When onboarding a new client for a blog design I always send over a design questionnaire and one of the questions is:
Do you want a utility navigation? If so, what should be in the menu?
Well, 5 out of 10 times my clients write back something like “I have no idea what this is!” or “I think so but I don’t know what a utility navigation is.”
I’m going to explain what a utility navigation is and why you might want one for your site.
What is a utility navigation?
In short, a utility navigation is simply a mini-navigation at the top of your site.
What goes in a utility navigation?
Generally you put links to pages that do not change very often in your utility navigation. Pages like About, FAQs, Contact or Login are typically found in a utility navigation.
Where does a utility navigation go?
Depending on the design of your site, the utility menu should go above your main navigation. It’s also commonly found in the top right corner.
Why might I want a utility navigation?
If your main navigation has a lot of links, adding a utility nav is a great way to declutter. It also helps to prioritize links. The main navigation is typically where you want your visitors to look first, while the utility nav is secondary.
Why might I not want a utility navigation?
Depending on the structure and content of your site, a utility nav might not be necessary. More sites are leaning towards minimalism and a clean navigation, so a utility navigation might not always be a good option.
Examples of utility navigation: