Affinity diagramming is a technique created by Japanese anthropologist Jiro Kawakita in the 1960’s. It’s an idea creation method designed to help you organize ideas by their natural relationships with each other. It can be helpful for organizing and consolidating information about products, processes, or other complex issues or problems.
It’s a technique often used by Product Designers to help decide how to best organize information for an app or website in a way that will be most intuitive for users who might be unfamiliar with certain products or services.
How to use the Affinity Diagram technique:
- Gather your product team for a brainstorming session.
- Record notes and ideas about a specific product onto note cards or sticky notes.
- Have the entire group organize notes/ideas into groups that are in some way related.
- Have a discussion with your team to define categories from these relationships, and select header cards for the various categories that clearly identify the common thread.
Affinity Diagramming can be a very useful method to help you come up with your information architecture for a website or application. It allows you to move beyond habitual thinking and preconceived categories, utilizing a more intuitive approach to grouping information. This can result in a product structure that is easier to understand for end users.
The PSPINC design team would be happy to help you organize your website in a way that best serves your target audience.
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