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I am designing a wizard with 4 steps in it. To make the screens more appealing and easy to click through I converted the radio buttons into big buttons, but they still function like radio buttons in that when you click on a "no" button, then the "yes" button becomes deselected (and visa versa).

Would it be intuitive to progress to the next step automatically when a user clicks on "yes" or "no"?

The complexity comes in on some of the other steps where there are up to three questions with three sets of "yes" and "no" buttons. So in that context the user will not proceed to the next step automatically by clicking on a button, unless they only proceed once they have answered (clicked) on all the required buttons.

My gut says that the "radio buttons" should function consistently throughout the process, but it feels like an effort will be put on the users to have them click on a yes or no button and then on the next button to proceed to the next step when there is only one question with one set of "yes" and "no" buttons.

I'm also thinking about what would happen if the user wants to change their mind on an answer when they have proceeded, which is why there is a back button.

Here is an example of what I am talking about:

enter image description here

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5 Answers 5

up vote 8 down vote accepted

You want to keep it as simple as possible. The way you have it with the 'Back' and 'Next' buttons requires additional thought by the user as you have realized ("why do I need to press two buttons for each question - yes and next?")

A possible solution to this is to allow them to go back directly to previous questions if they want to make a change. Also, as they're only Y/N questions you can show a summary and the answer to the previous questions all on the same screen, with an option to 'change' responses in that section should they wish to. That way they're getting a full picture of all the questions they've answered so far. Once they've answered each question in a section then you can open up the next section for action.

The only issues you may have is if the further questions depend on the answers you've given to earlier questions - in which case jumping back two questions could invalidate the last question you answered. Also, if the wizard is particularly long this approach could get untidy (but I've based my wireframe on an assumption it's not so busy based on your own design)

mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

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1  
+1 I like these accordian styele wizards. I think they also make the task feel much shorter because the whole structure of the wizard is laid out and you can review what you have said at a glance. Nice examples I have seen are in the checkouts at Harrods and John Lewis. Would love to see other examples. –  Lisa Tweedie Jun 20 '12 at 8:25
    
I like the way you've indicated the (change) link. This makes it feel even easier. –  Adriaan Jun 20 '12 at 14:50

Any time that you as the designer have to ask the question "Is it intuitive"... it's not. Keep it intuitive, keep it simple, use existing conventions in your favor. Users know the function of Radio Buttons. They are a intuitive convention. Use them. Do not add confusion to users by reinventing the wheel.

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While i agree with your first statement, I would hardly call using 'Yes / No' buttons "reinventing the wheel". –  JonW Jun 20 '12 at 19:31
1  
Jon, Sorry I didn't make that clear. It is the functionality that is being reinvented. Radio Buttons in forms has been around for years. The user selects the radio button, has confirmation of their selection, then proceeds w/ action button. Users understand that "wheel". Reinventing that, eliminating the radio buttons, and creating two action buttons is problematic. Using just buttons to accomplish the same thing, the user loses confirmation of their selection! He gets redirected to the next page with some confusion. It is always better to keep it simple, and stick to conventions. –  webdesignux Jun 20 '12 at 23:38

I would say no. I would expect the 'yes' button to surface a form asking for email details and, once that was done, the 'next' button would go to the next stage.

That said, if you must ask for email details in a wizard, why not just put the form on the page up-front with an opt-in label and just have 'next' button complete the function?

It could read "Please email me details etc. etc...." underneath would be a text entry box labelled "enter email address"

Clicking next completes the process, and if they don't fill it in it's a tacit 'skip' request. Not perfect but much simpler.

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I am afraid that automatically progressing upon answering could cause more problems than not.

The user needs firm confirmation of the answer they selected. You'd need to have a delay between choosing an answer and seeing the next Q. to assure the user they have made a selection. The timing is crucial. Too long and they will start clicking around!

People change their mind, confer, and make mistakes. Forms usually allow for this by allowing the user to choose when to progress. Does being forced to progress as soon as answering make it seem like a game-show?

You cannot go wrong with NEXT and PREV. Its normal, existing and confirming.

You might save one click, but you are mildly assuming that users are very sure of themselves and are desperate to plough through.

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I would say no. I think a checkbox would fit nicely. This would be better, in my opinion, for a couple reasons:

  1. It meets user expectations. The fact that you asked this question means you're not sure whether jumping to the next screen when "Yes" is clicked is appropriate. And I think your intuition was right.
  2. It allows you to offer a default (e.g., have it initially checked)
  3. It is more extensible. If you wanted to add more options in the future, you could put them on the same screen.
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