4.3.8 Asking users for information

Use this pattern to gather information from users using your service.

Clearly state why you need the information and how it will be used. For instance, you might need users' information so that you can provide a service, register them for a service, or tailor an experience to meet their needs.

Consider whether you need to ask for the information or whether you can use integrations to get that data from internal or external sources. Check whether you need to ask for consent to ask the questions.

You can use a question protocol to help you figure out what you need to ask. If you ask people for optional information, add ‘(optional)’ to the question. Do not mark mandatory questions with asterisks as these are not accessible.

Question page


A question page should have a backlink to help users who may want to go back to the previous question to make any changes.

Question or question heading

When asking people for information, ask for one thing at a time. Helps users focus on one specific thing at a time and provide its answers without overwhelming them with too many demands at once.

This can be one question per page or group-related questions together, for example, contact details. Grouping related questions together can help users understand the context of each question and make it easier to provide accurate responses. When you group related questions together, you will have a ‘question heading’ that will help people understand what is needed for the set of questions.

Hint text

Provide clear instructions to help users understand what is expected of them on each question.

Question field

Use the appropriate question field for the different question types.

Other ways to provide information

Always provide other alternative mechanisms for users to identify themselves or provide their information so that they can access your service. Provide clear instructions on what to do if they encounter any problems.

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