To ensure users can find the information they need, your website's structure must be easily understood and sustainable.

Before creating a new website or rebuilding an old one, you'll need to map out how the pages on your site will be organised. This map of your site's structure is called the site's information architecture (IA).

To create an effective IA, you'll first need to audit any existing content and determine what new content needs to be created. Once you've finished your audit, you can build your IA and draft your content.

If you're working with ITS to build your website, we'll guide you through this process. 

Auditing existing content

Before auditing your existing content, ensure you've identified your website's purpose and target audience. Use this information to guide your decision-making during your audit.

To audit your content, you'll need to work through a spreadsheet of the current pages on your site to identify: 

  • if the content needs to be kept or deleted
  • the subject matter expert (SME) for that content
  • the audience for the content.

Having this information will help you identify your current content layout, find any information gaps that need to be filled and help you determine how to structure your content.

If you're working with ITS to build your website, we'll provide you with a spreadsheet to work through to audit your existing content. 

If you're creating a new site without any existing content, instead of completing an audit, you'll just need to identify what pages need to created. 

Building your information architecture

Your website's information architecture (IA) should list each page you intend to create on your site and where it will sit within the structure of the site.

To ensure your IA is effective, you'll need to build your website structure based on user research. Understanding how users navigate information is key to creating a usable website.

ITS can help you create a draft IA based on research and best practices. Your draft IA should then be tested using interviews with your target audience and testing tools, such as Treejack.

Drafting your content

Once you've created your IA, your content can be drafted.

If you're working with the ITS Digital Content team, your content will be drafted by Digital Content Producers. The team will work with you during the drafting and approval process to ensure the content meets your goals and your users' needs.

If you're creating your own content, follow our advice on writing for the web and web accessibility standards. If you need further advice, submit an IT request.

Once your content is drafted and approved, you can begin building your website.