Card sorting creates products that are easy to use and intuitive to navigate.
Card sorting is a research technique that informs the design of navigation structures. The technique involves participants organising content into groups that are intuitive to them. It also allows us to understand how people think about, and make sense of content.
Card sorting is an evidence based method for informing navigation & content structure
During a card sort, participants use a cross section of content from a website or product to create groups. Each card representes a piece of content and contains a desccripive label. Ideally cards sorts are completed by a group of participants who are representative of a selected product audience.
After the cards have been grouped, participants give each group a label (or heading) that makes sense to them.
- An understanding of which pieces of content belong together.
- The type of language that people naturally use when referring to these groups.
For content heavy products or websites more than one sort may be needed to provide sufficient information and refine results.
A card sort can also be carried out using an online tool such as Optimal Workshop. This allows participants to complete the activity in their own time and space. It also provides efficient data collection, potentially saving time on the project.
A final validation of the structure determined by the card sort is recommended. This can be done via tree testing with participants.