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I am currently researching into user account pages. But the needs for the company includes components that would also associate to a user profile page (i.e more visible information, tailored content such as articles.)

I would like to know if merging components that belong to these sepearate pages would be a good idea and i theres any findings that support or go against this.

  • could you please demonstrate for a better understanding? – Dimitra Miha May 10 '17 at 10:41
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If I get your question right, I could give a short answer from my personal point of view:

As a user I would separate those two pages by "public information = profile" and "information for the platform operator = account".

Merging those two pages would complicate the clearly and intuitive separation of these privacy levels and result in discomfort.

If there are more information I'd suggest something like "user profile settings" or "account privacy / visibility settings" to clarify such topics.

Or by visual elements like bubbles which are clearly not shown in the public view. (Facebook for example writes "only visible to you" in some boxes to avoid misunderstandings.

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Think this way:

You have one account on StackExchange and have 2 different profiles (Communities). StackExchange keeps this information on same page:

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Read the difference for better understanding -

This is from Microsoft Techcenter:

A locally-stored profile is only accessible from local computer. A roaming profile is stored in a network server and is accessible from any computer to which a user log on.

A user account can only have one local profile stored in a local computer. In Windows XP or earlier versions, the profile is stored under C:\Documents and Settings\ folder. From Vista onwards, the user profile is stored under C:\Users\ folder (assuming C is your system drive). To determine where your profile is stored, you can run the command line echo %userprofile% at command prompt.

If you use the same account to logon to 5 different computers, then then you will have 5 different local profiles. This means that you can have different personal preferences, such as your desktop background or color theme, on each computers.

If your account is configured to have a roaming profile, your profile will be stored in a network server. In this case, your personal preferences, such as your desktop background or color theme, will remain the same no matter which computer your account logon to.


This difference might be well separated in Windows, but for web applications, keeping/linking the information on same page will be a better user experience.

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Short answer: it depends.

Long Answer:

It will depend on what you need. In general, if you don't need a lot of info from the user, it's a good idea to keep it all compact and in one page.

However

There can be a lot of exceptions, not only based on length, but also conceptual exceptions.

Think of this: an user is the sum of many different parts, needs, craves, goals, experiences and so on. So it's easy to see it's impossible to give a "one size fits all" answer. This being said, you won't need all of those parts in a simple profile, but depending on context and needs, you might need different information.

The most important questions are: what is this for? why do I need X info?

For example, it's not the same to ask to fill a Facebook profile than asking for information for medical records, or financial apps, or an ERP. There are many different dimensions of information for these different scenarios.

With this being said, it's not a good idea to mix public and sensitive information on the same page. Instead, you can create a "Profile" section/taxonomy with different sub-sections. For example: Personal Info, Financial Info, Personal settings.

Another thing to consider: unless information is too short, it's a good idea to differentiate static information from user actions and abilities. See below:

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Of course, these aren't the only possibilities, but hope this will give you an idea.

In short

As you may see, there are many many different possibilities, the important part is to make sure the info you request is REALLY needed and that you don't annoy your user with unnecessary info requests, specially if the user may perceive it will be used for an invasion of her privacy, spam, etc

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