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I am designing a chart where users can select a basket of products, and then view the prices for their selected items in a particular country.

Using a dropdown, users can select which country they would like to see pricing information for. However, not all products will be available in all countries.

This means that if the user has selected 3 products, there may be no pricing data available for any of them in the United States. But other products which they have not selected could have data for the United States.

The goal is to inform the user that based on their selection of products, there is no pricing data available in certain countries, but unselected products are available in other regions, which are being shown in a disabled state within the dropdown.

Can I please have some advice on some concise microcopy to include inside of the dropdown, as shown here?

dropdown options with disabled state

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    This is a complex conceptual task. What if 2 of the 3 selected has US pricing but 1 doesn't ?? Also, are you indicating along with each product what pricing data is available? Nov 25, 2022 at 10:12
  • And when you write, "...advice on some concise microcopy to include inside of the dropdown..." do you mean specifically instead of "PRICE DATA UNAVAILABLE"? Are you open to other and/or broader suggestions? Nov 25, 2022 at 10:15
  • @bloodyKnuckles Yes, specifically a replacement for PRICE DATA UNAVAILABLE. It's very complex indeed — if 2/3 have pricing in the US and 1 doesn't, only those 2 products would appear on the chart. We have a supporting table underneath the chart to indicate that there isn't data available for the other product, but not directly in the chart itself.
    – zYzX
    Nov 25, 2022 at 10:51
  • What does the chart look like? Are you allowing the user to first select the country pricing before seeing the chart? ...or select country then limit the products in the chart to the selected country? Nov 25, 2022 at 11:38

3 Answers 3

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I would instead suggests that as long as you have one product with price data for a given country, that country should be selectable.

Then, on the results screen, you use "price data unavailable" as a heading above the products (or as a label beside the products) without price data.

In the menu, "price data unavailable" then becomes interpretable for a group that has no prices for any of them.

But the wording could be "no data for product(s) for:" since "price data unavailable" sounds like the whole country has no data.

This approach makes it much easier for me to get to the place where I learn which product is problematic, and to not be barred from finding out about the others while I try removing different items from my cart in frustration.

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You can also simply specify it in the dropdown, like so:

image of a dropdown with countries listed. Japan has "some prices unavailable" underneath it in amber text and Belgium has "all prices unavailable" underneath it in red text.

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I think what you are looking for is how to show the context (of a query result), in the information visualization sense.

I am thinking of sparklines and small multiples, for inspiration.

So, one possibility, albeit more complex, is to show, next/below each item in your dropdown, a (thin) "bar" whose length is proportional to the number of selected products for which you have (pricing) data. Think of it as "coverage".

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