6:2 Place Important Items Consistently
Strength of Evidence:
Document Type: Guideline
Page Structure General
Put important, clickable items in the same locations, and closer to the top of the page, where their location can be better estimated.
Users anticipate where items will appear on their screen. Positioning elements consistently on the website improves user’s task completion. Generally, users can anticipate the location of items near the top portion of the site better than those at the bottom portion.
Badre, A.N. (2002). Shaping Web Usability: Interaction Design in Context. Boston, MA: Addison Wesley Professional.
Bernard, M. (2001). Developing schemas for the location of common Web objects. Usability News, 3.1. Retrieved November 2005, from http://psychology.wichita.edu/surl/usabilitynews/3W/web_object.htm.
Bernard, M. (2002). Examining User Expectations for the Location of Common E-Commerce Web Objects. Usability News, 4.1. Retrieved November 2005, from http://psychology.wichita.edu/surl/usabilitynews/41/web_object-ecom.htm.
Byrne, M.D., John, B.E., Wehrle, N.S., & Crow, D.C. (1999). The tangled web we wove: A taskonomy of WWW use. Proceedings of CHI’99, 544-551.
Ehret, B.D. (2002). Learning where to look: Location learning in graphical user interfaces. CHI 2002 Conference Proceedings, 211-218.
Hornof, A.J. & Halverson, T. (2003). Cognitive strategies and eye movements for searching hierarchical computer displays. CHI 2003 Conference Proceedings, 249-256.
Title: Web Site Consistency (UI Design Newsletter May, 2001)
Description: How consistent do web pages need to be in order to not degrade the performance of experienced users?
Title: Web Style Guide: Page Structure and Site Design
Description: This style guide illustrates the consistent placement of key elements in a web page template.
Title: Designing Interfaces: Visual Framework
Description: This user interface design pattern shows how when a UI has a consistent appearance and when titles and navigational aids are always in the same place, users know where they are and where to find things.
Related Usability Guidelines: