I am building an application where I have a vertical list with cards and I want to delete a single item from the list by swiping left. Nothing wrong with this, right?

Well, these items are "important" since other parts of the application depend on them, so I want to put a Confirm Dialog after the swipe action asking the user whether they are really sure about the deletion or not.

Since this is not a common behavior, is it OK to do this?

2 Answers 2


Nielsen Norman recommends using a confirmation modal before "committing to actions with serious consequences" but not committing to "routine actions." If deleting a list item has serious consequences, which it sounds like it might, a confirmation modal might be the right approach.

If it's likely that users will want to delete several list items at a time, consider adding batch delete functionality where they can select several items to delete. This way they won't have to deal with modal after modal when deleting multiple items.

  • Thanks for your answer. I know that every time you have a serious consequence you might use a confirmation modal, my doubt was more on the fact I wanted to put the modal AFTER the swipe to delete... Won't it feel weird to have a confirmation modal after a swipe to delete an item? As regards multiple selection of items, I will certainly provide this feature, thanks for your suggestion
    – pochopsp
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 19:51
  • @pochopsp maybe I'm misunderstanding, but putting the modal after the swipe action is the only option, since confirmation modals have to go after the action you want the user to confirm.
    – Chloe
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 21:12
  • No misunderstanding, you got it right. So you say it's ok to do that, and I do appreciate your suggestion a lot. It just seems a bit weird to me since I couldn't find any example of a real application doing that
    – pochopsp
    Commented Jul 11, 2023 at 21:58

Just adding to the message above...

Even following the NN/g best practices (sing a confirmation modal before "committing to actions with serious consequences"), when showing the feedback for the user that this item was deleted, it is important to also considered the 9th user interface heurisitics and Help users recognize, diagnose, and recover from errors

  • Use traditional error-message visuals, like bold, red text.
  • Tell users what went wrong in language they will understand — avoid technical jargon.
  • Offer users a solution, like a shortcut that can solve the error immediately.(e.g. Undo)

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