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The magic rule of seven

  • Thread starter Scottish Business Owner
  • Start date
doogie

doogie

New Member
I have seen quite a few country drop down lists where they are on the whole in alphabetical order, but have US, UK and sometimes a few others bumped out of position up to the top, but unless you concentrate, you can scroll to the position you expect them to be and find them not there, or find that this particular list has England/ Scotland/Wales/ NI rather than UK.

I normally use the keyboard so most of the time it's just a case of pressing U several times, realising you've skipped it, then pressing it again until it comes back round..... or just lying and selecting the first thing in the list :)
 
Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis

New Member
I mostly agree with this. I try to avoid this in my own software, and I get annoyed when I see it in others.

However, I think there's a difference between being asked to pick a definite value, of which there is only one obvious "correct" answer, and choosing from an arbitrary list where the choice requires some thought or judgement.

For example, faced with a list of countries, there's no problem in picking United Kingdom or France or whatever. But if the list contains, say, a list of job titles in specific industries (as in Seth's example),then it's a pain to scroll backwards and forwards through them to select the one that most closeley matches your requirements.

One advantage of alphabetical order is that it makes it easier to do incremental searching (on some platforms). In my own development environment (Visual FoxPro),I can make a setting in my combo boxes to allow the user to home in on, say, United Kingdom by hitting U then N. This is something my users seem to like.

Mike
 

SOTRC

New Member
I have to say this is a pet hate of mine. You fill in a form and have to go all the way to the bottom to find "United Kingdom".

Thoughts?
How weird! I was complaining about this exact issue a couple of days ago while filling in an eVisitor form online. It's annoying when there's loads of countries to go through.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

paulmcd

New Member
You would think that most of this would have disappeared in favour of pre populating this form element based on IP addresses or something.....
 
Boydie

Boydie

New Member
It's surprising the things that you see in the buying process of many online stores. When we worked with Logan Car Hire a while back their booking engine had 7 steps, we cut that down to 3, now with ajax,java the additional things can be added back in but only viewed when a customer wants to view them
 
Needhelp

Needhelp

New Member
Too many options/steps and customers simply go elsewhere - when they have decided they want to do something they want to do it there and then with the minimum of fuss.
 
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