Power to the People

So I have been creating a custom golf club tool for the project I have been involved in. I have to say this is a pretty complicated web application because there are so many variables to consider.

Granted, customizing one club shouldn't be that hard using a multiple page or using filed set & legend chunking tactics.
But what if the user wants to customize multiple clubs at once? For this B2B site I am involved in, one of the user story was to satisfy a customer who wants to order multiple clubs in one page.

Without further introduction, I will jump to the conclusion first.
Here is the re-design of the custom tool I have mocked up. This design originated from 6 usability tests and couple paper prototyping tests. I have not run a final usability testing with this module, but I am pretty confident that this interface could satisfy the user story.

So the BA group comes back to me and asks

  • Why does the Duplicate Button reside outside of the table?

  • People read from left to right. We need to move the Duplicate Button to the right so people can complete their task then 'duplicate' the configuration. Doesn't it sound more intuitive?

Not a bad reason to start up a quick discussion.

I believe that Duplicate Button will be more effective residing outside of the table on the left because

  1. Duplicate Button is not a part of the club configuration. The button impacts the line item ( layout of the page ) not the content of the club.

  2. It is on the left side to give more power to the people. Yes, people read left to right, and probably it is a right assumption that people will configure the club from left to right as well. But I wanted people to know that there is a Duplicate functionality even before they start customizing. This concept will grant the user with more power. Now they can Duplicate the configuration at any time of the process. They don't have to question themselves what they need to do to customize multiple clubs at once. As I am typing this blog on my word processor to copy and paste it onto the blog page, I have noticed that I am using the word processor because I know for the fact there is a Copy & Paste functionality. If I did not know this fact before I started typing on the word processor, I would have never used this method. By telling users what they can do in the beginning of the process, I believe, the user now have more control with this system.

Obviously, this module still needs more work. But I thought it was just interesting to observe that position of one button could change the way people perceive the whole picture.