I've noticed designers using "..." at the end of inputs or search bars placeholders ("Enter your email address" vs "Enter your email address...") seemingly at random. Is this pattern codified anywhere (Accessibility standards, Open UX research standards, UX Laws, etc.)?

two search-bars; one has three dots on its placeholder, the other one doesn't

I'm aware of an affordability UI pattern for dropdown items where if there are "···" generally means that there is something else to come when you select it. Are these two connected somehow?

a select dropdown showcasing dropdown items with and without three dots

  • 1
    The three-dots, (officially known as an ellipsis) generally means that there is something else to come when you select it. Some very useful info on this question: ux.stackexchange.com/questions/9544/…
    – JonW
    Aug 22 at 16:27
  • From an accessibility perspective (WCAG), there are no guidelines on using ellipses. In your "search" example, I would not expect them unless clicking on the search field opens up a dialog for typing in the search term. Aug 22 at 23:25
  • In writing, ellipses are used to convey a pause or to imply something but not state it. I would think the author used the latter to state that it's up to the user to fill something in.
    – jazZRo
    Aug 25 at 16:22

1 Answer 1


No I would not do that. There is no benefit for the user.

We decided that "..." at the end of the caption indicates a follow-up action.

Example: a modal dialogue for advanced search:

enter image description here

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