Test and improve your IA

Conduct usability testing to further refine your information architecture (IA) as you go. This will help ensure that you build an IA that helps users navigate your site easily.

Test your IA

You can test your IA using software programs or on a prototype of your site with a clickable IA. This could even just be a spreadsheet with collapsed/expandable sections.

It can be worthwhile to involve 1 or 2 of people who were involved in the initial user research.

You don’t need to test the IA with a lot of people. Make sure you select a range of people from your target audiences. We recommend between 5-10 people.

Conduct usability testing to:

  • increase confidence for your team before the build phase
  • identify any issues within the IA to be fixed
  • provide an evidence base for the IA design, if people question decisions later in the process.

Improve your IA

Improve your IA to meet the needs of your users.

Review the results of your testing and fix issues any issues. Once you make the changes, re-test with users. Based on the results, you may need to refine your proposed structure and page titles to better meet user needs.

Improving your IA won’t end once you have tested and validated your IA with users. It’s a continual practice. You may find that you need to make additional changes that weren’t clear until you started drafting content. For example, where it would be more useful for the user to read a proposed page in 2 parts.

When you have launched your new IA, user feedback will also highlight refinements you need to make.

When you make changes to your IA, consider the value of re-testing with users.