March 29, 2011

Hmmm. Poor Form. #usability #forms

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Given the recent launch and refresh of some notable usability firms, including Adaptive Path and, I’m often surprised at how out of date and 'unuseable' some user consultancy sites are.

Setting aside the minimalist simplicity that is Jacob Nielsen’s, industry pubs and orgs like BoxesandArrows, UPA (yikes), and others are showing their age or seem to be trying to make a point - of what I'm not certain ('Hey look! We built in HTML5 and are W3C compliant! Yeah, we know it looks terrible...).

I found some nice resources on so I gave them the benefit of the experiential doubt I was feeling. Then, I went to sign up for their newsletter. Luke W. would have a fit.

The form is short enough that it could be all left justified to avoid horizontal scanning and facilitate form completion. The form labels could be right justified or top aligned – again to avoid scanning. The optional ‘How did you hear about us?’ field could benefit from a dropdown for information purposes.

Worse, two grey buttons at the bottom of the form. Granted the ‘Save Profile Changes’ is a little bigger, but it can be confused with the ‘Cancel’ button.

I'm guessing this was an OOTB form implementation, but it left me wondering about the resources I was subscribing to. I don’t mean to pick on them specifically, and forms do generally suck, but this one bothered me.

Posted via email from John Hutchings

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