Is the global navigation labeled correctly?


Ensure that user can differentiate between elements of the global navigation and find the page or item they are looking for.

Why this matters

Ambiguous text labels, labels that are used for multiple elements of global navigation, or unclear iconography hurt all of our users. Those problems are magnified significantly when the user has a cognitive or neurological disability or is using assistive technology (AT).

How to implement


  1. Ensure that text labels are unique for each local navigation element. Don’t name two things “Overview” even if they’re in separate sections of the local navigation. Make them more specific, like “Overview of Trees” vs “Overview of Shrubs”.
  2. Ensure that text labels are unambiguous. For example, the word “Profile” on Wikipedia leads to a long list of potential Profile meanings, including a monitor’s color profile, a user’s personal profile, and a type of photograph. If you’re building a site for a photography studio, you definitely want to make sure the user understands the difference between “here’s where we keep profile-style photos” and “here is your user profile’.
  3. Ensure any icons used in the global navigation are accompanied by a text description. See Image alt text and SVG titles for more information on writing text descriptions.


Ensure you implement the labels as provided.

How to test

Usability testing

Perform usability testing and accessibility testing as early in the design or implementation phases as possible to ensure that users understand the global navigation terminology.

Manual testing

  1. Ensure that all elements of the masthead contain the text specified by the Writer.
  2. Ensure that all icons in the masthead are accompanied by a text description.