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Consider profile information views for different user/item* groups.

These profile information views all contain and display similar data and the aim is to keep a consistent layout between different users/items to facilitate easy navigation and familiarization with the interface.

The problem we have is that, because of the similarity in layout, our customers find it difficult to determine what kind of profile they're viewing and often feel 'lost' because of this.

Question: What methods can be used, whilst keeping consistent layout, to easily visually explain to the user what type of page they're looking at?

*Where items wouldn't be individual users but activities that hold similar data as users.

Edit: So to be a bit more specific on the types, to name just a few, we have: senders, recipients, individual mail orders and group mail orders. The problem especially occurs when trying to tell the difference between individual and groups which are not users per say but activities, but it's also not super intuitive when seeing who is a sender or recipient.

  • Could you put some background to the 'types of profile' and why people need to know that they are different? – DarrylGodden Jul 31 at 9:23
  • @DarrylGodden So to be a bit more specific on the types, to name just a few, we have: senders, recipients, individual mail orders and group mail orders. The problem especially occurs when trying to tell the difference between individual and groups which are not users per say but activities, but it's also not super intuitive when seeing who is a sender or recipient. – RobbyReindeer Jul 31 at 9:36
  • Is there any advantage to seeing the difference? Does it change the interface or what action people can take? – DarrylGodden Jul 31 at 11:17
  • would be possible to add a screenshot comparing the two screens that bring the confusion? isn't there already some hierarchy, filter or just a "type-category" field to make that differentiation clear? – Alejandro Veltri Aug 1 at 5:54
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I feel like using icons to differentiate between users/groups/items would be a good idea. Considering that this is specifically to tackle the issue on a profile page, a clear, well-defined icon would do the trick.

I also like subtle visual cues to differentiate between access levels. If you can create a color palette for each group and use it in the header/panels of the profile screen, that would give a clear indication to the user about where they are without breaking the theme/layout.

Obviously, the above solution comes with its own negatives like being not very accessible for people with colorblindness. But it would be highly effective if the set of groups isn't vast

PS: I do that on Slack. I assign different themes to different workspaces to make sure I don't feel lost or mistake one workspace for another.

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Ideas come to my mind:

  1. Add label in the top place at page.
  2. Assign a color to the appropriate group and then display it in UI details
  3. Add a mention in the URL
  4. Icons
  5. Statement at the top place at page.
  • Can you explain the difference between point 1 and point 5 please? – RobbyReindeer Aug 1 at 7:44
  • Yes of course. Label is smaller (like badge) Statement can have 100% width on page – Piotr Żak Aug 1 at 7:57

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