I'm working on a group management application that's built on a three-level information architecture;

  1. User
  2. Group(s)
  3. Content

A user can have multiple groups and every group has it's own content and settings. On a content level the UI is divided into a menu to the left with all content categories (media, pages, posts, etc) and the contents of this category to the right (all media for example).

The problem

The left menu shows the currently active page. However, there are pages that are not part of the menu. For example, group settings or group management (where users can switch, add and delete groups). They are not part of the menu since they are settings of the group and not content of the group. I'm struggling to design the navigation for pages that are not part of the left menu.


How can I show users what the currently active page is when it is not a page from the menu?

Things I've considered;

  • Adding group management to the menu as a content category
  • Not showing the menu on a non-menu page
  • Showing the menu but with no active page in it

I'm looking for a way to make it very clear and intuitive for users that they are on a non-menu page without rethinking the information architecture. It is important for users to know where they are, how they got there and where they can go next.

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2 Answers 2


I'm not sure whether i've understood your problem in a right way.

Based on my understanding on your query, 'Breadcrumb' will solve this problem i guess. On showing the path of the destination, user will get to know in which page he is in and from where the page led from...


In your case, the pages that are missing from the navigation are the ones that allow the user to Configure views/settings.

These pages should have buttons/links like:

  • Save and Continue
  • Back
  • Discard Changes

As these pages do not come under the general workflow of the website's navigation, they need hooks. These hooks should take you back to a central page or the previous page on the site.

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