Toggling the Menu Bar?

From what I have read, experts recommend that you remove any and all “distractions” on the checkout page of an ecommerce site to ensure customers complete the transaction. (This would mostly include removing the menu bar.)

I am wondering if this makes sense for other parts of my website?

For example, I have a “My Account” page where users can adjust their profile and account settings. On one hand, there isn’t much need for a menu bar there since the user should be focused on the task at hand. And on the other hand, if the user clicked on something in the menu bar, it wouldn’t be the end of the world since it doesn’t jeoparadize a sale like on the checkout page.

Another example is the “My Purchases” page where the user can see anything he/she has bought (e.g. subscriptions, digital books, downloads, etc). Here, removing the menu bar might make things look less cluttered, but as above, I can see it either way.

What do you think?

Hi @UpstateLeafPeeper, if you remove the menu bar, how is the user supposed to navigate the site?
I think removing distractions is fine, but going as far as removing basic functionality is IMHO going a bit too far. What if the user, once having landed in the checkout page, decides they want to purchase something else? Can they still easily navigate the site or are they locked in the checkout page?


That is the point! You don’t want a user navigating your site when they are ready to click “Process order”. (It is implied that I would have my company logo that if they clicked on that they would end up on the home page, but other than that, I don’t people doing anything other than entering credit card details and clicking “Process Order” when they are on the checkout page!!)

Likewise, if someone is in their “User Preferences” section or maybe their “My Purchases” section, they probably don’t need/want to navigate to an article, right?

So I just figured that applying the same logic as the experts recommend on the checkout page might also do some good on a few select other pages on my site.

They click on the “Edit Choices” button at the top of the checkout page in the shopping cart section…

In this situation the I believe you are making assumptions for the user while damaging user experience.

I’m not sure but in my opinion this might just as well annoy users and drive them away from your site…


So we have a vote for keeping the menu bar in all instances - except maybe on the checkout page?

What do the rest of you think?

(It’s always so deathly quiet in this form…)

I think the question has to be made in relation to your very particular website, but so far we have no information about it. Maybe posting some screenshots or describing your particular checkout flow would help in driving the conversation. I think the case for removing the menu bar should only be done where the checkout consists of a multi page form, since once they have started the checkout you want them to complete it and not navigate away. However I don’t think this should be applied to the checkout landing page, which probably contains an overview of the shopping bag. Maybe I wanted to go there to review something before going ahead and buying something else… making inconsistent experience throughout different pages in your site can be a frustrating thing and I consider it ill advised going in that direction. Just my personal opinion…

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