Information Architecture Bottom Up



July 22, 2015 - 2:00 PM


July 22, 2015 - 3:00 PM


9401 Lee Highway, Suite 300, Fairfax, VA 22030   View map

The homepage is dead. Newspapers such as the New York Times, as well as many marketers are having to rework their Web strategies because no one visits the homepage anymore. Same goes for the TOC. People arrive at your content by doing a search or following a link. They land directly on the particular page of interest to them, often without even thinking about what site it is on. If they remain in your content after that page, they navigate it from that page, from the bottom up. The same is true even if your help system is not on the Web.

Yet most websites and help systems are still designed from the top down. Even though we ourselves generally navigate content bottom-up, we still create content using the top down principles of organization that we inherited from a civilization built on paper. We try very hard to create a top-down architecture that is easy to use, but the effort is fruitless because our readers are trying to navigate it bottom-up. The result is frustration for readers and frustration for writers.

This webinar will trace the evolution of our information architectures, showing that the move to a more bottom-up approach did not begin with the Web and is a response to the complexities of organizing large volumes of content, not simply a response to Google. Attendees will learn:

  • Why readers are moving increasingly to a bottom-up approach to content, and why they are not going back.
  • When top-down approaches still work, why, and how to tell when top-down is still appropriate.
  • What a bottom-up architecture looks like and how to think about organizing content to work bottom-up.




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