Can someone advise on logic of Next and Previous button when changes have been applied to previous item? enter image description here

2 Answers 2


You could keep the ability to go down (through) the list, but remove the previous, and allow only back to list.

By scoping navigation moving sequentially, I'm assuming your goal is to allow editing at a fairly brisk pace.

If you remove the prev and replace it with the < back to list, items that have been activated will be removed from the list. This reinforces the applications integrity. You give the user a little less flexibility, but the results of their actions are obvious once they: A) Return to the list or B) Cancel their edits

Group similar functions in proximity: navigation

Since < back to list and next > are both elements that related to traversing the list, I moved them up to the top.

enter image description here

Since you may abandon your edits, I added a Cancel link. It's a well known pattern and provides a familiar 'escape' back to the list.

One point of potential confusion might be if a user saves two items in a row, then goes to abandon a change. Would they think that Cancel means the previous two Saves will be undone?

I would test this with users if you feel it's useful to have.

  • What happens when you click on cancel? It seems to me that 'Back to list' and Cancel could potentially have the same purpose. Feb 18, 2019 at 12:22
  • Also, this seems set up for mobile. What is the most likely way for a mobile user to navigate through the interface? By clicking Next? If so, then you may want to move it down to the bottom of the screen to make it easier to use. And should it really by labeled Next Item?
    – cmdoc
    Feb 18, 2019 at 13:43
  • @AntonMircea Yes, Cancel takes a user back, similar to < back to list . I'm on the fence about this one, as I state in my answer. I put that in because I had a situation similar to this. We tested, and without a (redundant) 'Cancel' option, users didn't feel like they were able to get out as easy. I'm not sure this is necessary, but it was for our situation, with our user population.
    – Mike M
    Feb 18, 2019 at 14:31
  • @cmdoc Excellent catch about 'Next' vs 'Next item'. I've updated my mock on this.
    – Mike M
    Feb 18, 2019 at 14:37
  • @Mike, I would keep only the cancel as it's an established design pattern, especially for 'escaping'. Back to list would be redundant. About the two saves in a row, for me it's quite clear that the cancel button applies to the screen you are making changes to, the pattern would be reinforced by the fact that you have to click save after you've made changes on every new step, in order to progress. Feb 18, 2019 at 14:50

You could just;
- place screens 2 and 3 in tabs, instead of showing next / prev
- "back to list" button more natural postion is top left

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