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One of our partners is building an application I designed and tested in Axure. I had inferred some AJAX interactions with changing and adding some content to a page, but the developers have built this without AJAX due to the amount of calls that will likely be made. Instead, when new content is added to a page, it will be done with a full page refresh. A defect has been raised in that when the content is added to the page, the user has to scroll back down the page to the location of the new content addition.

One solution is to target an ID in the URL that is reloaded. I have raised that there will likely be a short delay between page rendering and the jump down to the hash ID location, and is not a user-led action to jump the page to this location. I this a usability pitfall, or am I over thinking it?

If we do go with this, I will combine it with highlighting the new content (much like :target, but probably with a new class as we are refreshing the page) visually for sighted users, and have a confirmation message at the target location specifically for screen readers (hidden text off-screen). Does this feel like a suitable solution?

Thanks in advance for any insights you can provide.

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As your developers are concerned
I would not be surprised if your developers are taking a shortcut. A full page load is a lot more taxing on the system than a few extra calls. If a giant page load is possible why not bundle all the individual AJAX calls in one? Their argument doesn't hold and ruins the experience.

From an experience perspective
It is definitely a bad experience to have to reload the page, especially if you designed it not to. Due to that the users expectation mighty be that the page won't reload. In any case, a user might not understand why the exact same page has to reload in order to add some content, especially when other (read competitor) sites don't.

Fight for a better experience :)

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+1 for "Fight for a better experience" – vzwick Jun 21 '12 at 13:33

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