when and how best to give feedback to users about invalid entries in data they have provided.

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89
votes
17answers
21k views

What is best practice for designing form error messages?

I've seen quite a lot of research on form design, but so far, I haven't come across any studies on error message design best practices. The only piece of advice seems to be that each error should ...
57
votes
6answers
5k views

Preventing a user from pasting from the clipboard into a mandatory form field

In my online checkout process I, like many checkouts, have a field for the customer's email address along with a field to confirm the email address. They are both identical text boxes and accept email ...
35
votes
4answers
3k views

Should I empty the wrongly filled fields or leave as user has filled after validation message?

In our mobile applications (intended for Android and iOS platforms), we have fields that should be filled by users. If the user fills the field not in required format what should I do show the ...
34
votes
9answers
8k views

Is a confirm email address field still considered a best practice?

Having an input field to confirm an email address is pretty standard. However, I would like to know if using a confirm email address field still considered a best practice. The Email/Confirm email ...
31
votes
12answers
3k views

How to clearly state to the User what characters are valid

I'm trying to determine the best way to inform the User that an input accepts certain special characters. Alphanumerics are simple enough, but I feel like I'm losing clarity when I get to characters ...
31
votes
11answers
4k views

Make user aware that he cannot enter arbitrary values into textbox?

In my current web project I have a textbox where the user can enter a bid for an auction. However, to prevent bidding of arbitrary sums, only certain values that match predetermined intervals are ...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

Character limits on fields - pros and cons and best practices?

Some of our form fields have character limits. We're debating whether we should reflect the current size of data entry, or to simply hard-limit and inhibit data entry beyond that size. In HTML, ...
22
votes
8answers
4k views

Mark or don't mark required fields if all are required?

If all fields in a form are required should they be marked somehow (eg. with an asterisk)? I see this done a lot and find it redundant? There could be a difference in big forms and small forms, but ...
21
votes
6answers
3k views

Disabled submit button on form vs allow submit then show errors?

We have a few different forms as part of a web-based medical application. These forms have quite a few fields - 10-20 depending on the form. Each has at least 5 or so required fields. We currently ...
20
votes
12answers
2k views

Should date validation allow “091011”?

Should I allow users to input the MMDDYY or MMDDYYYY format for a date? That is, should any date validation logic not trigger a validation error if the user just wants to put in the numbers without ...
20
votes
10answers
3k views

When client and server side validations occur, doesn't it make for a better UX to only do server validations?

I find a problem on the MVC4 project I am working on now, using Fluent Validation, in that some validations are delegated to the jQuery client side validation, while some, such as the NotNull rule for ...
19
votes
6answers
6k views

How to mark required (and optional) fields in a form where some fields are NOT editable?

I have a form showing properties of an entity in a web app: some of the fields in the form are read-only and some are editable. Within the editable fields, some are required to be filled with a value ...
18
votes
5answers
811 views

Is it better to have an icon in front of validation messages?

As you can see in the above image, there is a validation icon in front of the text. This is unnecessary, but I thought it might be good to catch the eye. If there is no icon, it's still clear ...
15
votes
7answers
657 views

How the user should be informed that the file she submitted is not an image?

In a given web application, the user can upload images. Currently, when the user uploads something which is not an image, the JavaScript alert box with the message "Please Select only Image Files!!" ...
15
votes
8answers
717 views

Is it ok to change the (US) address input field order in favor of a pre-fill feature?

I am working on an international site that requires the user to enter his postal address. I am wondering if it makes sense to have a slightly different order of input fields in favor of a time saving ...
14
votes
7answers
1k views

Is it bad practice to mark a field as required but not really require it?

I have a customer who wants a form on his site to collect address information but does not want to lose customers who are reluctant to give that information. Since many people are simply lazy about ...
14
votes
9answers
12k views

friendly format for Phone Numbers

Currently on my website users are required to input their phone number in a very specific format (555-555-5555). If you forget the dashes it breaks. Does anyone have a good suggestions for how to be ...
14
votes
2answers
339 views

When should auto-correction occur?

I was using MS Excel and a question arose concerning input auto-correction: when is the right time for it? Some context first: as I'm in France the comma (,) is used as decimal separator. Thus when I ...
14
votes
4answers
289 views

Is it ok to force a user to reenter data instead of editing existing

Is it acceptable to force users to delete and recreate data they entered incorrectly or should they be provided with a way to edit every instance of that particular data? Use Case: The wireframe ...
12
votes
4answers
848 views

Text Field Validation vs Prevention

I've been having a debate (mostly with myself) over the best approach to deal with invalid input in text fields -- validation versus prevention. Taking a numeric text field as an example, is it ...
12
votes
6answers
648 views

How would you create and validate personas for something that is not a person

There are a few questions here about personas, and research methods that you might use in order to create them, (some of which I've answered at length). Examples include: What research methods can I ...
11
votes
7answers
3k views

Reasonable character limit for a comment field on a site feedback form?

I have a simple feedback form (see screenshot) on each page on a site. The user has to select whether the page was helpful or not (radio buttons yes/no) and there is also a text area input where the ...
11
votes
5answers
559 views

What would be the best way to let a user add a URL to a form?

Currently our webapplication simply shows a textbox with no validation at all. There is a small icon placed next to the textbox that allows the user to open the URL in a new browser window to check ...
10
votes
5answers
770 views

Progressive Validation and Disclosure

I am trying to find an example of progressive validation. We have a UI for a a visual editor where a user does things like indicate dimensions in pixels or percent. The editor properties are in sets ...
9
votes
4answers
976 views

What is the best way to display date validation errors?

I am performing date validation on several forms. This validation includes making sure a date does not fall on a weekend, does not fall on a major holiday, is at least 3 business days from the current ...
9
votes
1answer
279 views

Should I allow users to select a valid but disqualifying option?

I'm working on an application form where a user must be 18 years or older to apply. Should users be able to select years that would equate to them being younger than 18 or should I remove them from ...
9
votes
2answers
906 views

Generic clientside form validation

I'm the author of the jQuery Form Validation plugin, which I started writing in 2006. Since then I've put quite some effort into improving the default interaction, without the developer using the ...
8
votes
4answers
881 views

Field that doesn't allow spaces - giving correct feedback

On our mobile app's login screen we have three fields, the last of which is used to build up a URL. Since spaces isn't a good idea for the hostname part of a URL the user input must be sanitized ...
8
votes
3answers
304 views

Validation message review about using ! and using short, direct messages

Is is appropriate to put '!' at the end of validation message? It is good to use short and direct message such as "xxx required" or "Enter xxx" right ?
8
votes
5answers
6k views

Disabling submit-button until the user has completed the form

How do you think about disabling the submit-button until the user has completed the form or the required fields? I find similar questions here on ux.se and somebody answered that the user will think ...
8
votes
3answers
11k views

What should be maximum and minimum length of persons User Name & Password? [closed]

I am wondering because I am trying to make sure that person have right amount of spaces for their user name. User Name and Password are security measures and should not be easy to guess. I have fixed ...
8
votes
2answers
341 views

Why do most Create Account forms clear the password fields upon wrong validation? [duplicate]

In most Create Account forms that I've used, when you enter in something wrong (username not long enough, passwords don't match, invalid email, etc.), it'll keep all the fields but erase the password ...
7
votes
5answers
3k views

Where is the best place to show validation/error messages in a form? [duplicate]

Where is the best place to show validation/error messages in a form? Beside a field? underneath a field? Reserve an area on the top/bottom of the page, and show any error/successful message there?
7
votes
3answers
281 views

Are extensive validations necessary on mundane input forms in a website?

I'm having a rather bitter affair with my client who also happens to be my boss at office. He is a completely non-technical dumb muggle in terms of application development. The frustrating thing is ...
7
votes
2answers
489 views

Validate on blur or keypress?

Is it better to give the user instant feedback that a field is invalid on keypress, or should you wait until they blur the field? The first option might annoy users if they are told their input is ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Should URL input fields automatically prepend http:// if the user leaves it off?

If I ask a user for a URL, and they type in something like 'www.google.com', should I assume they meant http://www.google.com?
7
votes
2answers
107 views

Showing completion but not validation

I'm working on a wizard-esque form that will have multiple steps. I'd like to show that you've finished a step. The catch is that we don't want to give the end-user the impression that the step is ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

What are the best practices of designing a validation message on an iPhone App?

I am working on designing an iPhone app and I need to know which validation message style is the most recommended for the forms included. I don't prefer to use a pop up window i need something that ...
7
votes
2answers
331 views

Does inline validation at login create a security risk or a perception of one?

When a user types their email address into a login form, I'd like to validate inline whether the email is associated with an account. The idea here is that, in the system in question, a large ...
6
votes
6answers
659 views

“Doesn't look like a valid…” versus “..is invalid”

I'm not designing anything at the moment but this thought popped into my head earlier. What do you think would be the pros/cons of wording validation errors as: "This doesn't look like a valid phone ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

How do we validate our persona?

When we pursue our goal of ease of use for our users we sometimes use personas to test or guide our designs. And that’s all good – because it gives us a feeling of how a user would interpret the ...
6
votes
3answers
241 views

Is Successful Validation useful for step forms

We've been designing a registration form with 5 steps. The form has many input fields, some required and some not. The validation is client side and is represented with red text for errors. I was ...
6
votes
3answers
449 views

Changing asterisk color or removing it after user completion of required fields, good?

In a web form in which you signal required fields with a red asterisk, is it good UX to change the asterisk's color or even remove it after the user fills in the corresponding required field?
6
votes
2answers
136 views

Would it be good to only show invalid fields when showing input errors?

It occurred to me that it might be a clever idea to only show the fields with problems when a user makes a mistake on a form. This would be server-side validation, with the assumption that there is ...
6
votes
3answers
135 views

Limiting user input - beneficial or user annoyance?

I am coming up with my project's validation framework, including preventative error handling. I have been debating as to whether I should limit user input to prevent errors in cases such as prices or ...
5
votes
7answers
782 views

Should we use “please” for validation messages for e-commerce applications

When we build an e-commerce application (most probably a web application), input validation is one of the core concepts of these type of applications. When the validation fails, we need to provide a ...
5
votes
4answers
263 views

In-Line Form Validation - Checking for numbers in a persons Forename / Surname field

If a user enters numerics in their Forename / Surname field should this trigger the validation - the same as would occur if Alpha characters were entered in a Phone Number field? I would suggest that ...
5
votes
2answers
261 views

“soft” error messaging. Is that a thing? Precedence?

We're on a project where the concept of a 'soft' error for a web form came up. It's an interesting idea, but I can't actually think of an example of it being used in the past, so perhaps it's not a ...
5
votes
5answers
463 views

What alternatives to calendars exist for inputing dates on websites?

Inputing dates is going through changes on the internet, and in web/user interface design as well. Currently, I'm implementing <input type="date">, as this provides excellent usability on mobile ...
5
votes
2answers
347 views

Automatically limiting or correcting numeric input field values

The application interface I am working on has an slider to select a number, but offers a text input field next to it. This allows reading the currently selected value, but also supports keyboard ...