Information Architecture is the art and science of organizing websites and software to support find-ability and usability. IA is not usability in itself though it overlaps usability.
Information Architecture on it’s own can increase the propensity for success. It is, in some organizations, misunderstood and not effectively implemented. Below is a graph I created to define what IA is according to me.
There are 3 aspects that make up a good Information Architecture according to Simon.
- Business Strategy, understanding the business value.
- The User, you understand your user.
- Technology, you know technology and it’s limitations.
Would you build a house before drawing up blueprints? No. So why spend thousands on a website without drawing up blueprints? Information Architecture is critical to those that want a return on their web investment. Web Design tends to be a misnomer in that companies don’t take IA or usability as a part of there web project. IA is a critical part of your web project.