Is having "HOME" button in navigation menu necessary if I have a clickable logo? What makes most sense from UX POV?

Was thinking about whether to have a HOME tab in my navigation bar for my content site for career changers. Was reading this article, and it made me think a HOME menu item is really not necessary these days.


We have been collecting usage data on the home button from about 750 websites we manage across North America in an effort to try to determine if it is necessary or not. While each website is different, and much of the data is statistically insignificant, we have started to operate with a few assumptions.

1.) Most users, particularly younger users, recognize the logo as a way to get to the home page.

2.) Websites without home buttons seem to get a comparable amount of traffic to the home page as those that do not. We don't see a significant difference between having a home button or not.

3.) Websites without a home button often will see an increase in direct traffic from returning users during a session indicating that users who do not know the logo is a route to the home page will instead clear the address bar back to the root domain to get back home.

Based on our research, we have decided to omit the home button in most instances. Although when it is present, it is often used, most users seem to understand how to get to the home page regardless of the inclusion of a home button. With the complexity of modern websites, we are usually pressed for space in the header and can better use the real estate that would be dedicated to the home button for other UI elements. That said, if the audience for our website skews older, we will still include the home button. Our research has indicated older users are less familiar with the concept of the logo being a home button.

Answered 6 years ago

I'll provide the standard UX answer: it depends. With the small bit of information you provided it is tough to make a definitive decision. Navigation is key element to user satisfaction. Effective support of the users task flow is critical. A home screen may or may not provide utility to the task flow - it depends on usage patterns. I'm happy to discuss to get more details...

Answered 6 years ago

The home button in the navigation is a dying breed, though some people are really stuck on it.

IMO, the navigation is sacred real estate that should remain uncluttered. A gratuitous Home link adds 0 value there.

The cases when you *may* consider putting Home link in nav are if you're targeting an older (read: elderly) audience, the general population, or an otherwise web illiterate group.

The last case is if you're linking from a site's blog/sub domain and want to direct the user back to the main site. Even then, I think the verbiage "Return to main site" is a better UX than Home.

Let me know if you have any other UX questions.

Answered 6 years ago

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