Let's say that you have an app and the home page of the app has icons (with text) to link to various actions. One of the actions would typically show you a list of objects that you are subscribed to.
The problem comes in when you are new to the application and haven't subscribed to anything yet. When you tap on the icon to show a list of subscribed items (and don't have anything in that list), we need to show a message explaining that you haven't subscribed to anything yet instead of just showing an empty list.
- Show the message where the list would normally be. This makes the context clearer but puts you in a navigation position where the only thing that you can do is navigate back.
- Show a modal or dialog of some sort on the home page where you tapped the icon explaining that you aren't subscribed to anything. This keeps you on the page where you would need to perform the next action, but makes the context less clear.
- Some other great idea that we haven't thought of yet - hint!
One indirect way to alleviate the problem is to show some sort of flow to help new custoemrs chose something to subscribe to (which we do), but that doesn't mean that you will definitely chose something, or that you will never have an empty list. The question is given that for some reason there is an empty list, where should we notify customers that the list is empty and how should we do it?