Read Time: 4 Minutes
In this issue of A Simple Notion, I’ll show you 3 simple menu layouts you should be building into every Notion page.
These menus make it MUCH easier to navigate between pages and they optimize your workflow like nothing else.
Unfortunately, most people neglect to build menus into their Notion pages.
Not only does that slow them down in the long run, but it limits the power of of their Notion builds.
If you’re using Notion as a digital catch-all and brain organization system but you’re NOT using menus…chances are it’s going to devolve into a mess.
Menus Will Save Your Sidebar
Menus keep your Notion space organized by showing you your page hierarchy at a glance.
When done right, menus also help you:
- Get to important pages in 1 click
- Bookmark key information for later use
- Keep track of your pages and your work
- Create more powerful hub pages for productivity
By the end of this 4 minute read, you’ll know how to implement simple menus into your existing Notion build and every build from now on.
And trust me, within the first week of using menus, you’re never going to want to go back to the old way (sifting through a messy sidebar….yuck).
MENU #1 - Mega Menus
Mega menus are my personal favorite because they allow you to organize and consolidate pages so easily.
I use mega menus for most of my dashboards because I can nest all of my subpages under them.
The best part of this menu style is you can hide it under a toggle so it’s not always in view if you want to focus.
Here’s an example of the mega menu I use on my personal dashboard:
I’ve organized this to include all the pages I use for task management, habit and goal tracking, and personal things like learning and reading.
This menu saves me time on a daily basis.
If I’m on my dashboard, I almost never open my sidebar.
I don’t need to.
And I don’t need to open the search bar to find what I need.
Everything is right there, at my fingertips.
It also serves as a visual reminder to check in on my fitness, my goals, my finances, and any other area of my life I have linked here.
I recommend mega menus for big, juicy hub pages that have lots of info nested within them.
But, mega menus aren’t for everything (you wouldn’t use a flamethrower when all you need is a lighter, right?) so let’s look at my 2nd favorite menu style.
MENU #2 - The Sidebar Menu
The sidebar menu is perfect for database-heavy pages where you have several projects or pages that you need quick access to.
I use this style of menu in my content dashboard because I rely heavily on my master content database.
However, I want to be able to access key pages regardless of where I’m at within my content-creation-ecosystem.
Here’s an example of what it looks like:
💡PRO TIP - Menus & Synced Blocks
Use a synced block with any menu type – but especially the sidebar menu – so you can simply copy and paste the menu into each page of your hub.
I pasted this particular sidebar menu in every content channel page so I always have access to it and any changes that I make across my hub will be reflected everywhere.
MENU #3 - The Minimal Menu
This last type is the most common menu I’ve seen used among Notion fans and it’s simply a horizontal list of pages across the top of a page using columns.
This can be great for:
- Pages that already have a lot going on
- Project pages that have several reference docs
- Notion users who love that minimal, clean look
Here’s an example of a simple menu that I implemented in my finance tracker template:
I already have a ton going on with my finance tracker, but I just have a few key pages that I wanted access to wherever I go within the tracker.
This saves me time and also gives these pages a place to “live” inside my finance hub.
BONUS → Menu #4 - The Gallery Menu
This is the first type of menu I ever used, and it’s great if you want to keep all your information grouped within a single database: the gallery menu.
All you have to do is create a database with a page for each of your projects/pages/data and then create a gallery view that shows those pages and plop it at the top of your page.
Then, you can create all the relevant subpages within each of those projects to keep everything organized.
In this version, the breadcrumbs serve as a sort of “menu” when you’re within one of the hub pages as well because everything is flowing through those hubs.
Here’s an example of how I use those in my content ecosystem.
That’s it for this week.
Stay nerdy my friend! 🤓
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