What is the 3 Click Rule?

The first published mention of the 3 Click Rule came from Jeffrey Zeldman’s 2001 book, Taking Your Talent to the Web. In it he brings up an already popular rule with the web designer community: the 3-click rule.

Are Mega Menus Bad or Good?

So while this alone (and menus in general) could be a topic for a podcast the guys touch on the good and (mostly) bad of Mega Menus and how they fit into UX/UI, navigation and the 3 Click Rule.

What about if your Mega Menu requires 2-3 clicks to navigate just a menu and the user still ends up on the wrong page does that really count as a good experience? Sure the user got “somewhere” in 2-3 clicks but what if it took more? What if it isn’t the correct page? What if they are on mobile and had to scroll and do additional clicks?

Test your site on your phone. Stop reading. Stop listening. Test your own menu or your clients’ site and just try and find X on the site using the menus and mega menus.

– Dave Rohrer

SEO & Clicks From Homepage

In an article from SEJ in 2018 the topic of click depth, URL structure and SEO were covered in a Google Webmaster Hangout.

So it’s more a matter of how many links you have to click through to actually get to that content rather than what the URL structure itself looks like.

– John Mueller

Are flat sites better for SEO?

Short answer is… NO! Listen and you can hear a deeper explanation on why flat sites should be avoided.

Tips for Decreasing Click Depth

There are many more ways to decrease click depth for a page(s) but here are some that we cover:

  • Breadcrumbs
  • HTML Sitemap
  • Proper Pagination (see Portent article in resources for more here)
  • Better Internal Links
  • Crawl Your Site and Check Click Depth

Tools for Testing Click Depth & UI/UX

Site Navigation Resources

E124 – Breaking Down the 3 Click Rule, Flat Sites & Site Navigation Hosts:



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