The Pathfinder or The Search Generation

You can, on a very high level, divide the users who visit corporate public websites into two categories. The first category would be The Pathfinders. Typical for this category is that they try to find a logic structure on the websites in order to find the information they are looking for. They never use the search field on the website.

The other category could be named The Search Generation. They are not so impressed by the website navigation and structure. They normally go direct to the search field and type their query, instead of trying to find it by using the website navigation. The challenges for the corporate websites are to satisfy both these categories.

I am impressed by Volkswagen, who has taken the requirements from category two very serious and placed a search field very centrally on the first page, please visit;

One thought on “The Pathfinder or The Search Generation

  1. When do users use search?
    Whether users use search or not does have to do with so much more than if you’re part of the search generation.
    The design of the website is also important and has consequences for what type of actions the users take.

    How is search positioned?
    Can the users easily see that posibilty for action?
    And off course, even if you wouldn’t normally use the search, when complexity of websites increase or when navigation simply sucks, you would use search anyway.

    But, by designing your website like Volkswagen, you not only have search as something to fall back on when all else fail; they invite the user to use search, to find things they didn’t even know they were looking for…

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