[wp-trac] [WordPress Trac] #47012: Proposal: Simplify WordPress Admin Navigation

WordPress Trac noreply at wordpress.org
Mon Apr 22 15:40:53 UTC 2019

#47012: Proposal: Simplify WordPress Admin Navigation
 Reporter:  lessbloat    |      Owner:  (none)
     Type:  enhancement  |     Status:  new
 Priority:  normal       |  Milestone:  Awaiting Review
Component:  General      |    Version:
 Severity:  normal       |   Keywords:  needs-design needs-design-feedback
  Focuses:  ui           |  dev-feedback
 About 3 months ago
 joen shared some rough mockups] in Slack for proposed changes to the left
 sidebar navigation in core.

 My goal below (with Joen’s blessing) is to resurface those mockups a
 little more publicly to see if we can gather some more feedback and
 potentially gain a little more momentum with this project.

 === Summary

 The current sidebar has served us well for a long time. But with a few
 improvements, we can improve accessibility and usability, and allow it to
 better scale to extensions.

 === Challenges with the current design

 * The hover/flyout menus are difficult to make accessible, and they do not
 scale well to mobile interfaces.
 * There are a lot of top-level menu items that are rarely if ever used,
 contributing to cognitive weight by still being permanently visible.
 * Given the additional menu items that plugin add, people are likely to
 end up with many menu items, despite a large number of them perhaps not
 being used that often.

 === Mockup

 **Important disclaimer:** this is just an initial concept, it is subject
 to feedback and discussion and iterations:


 Props to joen for coming up with this v1 concept.

 === Major Changes

 * Flyout menus are replaced with accordion behavior. This scales all the
 way from mobile to desktop, and affords better accessibility.
 * Menu is made 80px wider (240px vs. 160), affording a 14px minimum font
 size for all items, perhaps bigger icons in the future, more relaxed
 spacing, enhancing usability and accessibility.
 * Sidebar is grouped in major sections, “Site”, “Design”, “Tools” and
 * “Updates” are moved to a subsection of “Manage”, making Home a single
 * Items related to content on your site (such as “Posts” and “Pages”) are
 moved under “Site”.
 * Clicking major menu items just opens or closes the accordion, as opposed
 to go directly to the first subsection. This unifies the mobile and
 desktop behavior. You can keep the accordion open if you use it all the
 time (each click will save state, so you’ll see the same open/closed
 sections upon page refresh).
 * All “Settings” subsections are moved under “Manage”, along with “Plugins
 & Blocks” and “Users”.
 * Separators group major categories, like “Site” and “Design” together
 * Dashboard is renamed “Home”, because all of WordPress is a Dashboard,
 and “Home” is where you can get an overview at a glance.

 === Custom Post Types & Taxonomies

 * Custom Post Types show up below Pages (top item) and Posts (2nd item).
 * A separator cordons these off from Media & Comments, which show content
 from all.
 * Categories & Tags, and even custom taxonomies, are accessible from each
 section, as opposed to having a permanent presence in the sidebar. For
 example if you have a taxonomy called “Ingredients” tied to “Recipes”, you
 first click “Recipes”, and on the archive page you can manage existing
 Ingredients under a tab. The argument for putting them under this page is
 that taxonomies are usually added in the editor itself, and only managed
 on the archive pages.
 * When you have custom post types, an additional, short, separator shows
 up below the post types.

 === Where's the "Add New" menu item?

 One idea would be to make this permanently visible in the top toolbar.


 Clicking this button produces a dropdown. By moving it there, you have a
 single destination to create new content, and we reduce the amount of tab-
 stops in the navigation menu, especially for sites with a lot of custom
 post types.

 === Related

 Helen opened [https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/32678 this ticket]
 over 4 years ago. There are a number of different ideas and threads in
 that ticket. If someone decides that these two tickets should be merged,
 that is fine.

 === Feedback

 Please keep in mind that this is just a ''very early, exploratory
 concept''. Nothing here is set in stone. The goal of this exercise would
 be to improve the overall usability and accessibility of the left nav.

 What thoughts, concerns, questions, and feedback do you have?

Ticket URL: <https://core.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/47012>
WordPress Trac <https://core.trac.wordpress.org/>
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