Saturday, August 28, 2010

User Experience (UX) Tips (forms consistency)

When deciding to create your application’s forms, be sure to make all or most of related forms have the same page structure and design, why? because this will keep your forms consistent so that users can deal with all of them in the same way, let me show you some real life case to explain the importance of this consistency.

UX Consistency

Driving on different ways example

Say you are a good driver and you know well the way to your work, so you have learned how to avoid roads that have heavy traffic, or roads that might have some maintenance, so you are not focusing on the roads or how to drive, but what if you are going to work in a different way each day, then you will focus on the roads, traffic, radars locations. etc… So you will take a longer time that expected because each day you are experiencing a new way to go to work.

Let’s go back to software and match that case exactly with some web forms in your project

Say you have 2 forms one for adding/ updating countries and the other one for adding/updating measurement units and both forms have only one field for the name of the country and unit respectively. Let’s say that the structure or the design of these two forms is different, (say user will spend 15 min to learn how to deal with that form), so the user is going to spend 15 min learning how to deal with the 1st form and will spend the same time on how to deal with the 2nd form because they are different in design and structure and this will let him feel that your application is too hard to deal with and he may reject your project.
But what about if these two forms have the same design, if the user is going to spend 15 min to learn on of them, he will able to deal with all forms of that type in no time at all. Of course there are special cases you might face but try as much as you can to keep related things look the same.

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