According to the IBM Carbon Design system, empty states are “moments in an app where there is no data to display to the user.” They are most commonly seen the first time a user interacts with a product or page but can also occur when data has been deleted or is unavailable.
But as we will see, they occur in a variety of instances.
As UX writers, we are heavily involved when it comes to designing these “in-between” moments in digital products. Above anything else, they provide opportunities to improve the user experience and add more value to the business.
In this article, we’ll look at some good examples of empty states and consider what we can learn from them.
Example 1: First use
Typically, an empty state occurs when a user signs up for a product or a service, and there’s nothing to show.
Here is a good example by Dropbox Paper (who are known for their strong UX writing). Dropbox has done a good job condensing the core value of its service into a compelling headline. More than that, they encourage the user to take action. When it comes to empty states, this is the absolute best thing you can do.