Become a better digital product designer with 20+ years of collected UX experience

101 UX Principles

101 UX Principles

An Amazon best-seller, 101 UX Principles explains the most important principles of modern software product design. From typography and interaction design through design ethics and stakeholder evangelism, this is the definitive design guide for UX professionals and newcomers alike.

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Paperback, Kindle and eBook versions available

Praise for 101 UX Principles

Elizabeth Churchill, Director of User Experience at Google


"Good to read from beginning to end, and a nice dip-in-and-out text, the chapter titles reminded me of principles I don't even think about explicitly when I likely should. The book inspired me to start more explicitly articulating some of the principles I just take for granted."

Kate Pincott, Product Designer at Facebook


"A great Mood Booster and Pep Talk. Like a good pep talk from a sports coach before a game, Will reminds us of the common pitfalls we all come across."

Anne-Marie Léger, Designer at Shopify


"This is a great practical read. It is convenient to use as a reference when solving real UX problems. I would definitely recommend it as an introduction to UX, but also as a good reminder of best practices for more experienced designers."

101 ways to solve 101 UX problems clearly and single-mindedly.

101 UX Principles shows you the 101 most important things you need to know about usability and interface design.

A practical reference for UX professionals, and a shortcut to greatness for anyone who needs a clear and wise selection of principles to guide their UX success.

Learn the key principles that drive brilliant UX design.

Key features

101 UX shortcuts to success for beginners

Browse over 20 years of collected user experience insights

Accept or reject 101 thought-provoking opinions on design

Challenge your own ideas on user experience

What you will learn

Use typography well to ensure that text is readable

Design controls to streamline interaction

Provide interfaces that work for users with visual or motion impairments

Understand and respond to user expectations

Who should read this book?

UX professionals both freelance and in-house

Entry-level UI/UX/product designers and students

Mid-level and senior UI/UX/product designers

Product professionals, product managers & owners

  • Table of Contents
  • #1: Anyone Can Be a User Experience (UX) Professional
  • #2: Don't Use More Than Two Typefaces
  • #3: Users Already Have Fonts on Their Computers, So Use Them
  • #4: Use Type Size to Depict Information Hierarchy
  • #5: Use a Sensible Default Size for Body Copy
  • #6: Use an Ellipsis to Indicate That There's a Further Step
  • #7: Make Your Buttons Look Like Buttons
  • #8: Make Buttons a Sensible Size and Group Them Together by Function
  • #9: Make the Whole Button Clickable, Not Just the Text
  • #10: Don't Invent New, Arbitrary Controls
  • #11: Search Should be a Text Field with a Button Labeled "Search"
  • #12: Sliders Should Be Used Only for Non-Quantifiable Values
  • #13: Use Numeric Entry Fields for Precise Integers
  • #14: Don't Use a Drop-Down Menu If You Only Have a Few Options
  • #15: Allow Users to Undo Destructive Actions
  • #16: Think About What's Just off the Screen
  • #17: Use "Infinite Scroll" for Feed–Style Content Only
  • #18: If Your Content Has a Beginning, Middle, and End, Use Pagination
  • #19: If You Must Use Infinite Scroll, Store the User's Position and Return to It
  • #20: Make "Blank Slates" More Than Just Empty Views
  • #21: Make "Getting Started" Tips Easily Dismissable
  • #22: When a User Refreshes a Feed, Move Them to the Last Unread Item
  • #23: Don't Hide Items Away in a "Hamburger" Menu
  • #24: Make Your Links Look Like Links
  • #25: Split Menu Items Down into Subsections, so Users Don't Have to Remember Large Lists
  • #26: Hide "Advanced" Settings From Most Users
  • #27: Repeat Menu Items in the Footer or Lower Down in the View
  • #28: Use Consistent Icons Across the Product
  • #29: Don't Use Obsolete Icons
  • #30: Don't Try to Depict a New Idea With an Existing Icon
  • #31: Never Use Text on Icons
  • #32: Always Give Icons a Text Label
  • #33: Emoji are the Most Recognized Icon Set on Earth
  • #34: Use Device-Native Input Features Where Possible
  • #35: Obfuscate Passwords in Fields, but Provide a "Show Password" Toggle
  • #36: Always Allow the User to Paste into Password Fields
  • #37: Don't Attempt to Validate Email Addresses
  • #38: Don't Ever Clear User-Entered Data Unless Specifically Asked To
  • #39: Pick a Sensible Size for Multiline Input Fields
  • #40: Don't Ever Make Your UI Move While a User is Trying to Use It
  • #41: Use the Same Date Picker Controls Consistently
  • #42: Pre-fill the Username in "Forgot Password" Fields
  • #43: Be Case-Insensitive
  • #44: If a Good Form Experience Can Be Delivered, Your Users will Love Your Product
  • #45: Validate Data Entry as Soon as Possible
  • #46: If the Form Fails Validation, Show the User Which Field Needs Their Attention
  • #47: Be Forgiving – Users Don't Know (and Don't Care) How You Need the Data
  • #48: Pick the Right Control for the Job
  • #49: Allow Users to Enter Phone Numbers However They Wish
  • #50: Use Drop Downs Sensibly for Date Entry
  • #51: Capture the Bare Minimum When Requesting Payment Card Details
  • #52: Make it Easy for Users to Enter Postal or ZIP Codes
  • #53: Don't Add Decimal Places to Currency Input
  • #54: Make it Painless for the User to Add Images
  • #55: Use a "Linear" Progress Bar if a Task will Take a Determinate Amount of Time
  • #56: Show a "Spinner" if the Task Will Take an Indeterminate Amount of Time
  • #57: Never Show an Animated, Looping Progress Bar
  • #58: Show a Numeric Progress Indicator on the Progress Bar
  • #59: Contrast Ratios Are Your Friends
  • #60: If You Must Use "Flat Design" then Add Some Visual Affordances to Controls
  • #61: Avoid Ambiguous Symbols
  • #62: Make Links Make Sense Out of Context
  • #63: Add "Skip to Content" Links Above the Header and Navigation
  • #64: Don't Only Use Color to Convey Information
  • #65: If You Turn Off Device Zoom with a Meta Tag, You're Evil
  • #66: Give Navigation Elements a Logical Tab Order
  • #67: Write Clear Labels for Controls
  • #68: Let Users Turn off Specific Notifications
  • #69: Make Tappable Areas Finger-Sized
  • #70: A User's Journey Should Have a Beginning, Middle, and End
  • #71: The User Should Always Know at What Stage They Are in Any Given Journey
  • #72: Use Breadcrumb Navigation
  • #73: If the User is on an Optional Journey, Give Them a Control to "Skip This"
  • #74: Users Don't Care About Your Company
  • #75: Follow the Standard E-Commerce Pattern
  • #76: Show an Indicator in the Title Bar if the User's Work is Unsaved
  • #77: Don't Nag Your Users into Rating Your App
  • #78: Don't Use a Vanity Splash Screen
  • #79: Make Your Favicon Distinctive
  • #80: Add a "Create from Existing" Flow
  • #81: Make it Easy for Users to Pay You
  • #82: Categorize Search Results into Sections
  • #83: Your Users Probably Don't Understand the File System
  • #84: Show, Don't Tell
  • #85: Be Consistent with Terminology
  • #86: Use "Sign in" and "Sign out", Not "Log in" and "Log out"
  • #87: "Sign up" Makes More Sense Than "Register"
  • #88: Use "Forgot Password" or "Forgotten Your Password", Not Something Obscure
  • #89: Write Like a Human Being
  • #90: Choose Active Verbs over Passive
  • #91: Search Results Pages Should Show the Most Relevant Result at the Top of the Page
  • #92: Pick Good Defaults
  • #93: Don't Confound Users' Expectations
  • #94: Reduce the Number of Tasks a User Has to Complete by Using Sensible Defaults
  • #95: Build Upon Established Metaphors – It's Not Stealing
  • #96: Decide Whether an Interaction Should Be Obvious, Easy, or Possible
  • #97: "Does it Work on Mobile?" is Obsolete
  • #98: Messaging is a Solved Problem
  • #99: Brands Are Bullshit
  • #100: Don't Join the Dark Side
  • #101: Test with Real Users