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I have a table with multiple rows of data. The last column of this data table contains a group of icons representing actions a user can perform on that row of data. Actions include: View, Print, Edit, Delete. Is there a best practice for how to order these actions? Should Delete always be last?

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    Your ordering is fairly consistent with other apps, so it probably won't surprise too many people. (Surprises are generally bad.) You'll probably find it more important, but harder, to pick good icons. And make sure "Delete" has either a second confirming action, or that "Undo" is easy to use. – John Deters Apr 9 '14 at 0:19
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To make it stage one acceptable you may want to follow the conventional ordering of the icons so that the user has one less thing to figure out or take care of before performing any action. I do have a suggestion regarding the use of icons. If possible and feasible, place hyperlink on the defining (column) table cell of the row (like some title or id or what ever is the chief component of information in the table) for view/edit page. Intuitively when the users look at the link on the word they will be drawn to click it because it will say there is more detail to it. Moreover if the record is too long to make the user scroll to the action column it will be a more of an effort for that user for merely viewing the details. Consider doing that for multiple records back to back. This will also reduce the number of icons the user has to worry about in the action section and that will give you the space to experiment with the placement of the remaining icons.

  • Excelent point about making "view" a link instead of an icon. – Franchesca Apr 9 '14 at 7:48
  • Thanks, it just seemed more intuitive to have it that way. – roni Apr 9 '14 at 16:09

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