Card Sorting

Card sorting is a UX research method in which study participants group individual labels written on notecards according to criteria that make sense to them.  This method uncovers how the target audience’s domain knowledge is structured, and it serves to create an information architecture that matches users’ expectations.

Part of making a site easy to use is organizing information so that people find what they’re looking for. Too often, content is structured based on what makes sense to the company, not the users. One primary way to figure out an organizational scheme that best matches users’ mental models is through card sorting.

Card sorting is a beneficial technique in information architecture. It helps you understand how users think about your content. It can help you organize content to suit your users’ mental models rather than your company’s point of view. Card sorting can be supplemented with other information-architecture methods to identify issues in your category structure.