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Before you start page #112

govuk-design-system opened this issue Jan 15, 2018 · 6 comments

Before you start page #112

govuk-design-system opened this issue Jan 15, 2018 · 6 comments


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@govuk-design-system govuk-design-system commented Jan 15, 2018


An information page that immediately follows a start page. It helps users understand what they need to do before they start using the service.


Qualitative research for Carer's Allowance found that GOV.UK content alone wasn't making people aware that applying for Carer's Allowance may (in certain circumstances) affect the benefits of the person they care for. Data analysis found that people were dropping out of the service when this was made clear to them later in their journey.

Anything else

@govuk-design-system govuk-design-system created this issue from a note in GOV.UK Design System Community Backlog (Proposed) Jan 15, 2018
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@timpaul timpaul commented Feb 9, 2018

Some questions:

  • how would we decide which information goes on a start page and which on this page?
  • does it matter that these pages would not be indexed or findable via Google?
  • are these needs better met by asking direct questions, rather than hoping they read content?
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@jfranciswebdesign jfranciswebdesign commented Jun 25, 2018

Has anyone tested this yet?

We're finding (via eye-tracking, and post-test questions) that users are completely ignoring the 'before you start' content on the Start page of our service because they're focussed on the big green button, so ignoring anything under it.

Putting the content on a separate, dedicated 'Before you start' page seems like a way to get the user to read the content, but having this 'Before you Start' content after the Start page seems illogical. I suppose a change to the page's title would solve this though - 'Before you continue'?!

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@vickytnz vickytnz commented Oct 9, 2019

Some services like Inheritance Tax and Anti-Money Laundering Supervision instead used a page saying 'what you will need' which gets around the before you start issues!

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@titlescreen titlescreen commented Feb 12, 2020

@jfranciswebdesign Did you ever consider having the before you start above the big green button?

We were pleasantly surprised to see people skimming through our before you apply section. I'm not sure if they were originally honing in on the line the application should take around 15 to 45 minutes to complete then reading the before you apply section.


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@jfranciswebdesign jfranciswebdesign commented Feb 12, 2020

@titlescreen Yes, and it tested much better! The issue is that the GDS start page has that content after the Start button - "This is a set pattern, so you will not be able to customise it".

I recall, maybe 2 or 3 years ago, I had a pretty heated conversation with the GOV.UK person responsible for creating the Start page for our service. That person was quite insistent (to say the least!) that "GOV decides how start pages look, not you" this was after I'd explained that we wanted it different based on user research!

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@dalegmoore dalegmoore commented May 18, 2020

How does one get access to some eye-tracking software?

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