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I'm not working in the field of UX, but something occurred to me the other day that I would like to ask.

Let's say we are logged into a website, and at the top of the page, you have a dropdown for modifying your profile. Typically, on websites, you see "My Profile" or "Your Profile". Occasionally, you see "<Name>'s Profile" - e.g. "Jay's Profile".

Personally, I believe that I find my settings faster, if I see my name, rather than the words "my" or "your".

Is there any research done to prove which one is faster for the user to find?

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    Hey, there's a similar question here: ux.stackexchange.com/questions/24612/my-account-or-your-account – JotaRMonteiro Sep 16 '15 at 13:06
  • Thanks @JotaRMonteiro. I saw that question but that's "my" vs "your". My question is slightly different. – Jay Sep 16 '15 at 13:20
  • I've never seen "<Name>'s Profile" used anywhere, but a lot of sites/web apps (e.g. Stack Exchange) do show just the user's avatar / user name. People intuitively know that links to user account info even though the word "profile" or "account" isn't there. – nightning Sep 16 '15 at 21:13
  • I think the overall tendency in answers on the topic of ‘My’ vs. ‘Your’ is to use neither. User (nick) names as an alternative have not been considered in questions (but may be in some of the answer which I haven’t all read right now, although you should), so it’s justified not to close as a duplicate. NB: I find it confusing if a link to my profile looks the same as to anyone else’s. – Crissov Sep 16 '15 at 22:13
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Using your name on profile makes sense but you can't use it to other situations e.g it would be very strange if you see "Joe's Profile" "Joe's Settings" and "Joe's Payments". It doesn't make sense

For example "My Payments" makes more sense than "Joe's Payments"

Profile is something personal so that is why most of the time, it is combined with your small avatar image to access it quickly (Findability)

  • That's a good example for where the user's name wouldn't really work. Thanks! – Jay Sep 18 '15 at 10:37
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My humble opinion on this topic after some research.

Using a users name jumps in the eye. There is a marketing strategy called 'emotional content'.

The strategy makes use of words that create empathy with the reader. In this strategie some words are considered very eye-catching (like 'free', 'money' or even 'sex') I don't know in how waterproof the theorie is, but because it is so widely used I assume it is effective.

Now beside the words i mentioned above, our own name is as eye-catching as ear-catching (like someones says your name in a group but didn't really meant to address you, chances are huge you heard it). The same can be tested on a list with names, if your name is in it chances are huge it's the first one you notice.

Back to your question, using a users name is certainly the fastest way for a user to find it. Anyhow, if there's a chance that a user doesn't find it fast enough, you should consider to position it somewhere else on the page.

  • I think you perfectly describe it when you say that your own name is more eye-catching – Jay Sep 17 '15 at 10:43
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    Another advantage that I often have with sites that use my profile name is that I know that i'm logged in. Often it's the case that there is a "My/Your profile" button which leads to a login page if you aren't logged in. – DennisW Sep 17 '15 at 14:32

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