More and more designers are pushing for inclusivity in design. Designing websites for left-hand navigation is a rising topic for inclusivity in design. A lot of times web designers focus on users with disability in sight, hearing, or speech. However, we rarely think about inclusivity for varied types of users. For instance, are we designing websites for left hand navigation? Or, are we considering left-handed people when we are designing our websites? It is really a tough UX call to design a website for both left-handed and right-handed people.
Now that left handers day is near, there is no better way to celebrate it than to look for ways to design websites for left hand navigation. Here’s some of them:
The reason why gadgets, websites, and almost everything is designed for right hand users is the fact that even left-handed people are right handed users. However, this could be rooted from a complex prelude. You know, it’s like a chicken and egg issue. Are left-handed people right-handed users because they are forced to use gadgets, tools, and websites intended for right-handed people? Or, are things designed for right-handed people because left-handers are simply ambidextrous?
Three tips for designing for left-hand navigation
Center Align is your best bet
It is a difficult choice to design solely for left hand navigation when 90% of users are righties. So, to make your web design more inclusive, using center align for buttons, call-to-actions, is your best bet. Design your sliders to swipe up/down instead of swiping left/right. If at all possible, avoid putting buttons at far corners.
Test your website with both your hands
This is especially true if you are designing for mobile. Many lefties are already precise in using the mouse and computer with their right hands. But, it is a different story when they are using their mobile phones. So, if you are a bit hesitant in the way you have designed navigation in your work, try testing it with your dominant hand first, then your less-dominant hand. This way you would know if either present difficulty and if there is anything else you could improve on.
Avoid pop ups on the side
This kind of problem is presented by both righties and lefties, so it is not necessarily an inclusivity issue. If popups (notification, ads, info panels, widgets, and more) appear on the side panel of a device, it becomes more difficult for the users to notice it. This is especially true for designing anything for touch screen use. Design your popups to appear at the center, top, or bottom of your device.
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