Links Among Multiple Pages

Now that we know how to link from one page to another, let’s discuss how to do these links effectively. Presume you have a website that has an index and three topic pages. The document tree at the right shows one possible way to link these pages together. If you click the picture, you’ll go to an index page that shows this document tree in action.

Index with links to and from three sub-pages

While this linkage does work, it’s not very convenient. In order to get from one page to another, you have to go back to the index.

Let’s improve the situation by putting in links to go forward and back among all the pages, as you see in the diagram at the right. Click the picture to see these pages in action.

Sub-pages have forward/backward links

This is a definite improvement in navigation. For a simple area of a site with only three pages, these additional links are adequate. You’ll also notice that the visual layout of the added links is not very pleasing.

The ideal, however, would be the ability to go from any page to any other page with a single click, as shown in the diagram at the right. Click the diagram to see the “best” version.

Notice how smooth the navigation among the pages is, and how all the links have been put into a very small space. This may seem difficult to do, but it’s actually quite easy, as you will see on the next page.

Index with links among all sub-pages

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