We've recently launched a site, (http://whispir.com/). My manager feels that the "Why Whispir" link may be missed, as it is triggers a hover menu.

His feeling is that if people rollover "Why Whispir" and a hover menu appears, their first instinct will be not to click the link, but to go straight to the hover menu and begin searching for a relevant link there.

As a result, he would like to duplicate the "Why Whispir" link again inside the hover menu.

Are there any studies to support or disprove his theory?

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  • I don't have studies but that is the behaviour I have observed on my tests and on myself. If you don't want to repeat the link itself, you can rephrase it and add that to the list.
    – PatomaS
    Feb 18, 2014 at 1:31
  • Why is that so wide in width? Is something else planning on going there?
    – user39400
    Feb 18, 2014 at 1:35
  • There is going to be more content filling out the right section at some point. I know it shouldn't be that wide until then, but thats more of a technical issue than a UX issue.
    – Rich
    Feb 18, 2014 at 2:05
  • @PatomaS: To confirm, you have found people miss the top level link? Do you have any statistics you could share?
    – Rich
    Feb 18, 2014 at 2:06
  • @Rich Yes, I have seen it happening. I don't have solid numbers since that is not something specific I have registered on my tests, but seen it happening while testing other features. But If I had to say a number out of my memory, it would be very high, around 75%. What I can tell you for sure is what usually makes the difference, IT people, or people used to browse without JS will click the link, more casual users, or people in a hurry, will miss it
    – PatomaS
    Feb 18, 2014 at 2:22

2 Answers 2


In situations like this where you want people to click your header link to actually navigate somewhere, I've found that it's best not to have drop down navigation sub menus, and if you do, don't make the header link navigational.

But you wanted facts. Instead of trying to find someone else's study, let's just do our own. Let's take a look at what some would consider the top 2 companies in the world: Apple and Microsoft:


Apple nav menu

Apple does not have drop down navigation sub menus. Their header links are navigational and take you to the home page of that particular area.


Microsoft nav menu

Initially, Microsoft does not have drop down navigation sub menus either. They require you to click on the header links and that activates the drop down navigation sub menu. That said, the header links themselves are not navigational links.


You can pick either style: navigational header links with no drop down navigation sub menus or non-navigational header links that, when clicked, activate the navigation sub menus. If you notice though, both styles require a click on the header link, navigational or not. This way, there's no way your user can miss it.


I see you added the reminding "Why Whispir?" in the menu.

Your boss had a point, if a menu appears on hover, then the trigger won't be seen as a link consistently. You will have to rethink the hover approach though for touch (I see its responsive, but a landscape tablet view may well reveal the PC web UI).

Few comments

  • Add a "What we offer" at the top of it's menu.

  • breadcrumb/cookie trail is confusing in the "Resources", why add third tier navigation underneath the breadcrumb? - very confusing

  • get rid of the share bar in the footer, it's on every content page anyway.

  • on mobile/tablet view in your responsive css, lighten the footer links, to hard to read and being touch, the hover hi-light won't work.

  • Good points. I'd disagree about getting rid of the share bar, it should at least be accessible from every page, and it's receiving minimum prominence in the footer. For the footer links, they are hidden on mobile.
    – Rich
    Feb 18, 2014 at 20:40
  • Hi the share bar is accessible on every page twice.. maybe remove the footer one then as the one in the article infers share the article. Feb 20, 2014 at 10:59

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