This is an easily understood Maxim for anyone who’s ever gone online and visited a website. Simply put, don’t make your site so complicated it takes forever for visitors to get to the information or product they’re looking for. Make sure they are never more than three links, or mouse clicks away at any time. The more complicated your site, the greater difficulty you will have. But by designing your website from the beginning this way, it will naturally come together so that it is user-friendly.
It does no good to have the best graphics, the best programming, and the best products if visitors get fed up with having to link again and again just to access the one page they’re looking for. In fact, every link you add (to get to a page) cuts your visitor count, and your success rate. Every page they hit has casualties… they’re dropping like flies, because everyone has a different tolerance for how much baloney they’ll go through to get the information or place the order.
The paradox is, site visitors want to feel in control, anonymous, yet they like having you gently lead them through… you want to guide them through, to the obvious close, but you want to make it a path they “want” to follow, and don’t feel forced through. Think about voice mail… everyone hates it! Really good voicemail can save you loads of time by helping you get right to the information or person you need. Really lousy voicemail tries to force you along its chosen track, whether you want to go or not, and the really, really bad voicemail doesn’t give you an “out” where you can EVER talk to a real human being. Think of navigating your websites like this, and fix the flow!