Information architecture is about to figure out the best way to organise your design. It is about organising the element into hierarchies of information.
To do great IA work you have to do a research (see User Research section of this wiki). Most of the time the Information Architecture's role will become a joint role with other design and/or content related roles.
Understanding the hierarchy between different types of content is essential for creating great wireframes (and later prototypes and products).
How does a good information architecture looks like in an application?
- User can find the page he is looking for
- User can find the information where they think it should be
- The website layout straightforward
- Filling forms are easy
- What information should we have on the site (content)
- How these information should be placed across pages (sitemap)
- How the information should be presented on a page (layout)
- How the information should be presented on a UI element (form)
Sitemaps are good for websites to overview how the page hierarchy looks like. The more complex your site is the more harder to provide a straightforward sitemap. Sitemap is mostly good for designers to see how they laid out the content and to see if it makes sense. In order to provide a logical and straightforward sitemap you need to understand and overview all the different content types on your website.
This is a research technique which is great to support Information Architecture decisions, because it allows us to understand how users group information. Based on this we can present elements which belongs to each other.
Dividing information to consumable pieces
Don't provide too many options for your users as they can be distracting. This applies to navigation, pricing or almost anything. Your goal should be to always provide consumable pieces of information for your users.