Way too many options? • Testing – how many wrong links does the user click on 3. Search with autosuggest
  19. 19. • Measure the time necessary to find elements in the page • Test versions with adds and without • Test variants with only the shopping cart button colorful 4. The importance of page elements
  20. 20. • Measure the time necessary to find elements in the page • Using eye tracking on the page – how easy is to find information in the page ? • Supporting the website objective – selling products? 5. Product page layout
  21. 21. • User test – how many buy/view any of the recommended products 6. Irrelevant recommendations
  22. 22. Good IA
  23. 23. • Good product list layout • Products can easily being compared 1. Product list layout
  24. 24. • Connecting product categories (sound card and speakers) 2. Relevant recommendations
  25. 25. • Clear messages – the user receives feedback after every important action. • The product compare area is clearly displayed. 3. Adding to the shopping cart
  26. 26. • Clear messages – the user receives feedback after every important action. • Easy to navigate layout 4. Website Feedback
  27. 27. 5. Layout clarity
  28. 28. IS IT WORTH INVESTING IN IA ? 4 IA Cost and Best practice
  29. 29. Disadvantages:  Money, time and personnel  Ego problems  Advantages:  Reducing costs later  Verifying design proposals  Creating the right products for the client in need, at the right time IA cost
  30. 30. 1. Test before release any product or idea 2. Instinct and experience are important, but without user tests nothing can be sure 3. All layouts must be created by following the main goal of the page 4. Keep consistency in navigation and design 5. Use autosuggest with relevant results 6. Make IA/UX an important part of the software project creation Best practice
  31. 31. AND ANSWERS  5 Questions
  32. 32.  Books: Information Architecture for the World Wide Web (Morville), Smashing UX Design (Allen), A Project Guide to UX Design (Unger), Sketching User Experiences (Buxton), Don't Make Me Think! (Krug), Designing for interaction (Saffer), The design of everyday things (Norman), The elements of User Experience (Garrett), etc  Websites: www.uxbooth.com, www.iainstitute.org, uxmag.com, www.smashingmagazine.com, www.interaction-design.org  Conferences: WIAD, 2014.iasummit.org, www.ux-lx.com, www.euroia.org. IA resources

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