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I am making a little question site like Yahoo Answers and I am going to have a voting system on it. But I am stuck on where I should place the up/down vote buttons. I have it in the right corner right now:

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But, I don't know if that is a convenient place for users and there will be a problem when the answer is longer, it won't look right if it goes under the buttons (since I am positioning them inside the answer div) and it probably also would not look right if the text wraps around the buttons. What is an appropriate location for these voting options?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

There are multiple patterns of users on voting sites. Some users exclusively read content. Some users read and occasionally vote. And some users vote obsessively, rating every piece of content.

Users who vote are the most valuable users on a rated content site; you want to encourage voting, and assist those who do vote in being able to do so easily. Because of this, almost all sites with user-voted content put it on the left for easy scanning so that you can quickly see what items you have voted on, and so that the option to vote is the first thing users see.

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That's what I was thinking but then where would the profile picture go? –  Nathan May 16 '12 at 17:48
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Which is more important to your users... the face of the poster, or the rating of the post? I will guarantee that it's the rating, so it should get prime position (left edge), and the profile picture should be sent to a less primary spot such as the right edge. –  Myrddin Emrys May 16 '12 at 19:31
    
Yeah that's true. By right edge do you mean the top or bottom edge? –  Nathan May 16 '12 at 19:58
    
Other than giving prime spot to the voting score and arrows, I am making no recommendation about the location of the profile picture; 'right edge' is just an off-the-cuff position I've seen other sites use. I think that is something that can be chosen based on aesthetic rather than UX, since it is of lower importance. SE puts it on the lower right; many comment sites put it on the upper right. I just don't think it should compete with the voting and score (which are of prime importance), so I believe it should be on the right, not the left. –  Myrddin Emrys May 16 '12 at 20:23
    
Reddit usually skips a picture completely, and puts the username just to the right of the voting buttons. Some subreddits (example: /r/dota2 include custom profile images to the right of the voting buttons. –  Myrddin Emrys May 16 '12 at 20:26

Next to a large icon synonymous with ranking and a number/count.

A heart, a thumbs up, stars, an up arrow etc.

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And where would you place this icon? (and on another point, why is an icon necessary?) –  JonW May 16 '12 at 18:42
    
I'm saying include an icon near or next to your button. An icon is not necessary but it draws my eye to the feature as it is a visual pattern that I recognize immediately. –  Max May 16 '12 at 22:20

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