I have this Q&A site, where I want the title to be at least 20 characters and the body to be at least 200 characters.

What is the best approach to convey these to the user without having them to submit?

Any good examples, you came across in the past?

  • 2
    There is a similar question here: ux.stackexchange.com/questions/99518/…
    – Sooraj MV
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 8:03
  • 4
    This might sound obvious but you can try to comment on an answer or question here on StackExchange and use it to experiment with what the user experience should be like and apply the learning to what you are trying to design.
    – Logarr
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 22:34

1 Answer 1


The best approach is to inform the user about these rules in plain language next to respective input fields.

I would suggest enforcing a minimum and maximum character limit to handle edge cases and spams.

UXSE Flagging feature has something similar:

  • Notice that before I start typing anything, the message says "Enter at least 10 characters" and the submit button is disabled.

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  • Once I started typing, the message dynamically updates me about the minimum required character count:

enter image description here

  • When the minimum character requirement criteria are met, the Submit button is enabled and now the message informs me how many more characters can be added if I should.

enter image description here

  • 12
    Another benefit of visible, dynamic updates is that it mitigates some of ambiguity about what a "character" is (byte, UTF-16 code unit, code point, grapheme cluster, ...). A user might not know exactly what you're measuring, but at least they'll have some idea if they need more text (or less in the case of a maximum limit). Arguably the specific number of "characters" might not even need to be shown.
    – jamesdlin
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 17:30
  • 1
    for what it's worth, i've always found the language choice to be confusing in stack exchange's dialogues. the difference between "6 more to go" and "6 characters left" is not obvious. i would recommend something less ambiguous, like: "enter at least [x] characters", "enter at least [x-n] more characters", and "enter no more than [y-n] more characters". Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 18:24
  • 5
    @WoodrowBarlow I think there's a benefit in shorter text. You're right that it's technically ambiguous, but entering characters and seeing the number change clarifies it. I hadn't noticed the ambiguity until you brought it up. I think "more to go" is more commonly used to refer to some goal we're trying to reach, like "10 more to go" when doing pushups or some other form of exercise. "X left" is more commonly used when you're running out of a valuable resource, like "10 bullets left" or "10 cookies left" or "$10 left". So, while it's technically ambiguous, it's not colloquially ambiguous.
    – JoL
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 21:11
  • "enter no more than x more characters" sounds quite confusing to parse.
    – GoodDeeds
    Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 21:28
  • i concede that my examples were a bit clunky, especially that last one. really, the "6 more to go" is the only one that gets me confused. but perhaps i'm alone in that. Commented Feb 28, 2020 at 21:42

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