Card Sorting

Card Sorting

Understanding the Mindset of the Target Group

While classic approaches classify web content into a sitemap based on past experience, card sorting directly integrates the user. User-central developed menus and navigation structures form the foundation for very good website usability. Card sorting has been shown to significantly increase the effectiveness, efficiency and user satisfaction of your website.

What card sorting used to look like…

Online Card Sorting with Representative Samples

A quantitative sample of users (~100) sorts your website’s content and functions with a special online tool as they see fit. (Try it yourself). We use cluster analysis to determine an ideal grouping on the basis of all user data. With this summary of individual user perceptions, an optimal approximation of the target group is created for the site structure. A mental model of the target group about the relationship of the content can then be identified and described. Any website which builds upon this will minimize the user’s overall search effort.

…and how it looks today

This quantitative approach is superior to traditional card sorting on the table because

  • the target group is reliably mapped out (fewer sampling errors)
  • opinion-leader effects and other distortion effects are excluded. (each participant sorts individually on their own computer)
  • Results are gathered with reliable mathematic methods (cluster analysis) and not simply by appearance.

The challenge with card sorting is recognizing and interpreting the underlying logic (the mental model) behind the results. Our user experience specialists have the necessary experience with card sorting in a variety of branches.

We have been able to prove the effectiveness of this method in our own Studiestudy (“Improvement in effectiveness, efficiency and user satisfaction with online card sorting”).

The results can be presented as a mindmap. Also, so-called cross-affinities (Crosslinks) are identified.

Understanding the mindset of the target group

In a workshop with all project members (product manager, website manager, user experience specialists, information architects/conceptual designers), we discuss the established structure and develop solutions for your requests. At this point, the company’s perspective is added to that of the users. The aim is to find a shared understanding of the underlying thinking behind the users’ sorting which can then be added into future content and features.

The results of a card sorting project with Facit Digital:

  • Interpretation of the mental model of the target group(s)
  • Recommendation for an optimal navigation structure (main navigation, content navigation, tag navigation etc.)
  • Comprehensive sitemap/mindmap with all assigned content and feature elements
  • Cross affinity matrix (Relationship of each element to the others for Crosslinks)
  • Recommendations for the nomenclature (wording) of main groups

Reference projects

Contact us

Michael Wörmann

Michael Wörmann

Managing Partner

+49 89 740 420 5560