👋🏻 Introduction
✍️ Context for card sorting
Text Statement
🗂 Organize the following items as you see fit
Card Sorting
❓ How was the overall task?
Numerical Scale
❓ How clear are the list of categories and items?
Numerical Scale
❓ If any, what categories or cards could be more clear?
❓ How could we make them more clear?
👋🏻 Thank you
concept validation

Run open or closed card sorting

Run open or closed card sorting to understand users’ mental model—how they categorize information—so that they can easily navigate your app.

Study objectives

  • Assess the effectiveness of your website's information architecture (IA) by analyzing how users organize and categorize content elements.
  • Understand how users perceive and categorize different types of content.
  • Determine which labels or terminology users find most intuitive and understandable for different categories or navigation options, ensuring clarity and consistency.
  • Gain insights into users' mental models of your website's content structure.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of navigation menus and menu structures in guiding users to relevant content.

Card sorting either open or closed

Run card sort studies to better categorize your information and improve navigation

When should I run a card sort study?

  • New website or app development: If you're developing a new website or application, running a card sort study early in the design process can provide valuable input for structuring content and designing navigation systems.
  • Content audit or restructuring: When conducting a content audit or restructuring your website's content, a card sort study can help identify opportunities to improve content organization and labeling. It can also highlight areas where content may need to be consolidated, expanded, or reorganized for better usability.
  • Usability testing and optimization: Card sort studies can be integrated into broader usability testing initiatives to evaluate specific aspects of information architecture and navigation.

Closed vs open card sorting

Deciding between open and closed card sorting depends on your specific research goals and the stage of your project.

Open card sorting

  • Exploratory research: If you're in the early stages of designing a new website or application and want to explore how users naturally organize content without predefined categories, open card sorting is ideal. It allows participants to create their own categories and groupings based on their mental models.
  • Idea generation: If you're looking to generate new ideas or concepts for organizing content, open card sorting can stimulate creativity and innovation. It encourages participants to think freely and propose alternative approaches to categorization.

Closed card sorting

  • Validating existing IA: If you have a predefined set of categories or navigation structure that you want to test with users, closed card sorting allows you to validate whether users understand and agree with the proposed organization. It's useful for refining and optimizing existing information architecture.
  • Usability testing: When conducting usability testing and evaluating specific design iterations, closed card sorting can provide actionable feedback on the clarity and intuitiveness of the navigation labels and categories. It helps ensure that the final design meets user expectations.

Getting started


Create an account and log in to your Hubble account.


Find and select the template to use.


Edit the questions as you see fit.


Run pilot tests with internal users (ideally, people that are not a part of your project).


Preview the study and check if you need to make any last minute changes.


Publish the study and wait for the results to come in.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is card sorting?

Card sorting is a method used in user research to organize and categorize information by asking participants to group content or concepts into categories that make sense to them.

What types of card sorting methods are there?

There are two main types of card sorting: open card sorting, where participants create their own categories, and closed card sorting, where participants sort cards into predefined categories.

What types of content or concepts can be sorted using card sorting?

Card sorting can be used to organize a wide range of content or concepts, including website navigation menus, product categories, information architecture, content topics, and features or functionalities of a product or service.

How many participants should I include in a card sorting study?

The number of participants in a card sorting study depends on factors such as the complexity of the information being sorted and the desired level of confidence in the results. Typically, studies involve between 5 and 30 participants.

Other Study Templates

Test your ideas as early as possible with storyboards

Understand how well-organized your website content is

Uncover how users categorize info with card sorting

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Card sorting either open or closed

Run card sort studies to better categorize your information and improve navigation