There is some internal debate about whether or not the view results count per page drop down should be at the top of the data tables or below them. I recently made adjustments to our data tables, and moving the view results count per page drop down to the bottom left of the table was one of them. See screenshots for examples.

Top view results count per page drop down Top view results count per page drop down

Bottom view results count per page drop down Bottom view results count per page drop down

Is there a best practice or some research as to which location is better for the user? I can see the preference going for either way. The debate is that the user can immediately see the ability to change the results per page because it might be below the browser fold on some screens. It was moved to the bottom to create more room for action items above the data tables, and also with the thought process that once you're at the end of the data table. You would then decide to change the results per page count.

Some quick searching around I found the following.

Sites using it in the bottom location:

  • Google Analytics (on their data tables)
  • Mailchimp (anytime there is pagination)
  • ux.stackexchange (search results page)

Sites using it in the top location:

  • Target
  • Bhphotovideo

1 Answer 1


First - I do not have data on this. We had a test scenario running for the pagination - wether it should be placed both top and bottom or only on top - so this is not entirely the same, yet maybe some of the logic might be applicable:

Qualitative interviews brought up, that the question of "show me more, please" (which would be kind-of-the-same for the "show me 20 instead of 10") only appeared after users already looked at some items. Since the user does not necessarily know how many items will come up on the item list, the question just does not seem to exist at the beginning of the item list.

The first place where our users expected to see more (or: were satisfied/dissatisfied and did not want any more results) was at the end of the item list.

Anyhow, I think this might be one of the possibly redundant-but-not-bad features: It possibly does not do any harm to have it both on top and below - because you apparently think that the interface is complicated enough to afford such a "show me more on one page"-feature. I'd put it 1) below the content and 2) if I do not think that it clutters the top interface too much, also put it on top.

  • Thanks for your input; much appreciated. I just went over to the other side of our office and had a discussion with two sales reps on what they prefer. They both said the top and were a little frustrated about my change at the bottom. So it appears in this use case we may move it back to the top location. Even if it does clutter the interface a bit more than I'm ok with. Usability comes first.
    – rohicks
    Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 15:18
  • Haha :) Good old design by committee!
    – Jan
    Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 15:23

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