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Myth 006 – The 3 Click Rule

Posted on 6th August 2009 in Insight
Written by: Andy Wickes

All content should be no more than 3 clicks away..

What is it with myths on the website and the number 3? 3 second rules. 3 clicks away?

Three kinds of nonsense.

Another of those handy expressions thrown up in a planning meeting when putting together a site map I think. This particular myth simply has no place in web design these days, not least because it does not correlate with the type of content currently online, nor the volume.

Much of the content on the web nowadays (technical information, technical support, ebay, mortgage applications) allows us to tailor results via information we input. This can clearly not take place within three clicks. The amount of choice on Amazon or on Dell’s site for example provide more options that can be explained away in three clicks. The average website with search requires two clicks often to find the page needed to complete any given task, let alone, anything else. Imagine the amount of navigation options we’d have to build into an e-commerce site to allow for any item to be found in three clicks from the homepage?!

So for this myth we revert to the sentiment of the myth, rather than the detail itself. Make it as easy as possible for your audience to find your content, and vitally, provide content they would wish to find.