Understanding Success Criterion 3.2.3: Consistent Navigation

Success Criterion 3.2.3 Consistent Navigation (Level AA): Navigational mechanisms that are repeated on multiple Web pages within a set of Web pages occur in the same relative order each time they are repeated, unless a change is initiated by the user.

Intent

The intent of this Success Criterion is to encourage the use of consistent presentation and layout for users who interact with repeated content within a set of Web pages and need to locate specific information or functionality more than once. Individuals with low vision who use screen magnification to display a small portion of the screen at a time often use visual cues and page boundaries to quickly locate repeated content. Presenting repeated content in the same order is also important for visual users who use spatial memory or visual cues within the design to locate repeated content.

It is important to note that the use of the phrase "same order" in this section is not meant to imply that subnavigation menus cannot be used or that blocks of secondary navigation or page structure cannot be used. Instead, this Success Criterion is intended to assist users who interact with repeated content across Web pages to be able to predict the location of the content they are looking for and find it more quickly when they encounter it again.

Users may initiate a change in the order by using adaptive user agents or by setting preferences so that the information is presented in a way that is most useful to them.

Benefits

Examples

Related Resources

Resources are for information purposes only, no endorsement implied.

Techniques

Each numbered item in this section represents a technique or combination of techniques that the WCAG Working Group deems sufficient for meeting this Success Criterion. However, it is not necessary to use these particular techniques. For information on using other techniques, see Understanding Techniques for WCAG Success Criteria, particularly the "Other Techniques" section.

Sufficient Techniques

  1. G61: Presenting repeated components in the same relative order each time they appear

Advisory Techniques

Although not required for conformance, the following additional techniques should be considered in order to make content more accessible. Not all techniques can be used or would be effective in all situations.

Failures

The following are common mistakes that are considered failures of this Success Criterion by the WCAG Working Group.

Key Terms

same relative order

same position relative to other items

Note

Items are considered to be in the same relative order even if other items are inserted or removed from the original order. For example, expanding navigation menus may insert an additional level of detail or a secondary navigation section may be inserted into the reading order.