There are several types of web design approaches around the concept of web navigation. Generally, they can be roughly group in 5 distinct categories. Here are as follows:
1. Designer Philosophy – Fact is, designers are very creative and let their creativity work in a subjective way. A website is built from a personal view of the world and of the designer. The designer philosophy approach can be found in art in some degree. Generally, the end-result can be admired or hated by others. This design is basically driven by personal interest and business goals are sometimes overlooked. For websites that deals with large amount of contents or complexity, this could be difficult. Most of the time they end up failing.
2. Enterprise Design – The enterprise design is one of the most common type of design that can be found around the net. When you employ this approach, you will notice that the website is designed around two main ideas and these are: the need to please the boss and the need to involve everybody in your company. Because of this, it could increase the efficiency for website updates because each department is responsible of its own part of the website. Unfortunately, website users end up getting lost, confused and they get out of the site faster than they got in.
3. Content-centered-Just like the enterprise design, this approach also has a problem and this is the content. A content-centered site has contents that are grouped in several ways. In the end, nothing can be found. Keep in mind that, when making a website, the type of content available must not be the only way to determine navigation priorities.
4. A technology-driven design – This is the most frequently-used design. It is driven by a goal to lower cost. The main focus of this design is to implement and reach a final product quickly. Its navigation system is driven by the easiest way to implement a solution.
These pre-made solutions are made available at a relatively low price, free even. They are designed to fit the general needs of the visitors. And this usually means badly serving a particular need.
When we talk about final result, it is usually hard to use or understand. In the long term, this is not cost-effective because whatever savings one obtains in the development process are offset by the opportunities that are lost once the site is live.
5. User Experience-driven design
This is sometimes called UXP or UCD. UCD stands for user-centered design. This is widely recommended because it places the users at the center. It takes into consideration the experience of users. As the number of companies that realize that potential of this design increase, the more popular this design becomes. An example for this is Squidoo.