How to Design Form Buttons in One Breath

  • make their display order count, be consistent
  • avoid reoccurring phrases (use alive headings/icons instead of “Information”, “Settings”, “About”)
  • never use general wordings (like “Ok”, “Cancel”, “Abort”) - use active phrasing (like “Store my information”, “Place order”, “Annul reclamation”)
  • use words humans understand, not machines (“Save location” vs “Store latitude & longitude in memory until cookie dies”), always use a metaphor belonging to the user’s mental model of the current situation
  • differentiate the primary choice of many for example by letting a “cancel editing”-button become an <a>-element while keeping the “save information”-button more button-like; different sizes and colours are alternatives as well
  • let the user confirm their lesser-important-actions by adding an undo-button and confirm their more-important-actions before the action’s taken place with a confirm-dialog or checkbox