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At the moment I am building a web application that stores a lot of data inside of tables. In each of the pages containing the tables the users have many actions; they can add, delete, or edit the data.

Right now all of my buttons for adding new data are labeled as "New", however I am starting to wonder which label would be better suited for this application. "New" or "Add"

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Although "New" is inviting, "Add" is more direct as well as inviting! –  Mohit Mar 22 '13 at 3:30

4 Answers 4

up vote 13 down vote accepted

If you're adding more items into a collection of items, then the term to go with is Add.

If the action is to create something totally new that isn't part of a clear collection, then I'd go with New.

Since you have tables where you can add data (a row collection where you add rows), I would use Add for inserting new rows of data. It's quite common in tabular data.

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That is a great way to put it thank you very much. –  Jason Frade Mar 21 '13 at 18:52

If you're inside a list or another group of things "Add" would be appropriate since "New" may imply an entire new group.

But if your adding a new group of things "New " would be better.

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Use "Add." This follows two best practices:

  1. It's consistent. If the other options are to delete or edit, those are verbs, so you should use the verb add as well.
  2. It contextualizes the action for the user. While New is impersonal, Add is what the user is doing.

In their answers, @BennySkogbery and @SamuelM have suggested that in larger applications New is best used for collections, while Add is better for individual items. If there's space, I would suggest instead still following the best practices I've listed above and just appending additional words after add such as "Add collection" or "Add row."

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Because the word chosen involves multiple best practices I've posted an answer, but I feel that without the consideration of best practices this question would have been too narrow/localized to be a suitable question for the site. –  3nafish Mar 21 '13 at 19:01

I think Add would be a better option because it implies that you're adding something to an already existing element, in this example a table. If you are creating a new table however, New would suit it better.

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