In essence, UX information architecture involves the creation of flow charts, which are iterated to perfect usability. IA is the important aspect of product design involving the mapping of what the user sees as they utilize the tool. I mostly focus on digital products, using my computer science background to structure digital content for an object oriented paradigm. Developer hand-offs are much easier when both teams have an easy way to visualize the structure of a proposed design.
Tools I Use
While I tend to stick to paper for my preliminary information architecture maps; it’s best to formalize the plans with a vector design program, such as Affinity Designer. I’ve also found success with the prototyping tool Figma, various online chart makers, and even the Google Office Suite.
The Usefulness of The Exercise
To make the maps effective, it is important to define the goals of the company and the target users, while considering any market constrains. The designer should be intimately familiar with the content that will be displayed, as well as have an understanding of how it will be perceived. There are many design ‘laws’ that convey ideas on cognitive perception, but I will leave you with the Hicks-Hyman Law.
“The more choices a person is presented with, the longer their decision will take.”
As always, thank you for reading and have a great day!