Be Navigable

You are here
Provide a search function
Provide escape paths

If you don’t know where you are, how can you get where you want to go?

Navigable: Easily plan and travel a desired course.

/ˈnavɪɡəb(ə)l/

You are here: always keep the user informed

How does the user know where they are?

At all times the system should provide clear evidence to users about where they are, what is happening, what their options are, and what the consequences of their actions will be.

Make it blindingly obvious at all times, what every item’s type is and what its current state is.

Always provide a useful search function

What will the user want to find?

Applications typically require search and select functionality as part of navigation. This should be built in to ever page that needs it, not just on a starting page. Advanced search should be no more than one click away.

Always provide escape paths

How do I cancel and go back?

It should be a single action to back out when a user finds themselves where they don’t want to be, or when they want to take back their actions if they change their mind. Help users prevent, recognise, diagnose, and recover from errors with messages in plain language (no codes) that precisely indicate the problem, and constructively suggest a solution. Remember also not to oblige the user to remember details of the message if possible.