Minimal Form Interface

A very simplistic form interface that shows only one text input at a time and reveals the next input with a subtle transition. The concept is based on the form at the bottom of the PageLanes website.

minimalform

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Today we’d like share a very simplistic form interface with you. You’ve probably seen this kind of single input view form in several modern websites. We spotted one in the end of the PageLanes website and thought that this is a really nice and user-friendly concept for a form.

So, the idea is to show the user just one input field at a time, without any clutter or distractions, but only with elements that are helpful in indicating how much needs to be filled. On the PageLanes form this is done by adding the step information to the button that will show the next question. But we tried a slightly different layout, with a tiny progress bar and a number indicator on the right side below the input field. We also added some subtle effects when showing the next input.

Please note that we are using some modern CSS properties like pointer-events and animations which are not supported in older browsers.

Initially, we don’t show the navigation arrow. When we focus on the input field, we’ll make it fade in.

MinimalForm01

The numbers in the bottom right tell the user how many questions there are in total and which question is the current one. Once they advance to the next question, we’ll show a progress bar that indicates the level of completion of the form.

MinimalForm02

The next question can be reached by clicking on the arrow icon or by hitting enter. In case there is an error, the error message is shown below the input:

MinimalForm03

A minimal form like this can be really useful for questionnaires or simple contact forms. The advantage is that the user is less distracted and the filling of this form seems like much less work. Clearly, an approach like this has its disadvantages, too. You can’t go back or have an overview of your answers. But that are features that could be implemented in some sort of way. What would be interesting to see is how a form like this performs and if it’s preferred by the user.

We hope you find this inspiring and we’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic!

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Mary Lou (Manoela Ilic) is a freelance web designer and developer with a passion for interaction design. She studied Cognitive Science and Computational Logic and has a weakness for the smell of freshly ground peppercorns.

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Website: http://tympanus.net/

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  1. 2

    Hi. Love this idea. How can I also introduce some multiple choice questions instead of just the text box? Ie, radio buttons or checkboxes? Thanks for this awesome thing!

  2. 3

    This is awesome. Forms play such an important part in user experience it’s important we nail down two things – how we want the user to use the form and to make it as pleasant as possible. I’ve seen people put function before design on forms, and I’ve seen people go as far as to remove the borders from forms and have them the same color as the background – just to be different!

    It’s all about striking the perfect balance!

    - Brian

  3. 4

    Thank you. Very nice indeed. I’m eager to use it but don’t know where and how to specify the email it should get sent to. It doesn’t seem to work with regular action-php. I’m not a programmer so that might sound really dumb… sorry.
    Then again, this has been asked over and over already and there’s been no answer. Why wasn’t this made clear on the tutorial itself? That’s just mean.

  4. 5

    Thanks for the tutorial but how do i run a php script on action when i have form.submit() and set the form action to the script it just downloads the source php file. please help!

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