There are numerous articles on the web on whether we still need the “home button” in our navigation menus or not. In reading some of the articles, I noticed that if the article was from a design firm, there was no home button. Looking at some of my fellow designer sites, all have a home button.
In developing the Terralsole website, I was working with the winery’s American marketing representative. When I first showed her the website I had designed, our conversation went like this,
“Where’s the home button? Once I leave the homepage I can’t get back to it.”
“You don’t need a home button everyone knows to get back to the homepage you just have to click on the logo.”
“Well I didn’t know that and neither did the client.”
I have to admit her answer took me by surprise. So, I decided I needed to do some research. I also had to consider that perhaps I might be wrong in my thinking. Thank goodness I have no problem admitting when I’m wrong.
The most scientific study I could come up with was I asked about twenty-five people, this question:
“Do you know how to get back to someone’s home page if there is no home button”
Overwhelmingly, no not overwhelmingly, 100% of my study group had no idea how to get back to the home page without a home button. Computer knowledge and experience in my study group ranged from, someone who checks their email, banking statements and look for recipes. To someone who is on the internet probably four hours a day looking for everything and anything.
The response that surprised me the most was from my good friend Lucy at Cando-Computer Services. One of her claims to fame in the computer world is, “She was selected to spearhead some of the first computer laboratories to pervade Chicago Public Schools in the mid-1970s.” And, she was an owner of the first Apple Computer. So when she said no, I knew I had to admit defeat.
While personally, I still think it’s redundant, I have to admit that I was wrong. It is apparent we still do need the home button. At times, I have to remember that when it comes to the computer and/or internet, I look at things differently than the average user. After all, I’ve been using some form of the function keys since I saved my work to 8” x 8” floppy discs used on the IBM Office System 6.
Oh, and over the last couple of days, I’ve been adding the home button back to several websites I’ve designed.