What arguments support having a full page modal acting as a hub that takes you to different actions / pages that are linked together?

For instance imagine an app where you manage recipes, you would have a button opening a modal menu with:

  • View list of recipes
  • Add a new recipe
  • View list of ingredients
  • Add an ingredient
  • Manage food orders
  • Create a new food order
  • Manage food preferences

This is completely fake.

My client tends to want modals everywhere. I get the feeling this initial button should rather lead to a "space" on the website about all the above, with a vertical menu giving you access to all these things.

I'm struggling to find arguments one way or the other. Any thoughts?

1 Answer 1


Modals are used to force attention and focus the user on a single task. I have not seen full-page modals used for website navigation because the user often needs to know where they are in addition to where they want to go.

In high-stakes applications where lives or health might be threatened by mistakes from lack of attention (think car touchscreens), a full-screen nav that minimizes distractions is a good idea. But if I'm making brownies and my hands are covered in flour and I need to know what to do next and I'm going to add an ingredient and... the nav interrupts me? I'd test that with some real-time users.

  • You make some very good points. Can you think of any study or research that shows that "the user often needs to know where they are in addition to where they want to go" ? Apr 6, 2022 at 20:01
  • 1
    This comes from the first usability heuristic, "Visibility of System Status" - let the user know what's happening. Here's an article on good nav design that talks about the importance of "you-are-here" navigation: justinmind.com/blog/…
    – Izquierdo
    Apr 6, 2022 at 20:38
  • great, thanks a lot Apr 7, 2022 at 13:01

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