Card sorting is a method used to help design or evaluate the information architecture of a site. In a card sorting session, participants organize topics into categories that make sense to them and they may also help you label these groups.

  • Used to explore how participants group items into categories and relate concepts to one another, whether for digital interface design or a table of contents.
  • It can be used to identify terminology that is vague, misunderstood, or has multiple meanings associated with it.
  • Card sorting can also be used to generate options for structuring information, identifying different schemas for organizing navigation, menus, and taxonomies.
  • It validates that the categories in your product or service actually reflect the mental model of your audience.
  • Including blank cards and markers allows participants to add their own items where needed.
  • If no consistent patterns emerge after several card sorts, consider renaming the cards or reconsider the categories.

More Readings,

Scenarios describe the stories and context behind why a specific user or user group comes to your site.  They note the goals and questions to be achieved and sometimes define the possibilities of how the user(s) can achieve them on the site. A ...

A framework for structuring field observations This can be used to guide any ethnographic or observational method, corresponding to five interrelated elements: Activities are goal-directed sets of actions or the pathways that people take towa...

Elements that move in the same direction are perceived to be more related than elements that move in different directions or are stationary. Perceptual organization of movement. In perception: Gestalt principles. One Gestalt principle, that of commo...

Value Opportunity Analysis (VOA) is an approach to identifying the aspirational attributes in a product or service, listing a set of value opportunities to help design teams focus on the key items to connect the target audience. Mapping the ...

A tendency to find a product desirable because it has a high price. Every student of economics learns that the price and demand of commodities are inversely related, a relationship known as the law of demand. The law of demand predicts that given tw...

Contextual design (CD) is a user-centered design process developed by Hugh Beyer and Karen Holtzblatt. It incorporates ethnographic methods for gathering data relevant to the product via field studies, rationalizing workflows, and designing human-co...