Use Mega Menus (Not Drop-Down Menus)
A mega menu appears in a broad area and shows up to two (2) levels of the menu. Mega menus are recommended to enhance a user's ability to navigate the site.
- Reasoning: Mega menus that show everything at once are easier to navigate than the typical "tree and branch" structure of drop-down menus. For bigger sites with many features, regular drop-down menus typically hide most of the user's options.
It is recommended that all navigation items use mega menus or only one navigation does, the most common being How Do I.
- Reasoning: This provides consistency or expected uniqueness in the navigation. If the mega menus appear random a user may get confused on how the site is supposed to behave.
Use Two-Tiered Mega Menus to Show Relationships
Two-tier mega menus let you emphasize relationships among items. Use categories to house similar information within the first and second tiers of a mega menu. For example, under a How Do I global navigation, Notifications and Recreation Activities & Programs fit into a group that is called Sign Up For.
- Reasoning: Two-tier mega menus allow the user to see deeper into the navigation. Categorizing and placing all pages related to each other within the same section under a global navigation item helps users understand their choices.
- Note: If you have a smaller site, use a one-tier mega menu and include links with obvious destinations, such as Adopt a Pet or Pay My Utility Bill.