I need to let two user type to login in to my website.

Customer and Broker

I already have a dashboard design for customer. Here is the screenshot.

enter image description here

I wonder whether I should keep same dashboard design for both customer and broker or design new layout.

I listed here all available options,

  • Compeletly new dashboard design for broker
  • Adopt some elements in customer dashboard and design new
  • Keep same dashboard elements for both and change content according to logged in user type

Any better suggestions?

2 Answers 2


Why not keep the same layout but with different information for Brokers?

For the users the important thing is to find the information that they need. The page layout doesn't matter that much as long as it doesn't decrease the readability. You have a 2 column layout with left sidebar which is the standard for user profiles. Therefore, you should keep that layout because it is consistent both externally and internally.

Advantages only 1 layout (your current one):

  • consistency between customer and broker profiles (internal consistency)
  • consistency with familiar applications like facebook, twitter (external consistency)
  • less development because you have 1 layout, and you don't have to support two different layouts

Make your user research

You should always research your users and find out about their needs. Maybe I could be wrong and brokers might need more horizontal space for complex tables or charts. My answer is just a best guess, and you should not rely on guessing or assumptions. You should test it yourself and see what is optimal for your specific case.

  • You know, I answered the same thing before you did, but obviously your rep points got the better from the benefit of doubt. Good answer, though!
    – Varun Nair
    Sep 15, 2017 at 12:29
  • @VarunKN Thanks, yours too. Perhaps its because I've laid out the answer in a more readable way with headings and chunking of the content. Sep 15, 2017 at 12:55
  • 1
    Yeah, maybe. Maybe when I gain more experience in answering questions, I'll be better.
    – Varun Nair
    Sep 15, 2017 at 12:59

The main purpose of a dashboard is to give a summarized and an 'overall' view of the system/ application and it's data. A good dashboard is one that gives all the information to the user, in a nutshell. He should be able to get an overview from the dashboard itself, and if he wants to view more on any topic, he should navigate to inner pages.

Having said all this, the dashboard should be highly customizable. The user should have the option of choosing what to see in his dashboard and what need not be shown. It is not advisable to change the theme of your dashboard, with each type of user. The theme is the soul of your website. If you change the dashboard theme based on various users, there will be a lot of work involved, as well as there will be a higher chance of inconsistency.

In my opinion, you should provide a standard dashboard for all users, with variations of contents, based on the user. A customer need not now the details of other customers, but a broker needs to know the details of all his customers. So the dashboard should be customized accordingly, wherein the customer only has the options to view data that is relevant to him and the broker is given all options of data, which he needs.

You can keep a default element as a content for the dashboard, and provide options for the user to change it, modify it and customize it.

Suppose I am a stockbroker. The first thing I want to see in my dashboard are details of the market values for the day. Also, I would like to see a summary of how many customers are going to gain a profit and who all are going to lose money, and by what margin. Now, if I were a customer, I would only want to see if my numbers are good, and the status of my stockbroker. I only want to see the status of the shares I have invested in, atleast only that in my dashboard.

So, the best form to retain consistency is to maintain a single template or a theme, and customize the contents based on the type of user who has logged in.

Note: You dashboard elements should never be fixed. It should be flexible, modifiable and interchangeable.

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