A well thought-out site structure is the foundation of your website's success. Before you start creating pages on your website, plan out its structure.
Step 1: Plan Your Hierarchy
Your website’s “hierarchy” is simply the way its information is organized. The hierarchy is the basis for the menu and URL structure.
Here is an example of a website hierarchy:
Think about a filing cabinet
Paperwork is much easier to find when it is assigned a clearly labeled folder. The same rule applies to organizing the webpages within a website. Humans prefer simple, logical organization, and so do search engines.
Tips to help plan your hierarchy
- Keep it simple and logical: Each main category should be unique and distinct. Each subcategory should somehow relate to the main category under which it is located.
- Limit the number of main categories to seven: Too many categories equals clutter and confusion.
- It doesn’t have to be fancy: It’s perfectly acceptable to sketch out your website hierarchy by hand on a piece of paper—or even a napkin, for that matter.
Step 2: Create a Menu Structure
Sample Menu Templates
Step 3: Create a URL structure
The third element in developing strong site structure is your URL structure. Your URL structure will be organized according to your site hierarchy.
If we use the website hierarchy above, the URL structure would be:
- Mywebsite.gatech.edu/add-content/pages/horizontal, etc.
Additionally, your URLs should be human-readable, which will make your site visitors and search-engines happy.