We're working on a web application where we store infrequently used items in an archive. The physical analog to this is a file cabinet.
Right now, we have this when it's empty:
And this when it contains 2 items:
However, the user feedback we received is that showing the number of items seems to describe that there is an action required on the user's part (much like unread items in an email inbox).
Is there a better way to represent this? Is it better to just show the first image regardless of what's in the archive?
(Also, not sure the best UX term to describe this - "affordance" isn't really the right word I'm looking for.)