I am facing problem to show complete hierarchy of consumer product for a company where products can be up to 500. And hierarchy can be up to 7 level. I am attaching 4 level horizontal & vertical hierarchy view, please vote for which one is better. You can also share other better option. Thanks!

horizontal view of product hierarchy

vertical view of product hierarchy

  • Before you decide how to display your hierachies you should reconsider the 7 levels. I think your hiearhcy is too deep and will be diffucult to use and understand. I suggest you to use a wide and shallow hierachy of maximum 3-4 levels. Commented Jun 8, 2017 at 6:00
  • Thanks @DesignerAnalyst ! But I can't change hierarchy levels because it's predefined by client. I can change only view of this hierarchy for easy & better access. Commented Jun 8, 2017 at 6:09
  • The client is not always right, information architecture is part of the UX, but maybe there is a business constraint that requires 7 levels. Commented Jun 8, 2017 at 6:21

1 Answer 1


When u have a more than 4 level of hierarchy it becomes harder for user to see the hierarchy structure i.e Parent>child1>child2>child3>sibling1>sibling2>Child4 in this case you lose context of in which parent does the child exist or in which child does a sibling exist. it is always good to use a lines that connects to each other with a indention and clearly shows the structure of a hierarchy.

Check my attached examples. I have made a version using grey shades , each level has a different shade and this is upto 4 level and if hierarchy extends beyond that the last color will repeat (as too many shades spoils the design)

Hope this helps!! Let me know if i can help you more

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  • Not sure , But even if you are using horizontal approach try keeping context available for user. may be try to use a breadcrumbs and show their previous selections
    – Harshith
    Commented Jun 8, 2017 at 6:08

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