Taylor Community Library: IA & Site Redesign

Project components: Information Architecture, User Research, Usability Testing, Wireframing

Tools: Airtable, Optimal Workshop Treejack, Balsamiq

Background

Taylor Community Library (TCL) wanted a website refresh that would improve their site's navigability and enhance discoverability. Their existing site, which is hosted as a subpage of Taylor, MI city government website, needed a new site navigation to be developed that would make it easier for users to move between different site elements and easily locate relevant information. (I completed this project as part of my Information Architecture course at Kent State University.)

Approach

The project was divided into four phases: research, analysis, testing, and design. I conducted initial user interviews with library patrons and a literature review of studies and reports around usability testing of library websites. Using the analysis from this initial research, I created personas and a task priority table for the user types likely to engage with TCL’s site.

Following this phase, I conducted a content audit of TCL's site and ​developed a sitemap consisting of a new navigation scheme, a labeling system, and updated taxonomy. I then designed an online usability test to validate the new taxonomy with participants, and revised the sitemap based on my findings.

Results

Based on the findings from the usability tests, I designed final site navigation that would support multiple entry points for important user tasks. The navigation was broken up into three sections: a global header, global (main) navigation bar, and a global footer. I built redundant access points in the navigation for users who want to access the same page or content from a different area in the navigation.

Finally, I developed lo-fidelity wireframes of the new site to illustrate what user flows look like with updated navigation. (The below wireframes demonstrate the "using the catalog" flow.)