# Visual hierarchy helps scanning

Websites should be designed for scanning. Visual hierarchy helps users scan a web page by visualising how the web elements are being organised. Imaging how hard would it be to scan a book without chapters, headings, or any font weight difference, where all the text look the same.

These are the traits of visual hierarchy that can be optimised for scanning:

  • Prominence. The more important an information is, the more prominent the element should look. This can be done, for example, by enlarging a text.
  • Grouping. Web elements that are logically interrelated to each other must be grouped visually.
  • Nesting. Child information should be visually contained together in a parent container. Example: products being sold in a e-commerce should have their product name, description, and price visually together.

# References

Krug, Don’t make me think (p. 35).

There's nothing new about visual hierarchies. Every newspaper page, for instance, use prominence, grouping, and nesting to give us useful information about the contents of the page before we read a word.