The Case for and Against Vertical Menu

Just a couple of years ago, the concept of incorporating vertical menu was frowned up by most web designers as it tends to go against the traditional practice of using horizontal menu which is usually positioned at the top of the web page. But there are some designers who think otherwise and they dare to think beyond the status quo. This is the reason why we are seeing a large number websites with vertical menu.

It does not matter whether you are using vertical menu or horizontal menu for your website; you just need to corroborate the fact that your visitors are not facing any difficulties while browsing your website. However, if you are unsure and clueless whether to embrace vertical menu for your website, you need to read the rest of the article where we are going to discuss the pros and cons of vertical menu design.


Pros of Vertical Menu

Vertical Menu comes loaded with a number of benefits that you simply can’t ignore –

1# More Space

Vertical Menu has more space and you don’t have to cram the top navigation with too many options. Visitors will just have to scroll down to be able to locate more navigational links. So, this means, sites with too many sections and pages should be embracing Vertical menu to make it easier for people to browse their websites.

2# Scaling and Altering Is Easy

The best part of using vertical menu is the fact that it blends precisely with pages of different design and structure. If you are in the habit of making changes in the design or adding new pages, you should be opting for vertical navigational menu as it rarely interfere with the design and structure of the website.

3# Blends with Different Length Pages

If your website has pages with different length, you need to opt for vertical menu. Horizontal menu works best for sites that have pages with almost the same width and height. But vertical menu solves the problem. All you need to do is to make it look stylish and awesome and there you go.

4# Scanable

Vertical Menu has the space to add greater number of web pages. Contrary to traditional horizontal menus, Vertical Menu don’t have to use show-hide option and that offers greater scanability to the visitors.

5# Adapt to Different Screen Sizes

One of the unique thing about vertical menu is the fact that it can adapt to almost any screen size. No matter what devices you are using to browse the website, the navigation is sure to look great on the screen.

Thanks to the availability of some amazing website builders like MotoCMS, you will be able to design and develop a website with vertical menu. All you need to do is to try its latest version – MotoCMS 3.0 that comes loaded with numerous templates to choose from.

Cons of Vertical Menu

Despite having so many benefits, vertical menus do have some serious shortcomings that we should not be ignoring. We need to compare and contrast the benefits and the drawbacks of the vertical menu to get a clear idea whether we should be embracing or rejecting vertical menu for a design project. Here are some drawbacks of vertical menu –

Less Clicks

It is observed that most users scan a web page from left to right and therefore, it is quite obvious that people are more likely to click on the links that are placed on the right side of the web page. Moreover, most users are right handed and therefore, it is quite natural for them to click on links that are placed on the right side. Since vertical menu will be featured on the left side of the screen, it can be said that it will receive fewer clicks.

Less Views

Users tend to scan a web page from left to right and that means, the links placed on the Vertical Menu are going to get fewer views and therefore, less effective.

Too Long

If you have placed too many links vertically, it will get cut off and unless the visitors are scrolling down, there is no way, they are going to see rest of the items.

Consume More Web Real Estate

There is no denying of the fact that vertical menu takes up much space. It eats up more space that could otherwise be utilized to place some other important elements to grab the attention of the audience.


Since most people are habituated with horizontal navigation, they feel a little hesitate when they have to browse a web page with vertical navigation. To be honest, most people don’t feel comfortable with sites that have vertical menu.

So, these are the advantages and the disadvantages of using vertical menu. Now, it is up to you to make a decision whether to embrace or not to embrace vertical menu.

Mars Cureg

Web designer by profession, photography hobbyist, T-shirt lover, design blog founder, gamer. Socially and physically awkward, lack of social skills, struggles to communicate with anyone who doesn't have a keyboard. Willing to walk to get to the promised land. Photo and video freelancer, SEO. Check out more on my Google+

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