In my Web application I have to choose between putting a create/edit form of a generic object in a modal or in a new page.

After some Googling it appears that modals should be used to display informations only e.g. a detail modal or some confirmation alert but still I do not found any best practice.

To summarize, the pros of using modals:

  • They are dynamic so it opens faster than a new page
  • They do not break your workflow

The cons:

  • They are not SEO friendly.
  • Harder to debug

So what's the best practice here in terms of usability and functionality?


3 Answers 3


I've got a lot of value out of putting create/edit interfaces in with the rest of the page content.

Typically what I'd do is slide down the create/edit interface when the create/edit button is clicked, and slide it back up again when changes are saved. Fiddle here: https://jsfiddle.net/hr3mhufh/2/

Pros of displaying inline:

  • No need to reload the page
  • Does not break your workflow - interface appears very near to the 'create/edit' button

Cons of displaying inline:

  • More work to hide/show elements on the page (compared to going to new page)?

For editing I might also consider swapping a text element for a an input element when you click on it. JQuery Datatables Editor does this out of the box: https://editor.datatables.net/examples/inline-editing/simple.html


What about an "edit panel" that is displayed to the right of the content? The fields in the edit panel would be automatically populated with whatever record is currently selected. I'm assuming the content is a grid / list of records to be edited.


Answering your question, The best practice used by tech giants such as google/Facebook/twitter is giving a screen to create or edit the form.

Modal might work quick but I guess form creation and editing has been on screen since ages and changing that practice might not entertain the Layman.

For Layman, modal=error/information or some thing with an OK button. The never expect sign up/sign in or any other triggering button.

Filling the form of bank/hospital of A4 size paper will be easy more then filling the form of coupon which is 1/3d of A4 size.

You can self experience the same and thus I recommend you to go with screen other then modal.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.