While architecture blueprints are excellent tools for capturing an approach to information organization in a detailed and structured way, they do not tend to excite people. As an architect who wants to convince your colleagues of the wisdom of your approach, you need to help them envision the site as you see it in your mind's eye. Scenarios are great tools for helping people to understand how the user will navigate and experience the site you design. They will also help you think through the experience your site will provide and may generate new ideas for the architecture and navigation system.
To provide a multidimensional experience that shows the true potential for the site, it is best to write a few scenarios that show how people with different needs and behaviors would navigate your site. Before beginning the scenario, you should think about the primary intended audiences. Who are the people that will use your site? Why and how will they want to use it? Will they be in a rush or will they want to explore? Try to select three or four major user types who will use the site in very different ways. Create a character who represents each type. Give them a name, a profession, and a reason for visiting your site, as demonstrated in the sidebar. Then, begin to flesh out a sample session in which that person uses your site. Try to highlight the best features of the site through your scenario. If you've designed for a new customization feature, show how someone would use it.
This is a great opportunity to be creative. You'll probably find these scenarios to be easy and fun to write. Hopefully, they'll help convince your colleagues to invest in your ideas.
This simple scenario shows why and how users may employ both searching and browsing within the web site. More complex scenarios can be used to flesh out the possible needs of users from multiple audiences.
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