Office Add-in UI/UX - New menu item or add to existing menu?
Made some UX-research regarding Add-ins. Found that some providers add their own Add-in to the main menu to get their own ribbon. There are some pros and cons:
Easy access: By adding the Add-in to the main menu the providers add-in become easy to find in the ribbon as the ribbon will only contain the providers add-in.
Two clicks: Accessing the add-in will need two clicks: First from the main menu, then from the icon in the ribbon to activate the add-in in the task pane.
Zig-zag eye navigation: New main menu item will be added to the right of all default items. Providers add-in Icon will be added to the far left in the ribbon. The task pane will open to the far right side in the app-window. The tooltip is pointing at the add-in at the main menu - not on the add-in icon in the ribbon.
Overload: If all providers do it this way the main menu will be overloaded with add-ins
One of the main reasons for adding the providers add-in to the main menu is accessibility issues. In cases where the ribbon is minimised (by default at typically a stuffed Home-ribbon) the add-in icon is not visible for the users. Maximising the ribbon is done by clicking a tiny and almost hidden chevron. When maximised the add-in is visible
Wonder if it is possible to automatic - or in some way - always maximise the ribbon when adding new add-ins?
Do Microsoft have any usability tests telling which solution is preferred? Either adding the add-in to the main menu - or adding it to one of the existing menus (Home, Insert, etc). It would help a lot in my case.
(Another alternative solution might be an Add-in item added to the main menu where all providers could put their add-ins to access them from one common ribbon)
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