Naming Menu Items

On our websites, we put a good deal of effort into naming our web pages and menu items. Let's first identify several components:

The complete URL is the domain name, plus all URL segments needed to uniquely identify this page. The URL for the page you are on, for example, is:

Notice there are exactly 3 url segments, meaning it is a third-level page.

The link name is Naming. This is what appears in either the vertical or the horizontal menu.

The title is Naming Menu Items - JWebs, and it should appear if you mouse over the link name, or in the title bar on many browsers.

Choosing a URL segment

It should be meaningful, and short. Always remember that someone might be trying to type the URL into their smart phone.

Choosing a link name

This should also be meaningful, but short. There is only so much space before it will spill over to the next line, and then your menu will be much more confusing to visitors. And just because the link name fits on the line in your browser, doesn't mean that your visitor is using the same size font you are. They may have vision problems, and their browser may be set up for a minimum font size.

We have included a page below with an intentionally over-long link name.

Choosing a title

This can be longer, to better explain the page. It also has some value in Search Engine Optimization, but that's another topic.

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