Information Architecture Design of a Corporate Website

The information architecture website has been designed for consumer baby item’s store named as Little Souls. The website intends to target store’s online audience, providing them all the information needed, along with all details regarding baby items.

Target audience

An important aspect of creating a good website is to understand the target audience and evaluate what type of content will most likely attract the audience (Shaoolian, 2015).

Gender and age: As the store contain baby items for babies ranging from newborn babies to five years old toddlers, so the anticipated audience for the website will be both, males and females, ranging between the ages of 18 years to 60 years.

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Demographics: As it is a baby items’ store’s website, so the target audience includes parents to be, parents, grandparents and of course other relatives of the babies. Website will have detailed guidelines for those who are not very well aware of baby stuff but want to buy something for babies. It will guide parents to be, who are not well aware of what items they are going to need in near future. For example, website will have an option of registration, where parents to be can register themselves simply by providing some basic biography and making an account on website. By doing so, they will be given a list of possible baby items they are going to need. They could include other family members and friends in this particular registry who want to buy them baby gifts. Anyone from their circle could get access to this registered baby items’ list by entering the password they have set. Members will have a convenient option of making changes in their list so they don’t feel stuck, once registered. They can even simply withdraw from registration. They will not be charged any free and there is no registration fee at first hand either.

Socio-economic background: Website will have all the information about upcoming items in store and online, providing the exact expected time duration. For example, if a brand is about to introduce a new model of stroller, the Little Souls’ website will have all details of its design, availability and cost.

Each item on website will have all particulars like cost, availability of item, number of remaining, color selection and return policy.

Website’s vocabulary and terminology will be kept easy so that customers don’t face any trouble in understanding the content.

The socio-economic background of the targeted audience will be middle class to high class. As the store particularly provides baby items for babies aging between newborn to five years old, so it is important to maintain quality. Therefore, costs cannot be very low. It implies that lower middle class might find it a little expensive to shop from Little Souls’ website.

Blueprint Diagram

Textual description of diagram

As shown in blueprint diagram, the layout of website is kept simple to make it easy for customers to use and interact with website.

On homepage, there are all main categories of website which include:

Products: When a user click on products, he will be directed to all products’ main list where he can see all details of items like availability, price, color options etc. After picking an item user will be directed to checkout page.

Register: It is a page for parents to be to register themselves and they will bet all baby items list. Other members can be added to registration.

Store locations: If a customer wants to see store’s products physically, they can get information/address of all our locations by clicking on his option.

About Us: By going on this page users can read who we are and what we do.

Contact us: To contact a sales representative or other store members, customers can consult this page. There will be our contact number, email address and mailing address.

Return policy: This category guides users about returning an item that they purchase online from our website for some malfunction or simply of they don’t like it.

Login: If Website’s users have made an account with us, they can login and see what’s new for members by clicking on this option.

Research: Users can search for different categories of website or items by going on research page.

Registry page blueprint

Registry page gives an opportunity to users to register their items which they want to purchase in near future.

Register

Make account

Login

Items list

Add Items

Home

View your list

Save Registry

Legends: Only one legend is used on this page to keep it simple for users.

Description: When users click on registry page on homepage, they get to this page where they can make

Legends: Only one legend is used on this page to keep it simple for users.

Description: When users click on registration page, they get to this page where they can make their personal store account and make a list of items which they will buy in near future. Users can view their list anytime by getting to this page and logging into their account. They can remove items if they want to.

Checkout page Blueprint

Checkout

Name

E-mail

Phone#

Address

Personal Info

Payment type

Checkout page has simple layout and limited but all the important options and only one legend to keep it convenient for all kinds of users.

Credit card

Debit Card

Review Order

Cancel

Submit

Description: On checkout page, users will be given an option to provide all their personal info which is required for the delivery of item i.e. name, address, phone number, email address. Then they can choose payment type i.e. credit or debit card. After entering all this information, they can push submit button and their request will get into process.

Navigation

Breadcrumbs Navigation: Breadcrumbs Navigation: The website uses breadcrumbs navigation. With this, it will be easier for the user to go back to previous pages and know the exact location of the webpage he or she is visiting within the website. Here are some of the benefits of using breadcrumbs navigation that are kept in mind for Website’s users’ convenience:

  • Users can navigate to higher level categories of website more easily, if breadcrumbs trail for all pages of website is offered.
  • Users will not have to use the browser’s back button again and again, they can use the breadcrumbs with a fewer number of clicks.
  • Breadcrumbs navigation has usually very little to no negative impact in terms of content overload (Kotzé, Marsden, Lindgaard, Wesson, & Winckler, 2013, p. 317)

As the breadcrumbs navigation is more supportive for the websites with a larger number of pages so it is the best navigation style for Little Souls’ website as it contains a large number of baby items and different categories for example registration, return policy, products’ specifications etc.

Organization

Hierarchical organization: Hierarchical organization: To organize the contents of Little Souls’ website, hierarchical organization is used because store’s website has baby items for babies aging between newborn babies to five years old, so it has a number of items to list. To make online shopping easier for new users, it has number of categories like registering items and including other members to the registry so they can also participate in shopping through the same website. With the help of hierarchical organization, it is much easier to organize website’s content and material so it does not look messy or make the user confused and annoyed (Chen & Ahn, 2017, p.13).

Search Strategies

The development and maintenance teams intend to use effective search strategies to attract more traffic on the website. For example, it will pay browsers to get featured at the top of search results for baby items, and will encourage customers to leave reviews about the store. Getting good reviews also helps to get on top of search results. The team will mark low prices on items when they are on sale, because sometimes people search items by low prices.

Wireframes

A website’s wireframe, also known as a pave schematic or screen blueprint is a visual guide that represents the skeletal framework of a website (Brown., 2010). The following wireframes have been designed for Little Souls’ website.

Home page: The homepage is the index of a website. User visits the homepage for the first time entering the URL of website in browser so it must be appealing but simple to follow.

LOGO

Search Box

Home Products Register Store Locations About

 

Us

Contact Us Return Policy Login

Side Bar

Home

Strollers

Cribs

Feeding

Baby Clothes

Bathing Items

Slide Image

Welcome Note

XXXXXXXXXXX
XXXXXXXXXXXX

Products Services

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXx

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Site Navigation Updates Contact Us

Description: On home page, there is company logo on left top corner and on right top corner there is search box where users can search for desired page or product. There is a list of website content. Home pages contains a welcome note for users. There is product’s page on left bottom below the welcome note and on right side there is services page. The middle of the homepage contains a slide image for the website. On the lowest bottom of homepage, there are site navigation, updates and contact us options.

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Product page: Product page has the list of all items that Little Souls offers to customers for shopping. Once a user selects to buy a product, it will direct the user to checkout page.

LOGO

Search Box

Home Products Register Store Locations About

 

Us

Contact Us Return Policy Login

Home/Products

Product Image

Product Image

Product Title Product Title

Product Description Product Description

Buy More Info Buy More Info

Product Image

Product Image

Product Title Product Title

Product Description Product Description

Buy More Info Buy More Info

Site Navigation

 

(Home) (previous page) (Next page)

Updates

 

XXXXXXXXXX

Contact Us

 

XXX

Description: Top of this page contains the same contents as that of homepage, which shows that user can go back to homepage or to any other page without making several back clicks. On this page, all products details are given along with images, title, cost, availability and a brief description. Users can get related detailed information by clicking on the product image. On the lower left end of this page, there is site navigation option which gives an option to go directly to home, previous page or next page. Next page will have the next product.

Navigation (Search) Page: By going on search page audience can use the keyword to search different options of website. For example, if a user needs to look for a specific item, it could be typed in search page and found. Even if users are looking for a particular feature of website, they could simply type and get to it right away.

LOGO

 

Search Box

Home Products Register Store Locations About

 

Us

Contact Us Return Policy Login

Side Bar

Home

Strollers

Cribs

Feeding

Baby Clothes

Bathing Items

Home/Search

Search

Enter your keywords

Search

  • Advanced Search
Site Navigation

 

(Home) (previous page) (Next page)

Updates

 

XXXXXXXXXX

Contact Us

 

XXX

Description: Top of the search page has the same layout as of homepage and products page to keep it simple and convenient for users. Below that, it has search bar where users can type in page or product name and go to the desired option directly without wasting time. In this way, users will not have to go through all products and they can go directly to their desired product by entering the keywords for desired item in search box.

Check-out Page

LOGO

 

Search Box

Home Products Register Store Locations About

 

Us

Contact Us Return Policy Login

Checkout

Enter email

Home address

Phone number

Payment type

Site Navigation

 

(Home) (previous page) (Next page)

Updates

 

XXXXXXXXXX

Contact Us

 

XXX

Description: Like other pages, the top and bottom layout of this page are same to keep it convenient for users. When users click on the checkout option, they will get further options to provide their details like home address, phone number, E-mail address and payment type.

Design a metadata matrix that presents the vocabulary terms and relationships.

According to Morville and Rosenfeld (2006), “The information architect’s job is to help define which vocabularies should be developed, considering priorities, time and budget”. The following metadata matrix represents the vocabulary terms and their brief discussion

Vocabulary Description Example Maintenance
Audience People visiting the site Parents to be, grandparents, other random people Moderate
Page type Type of site pages Home page, products page, checkout page Moderate
Product Product items Baby strollers, cribs, bottles, baby clothes, baby bathing items Easy
About us Further information. About store and its website Who we are, what we do Easy
Contact us Information about contacting store Phone number, email address, location maps, addresses Easy
Register Enter officially for shopping Make an account and add shopping list Difficult
Store An outlet for shopping Where customers physically visit to shop Easy
Site Website, page A source to shop online Easy
Search Find, discover, explore Users can look for desired feature Moderate

Vocabulary: In information science, controlled vocabulary is a carefully selected list of words and phrases, which are used to tag units of information (document or work) so that they may be more easily retrieved through a search (Browne, 2004, p. 94).

To increase search engine accuracy, a list of variant terms is used. Following table reflects this list of variant terms

Accepted terms Variant terms Relationships (respectively)

 

NT = narrower term

BT = broader term

Contact us Email, address, phone NT, NT, BT
Login Sign in, join NT, BT
Register Join, sign up BT, NT
Site Website, page BT, NT
Search Find, discover NT, BT
Layout Arrangement, design NT, BT
Store An outlet for shopping, location for shopping BT, NT
About Information, data NT, BT
Page Sheet, site BT, NT
Organize Formation, Order BT,NT

Justification of Website design

The Little soul’s website is designed to be simple and consistent. As the target audience mainly includes parents to be and grandparents, so it was kept in mind that they do not get distracted by complicated design and layout, ultimately opting to shop somewhere else by getting annoyed. So, the main purpose of website was to make online shopping easier and convenient to avoid any hassle.

Website’s navigation style is kept breadcrumbs because it gives the user an opportunity to go back to the previous page conveniently. It is also helpful to determine the exact location of the webpage on website. User does not have to push the back button on browser again and again to go to homepage or other categories. In breadcrumb’s navigation, users can get to another category by clicking fewer times than in any other navigation method (Kotzé et al., 2013).

Breadcrumbs navigation is particularly good for Little Souls’ website because of the large content. As the website covers almost all baby items for babies aging between newborn to five years old, so it has number of pages, about 12 to 14. That is why it is important that the website design ensures easy navigation to homepage without making several clicks.

Hierarchical organization commensurate with the breadcrumb navigation system. As mentioned earlier, website has a large number of contents so they must be organized well in order to protect user from getting exhausted. If the website’s contents are scattered, things might seem confusing to user and that will portray a negative impression of the business. To avoid any complications, contents are arranged in hierarchical organization. Hierarchical organization looks neat and smooth. The simple layout of website helps users to find what they are looking for within the webpage.

Language of website is kept easy because it targets a large group of audience aging between 18 to 60 years old people i.e. parents to be, parts, grandparents and other people, so that those who are not very well aware of web use, they should not get confused with complicated language and terminologies. Another reason to keep the website vocabulary simple is that some parents to be are not well aware of all baby items, so if they are using a website for shopping for the first time, they should get to desired products conveniently without getting stuck into complicated language. Therefore, the vocabulary and other terminologies used in website are kept very simple.

The website’s content is tested by the development team and a small group of users, who found it very convenient to use the website. They analysed that the layout of website i.e. breadcrumbs navigation and hierarchical organization fully support users in finding their desired products with ease and users do not have to consume much time in browsing the pages of website .
Information system insecurity

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References:

Brown, D. M. (2010). Communicating design: Developing web site documentation for design and planning (2 edition). Berkeley, CA: New Riders.

Browne, G. (2004). Website Indexing: Enhancing Access to Information Within Websites. Website Indexing.

Chen, Y.-C., & Ahn, M. J. (2017). Routledge Handbook on Information Technology in Government. Taylor & Francis.

Kotzé, P., Marsden, G., Lindgaard, G., Wesson, J., & Winckler, M. (2013). Human-Computer Interaction — Interact 2013: 14th IFIP TC 13 International Conference, Cape Town, South Africa, September 2-6, 2013, Proceedings. Springer.

Morville, P., and Rosenfeld, L. (2007). Information architecture for the World Wide Web, Third Edition. Sebastopol, United States of America: O’Reilly Media, Inc.

Shaoolian, G. (2015, December 15). The Value of a Website Strategy. The Huffington Post. Retrieved August 27, 2017, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gabriel-shaoolian/the-value-of-a-website-strategy_b_8807554.html

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