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For example, an "Edit" button. In most pages, it is a secondary button ("Submit" may be the primary one). But there can be a case where in "Edit" is primary action for the page.

Is it good practice to make it stand-out on such pages? Or should secondary buttons remain secondary on every page for consistency?

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4 Answers 4

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Choose the buttons to be primary or secondary depending upon the context of the page. Your buttons must align with the objective of the page and the styling,design and placement must be done accordingly to ensure that they help the page achieve its objective. To quote this article about call to actions

Choose contrasting colors and size your call-to-action button accordingly to help set it apart from other visual elements on your pages

If offering two call-to-action choices (such as a Sign Up button and a Free Trial), make the buttons color-coded according to the most important action you want users to take first.

Hence dont get caught up in the aspect of maintaining the design for all similar buttons even though their expected impact on the page might be different.

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When you want the 'Edit' button to be primary you need a secondary button like 'Cancel' the edit button will act as a Submit button. so in other terms something like 'Save'

So instead of changing the 'Edit' button to primary you should make a new Primary button called something like 'Save edit' or something similar to that.

In my opinion it is better to leave the normal 'Edit' button secondary so you have a better structure in your pages.

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It depends on how often a particular button (say 'edit') is the primary action on a page. If it is secondary 95% of the time, then it is better to maintain consistency with how people recognise the button and keep it styled as a secondary button even if it is a primary action on a page.

However, if there is more of a balance between when it is the primary and secondary actions, it may be better to style it accordingly.

You have to take into account your app flow in making these decisions, and test it with your users. That is the only way that you will know for sure whether this is confusing for them or not.

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Context over consistency.

Don’t mistake consistency for uniformity.

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Could you add a reference to your statement making your answer more credible. As of now this is just opinion... Thank you! –  Benny Skogberg Apr 17 '13 at 6:27

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