The core question is: Is it useful for users to have easy access to their own profile page on a website or app? Do users view their own pages often enough to warrant spending navigation menu space on it?
In the web app I'm working on, a user can currently access their own profile page view by going to settings page first, and then clicking on a tab within the settings page (called "user activity" for reference).
This profile page view is essentially what another user would see when they click on the user's avatar or username. There is nothing that can be changed about it on that page, it only displays the user's post history, their bio and their profile photo - all things that can be accessed via the settings -> "user activity" path, or (in the case of profile pic and bio) edited directly from settings.
Meanwhile, I'm advocating for including a link to the "user activity" profile in the main navigation dropdown menu so that the user can go directly to their own profile page, rather than having to go through settings.
I realized that I'm thinking this way because every other web app, mobile app, etc. do this, but I'm no longer sure whether it's necessary. Are there any principles, case studies, insights or research that indicate that users really want, use or visit their own profile page if there's nothing they can edit on it?
We're trying to be scrappy on resources, and I got some dev pushback on including the profile link, so I want to be certain of this decision before pushing it to the team.
Also - we haven't launched the product yet, and don't have any users, so I won't be able to test this with user tests for a while.