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  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot LadyLily's Avatar
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    How Many Clicks?

    I've always been told that between three to four (at the most) clicks should be taken for the user to get to his/her destination. I'm wondering if four is actually an okay place to start. Or even five? Would five clicks be too much?
    Here's my story: I have a lot of content to get through and I don't want the links to go all the way down the page. The user will probably have some idea what they want from my database. I can easily categorize the content into a five or so categories. But more clicking.
    So...it's either nice, smooth layout or less clicks.
    -LadyLily
    You know the Legend of Zelda Series?
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  2. #2
    What? Maelstrom's Avatar
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    I am a big fan of few clicks. But for heavy content that is being explained well I can easily live with 4 or 5. Some tutorial sights require upwards of 4 to get to the tutorial and then 10 to 12 to work your way through it.
    Maelstrom Personal - Apparition Visions
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  3. #3
    SitePoint Member robbie's Avatar
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    I think 4 as a general limit. This still gives enough leeway for dividing the content into categories, thus keeping the design nice.
    ::robbie::
    ::toddlerart::

  4. #4
    Back in Action Winged Spider's Avatar
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    I've always try to get the entire site reachable by 2 clicks. It takes some very tricky organazation and planning but hopefully my users appreciate what I'm doing.

    I'm working on a content heavy site right now that might have to stretch to 3 clicks. 4 just seems to much to find what I'm looking for.


  5. #5
    SitePoint Wizard Ian Glass's Avatar
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    I think this all depends on what is necessary. Visitors shouldn't have to click unnecessarily, at the same time wading through unrelated content it both tedious and undesirable. It's all about the users perception that they reached their content efficiently, not necessarily the number of clicks, and not necessarily the actual time it takes.

    If you take a look at the Webmonkey site, I think you find they've handled this dilemma quite effectively. On their home page, you get a listing with there most recent articles placed in the most prominent place. If what you're looking for isn't there, you also have the option to search their site, and, finally, you can creep down the directory structure. Other successful sites use similar approaches.

    I think that in your case, search will be a key tool for your users -- have a good one, or many people will give up. Also, I think that clear and descriptive labeling and effective grouping will be doubly important, because you don't want people backtracking up the site structure -- sooner or later they'll give up that way too.

    ~~Hope This Helps

  6. #6
    SitePoint Zealot LadyLily's Avatar
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    Lately I've been using on eof the DHTML heirarchy menus, which has gone really well for as long as I have had it. A maximium of around three clicks to get to the ultimate destination. I also have a nice search tool to help with the site.

    But the menu seems to make the site look a little...messy. Maybe it's just the rest of the layout but I dont' know.

    I also notice that Webmonkey uses such a menu on their own home site. Perhaps I could incorperate that much better into my design.

    One last comment: We talk about the "visitors" and "users" as animals. Just an interesting observation....
    -LadyLily
    You know the Legend of Zelda Series?
    Who doesn't?
    Link's Worlds

  7. #7
    1-800-JMULDER JMulder's Avatar
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    I usually want to get the visitor to their destination in less than 4 clicks. I own a site focused on a game, the sections that are really active like a forum, a downloads and user-submitted vehicles..things like that, I want the visitor to be there with one click.

    If they want to go deeper in the game's information, two clicks is enough.

    Just my 0.02 euros
    Jeroen Mulder

    w: www.jeroenmulder.com

  8. #8
    What? Maelstrom's Avatar
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    One last comment: We talk about the "visitors" and "users" as animals. Just an interesting observation....
    Good catch but true. Unfortunately in many ways our guests in the end are out guinee pigs. This might be a rude way to look at it but while we always try to create something new its there feedback that will keep us going .
    Maelstrom Personal - Apparition Visions
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  9. #9
    1-800-JMULDER JMulder's Avatar
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    It's hard to imagine humans when you talk about visitors, you never see them nor talk to them in real life..
    Jeroen Mulder

    w: www.jeroenmulder.com

  10. #10
    What? Maelstrom's Avatar
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    Originally posted by JMulder
    It's hard to imagine humans when you talk about visitors, you never see them nor talk to them in real life..
    Its true...and sometimes while trying to push our technology further we forget that point
    Maelstrom Personal - Apparition Visions
    Development - PhP || Mysql || Zend || Devshed
    Unix - FreeBSD || FreeBsdForums || Man Pages
    They made me a sitepoint Mentor - Feel free to PM me or Email me and I will see if I can help.


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