We're building a SaaS product in browser. We've elected not to try to make the entire UI obvious at first, and depend on a "first steps" to orient the user (yes, we thought about why we need one, it's to introduce concepts, not 'click here').

Of course some users will just want it to go away, and for them there's the 'don't show this again' checkbox.

I don't like this UX pattern, as it leaves unanswered the question of how to get it back. Users who prefer to 'dive in' later discover they need the tutorial, and have to go find it.

As an alternative, we're considering a button to toggle "hide guide" and "show guide". I'm considering putting this on the lower left as a fixed element. I know that's a 'UI hole', but this seems a good way to use it.

Is there a better way to avoid the 'how do I get that back?' problem with the 'don't show again' pattern?

  • "it leaves unanswered the question of how to get it back" - upvoted for this very true statement. Nov 24, 2015 at 15:07

1 Answer 1


You could do something like trello or invision does. to have a mascot peeping at the side of the ui. something like the good ol office paper clip.

you could also introduce some logic that the prompt for the guide becomes less frequent as the user dismisses it more to avoid it becoming annoying.

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  • "the good ol office paper clip." That's a phrase I never thought I'd hear!
    – user31143
    Nov 24, 2015 at 13:23
  • That's nice! It solves several problems for us - the original question, and atop it, we're doing a rolling release, so early adopters might like to know about new features, and it's a way to communicate with our users.
    – Anniepoo
    Nov 24, 2015 at 22:33
  • swi-prolog.org has 'do you know', which gives out a random teaser. We implemented this because Prolog programmers were constantly 'discovering' cool bits of the system nobody really knew about. If you're a Prolog programmer and use the site a lot, all the 'did you know's sink in. We could do a really short 'get the big idea' 10 sec onboarding and teach the rest via this method. We already have an explanatory area that shows the help for each tool when you select it.
    – Anniepoo
    Nov 24, 2015 at 22:41
  • and yes, paper clip sadly was a good idea badly implemented.
    – Anniepoo
    Nov 24, 2015 at 22:42

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