Text Area

Text Area: Enhancing User Input in UX Design

A text area is a versatile user interface element that allows users to input and edit multiple lines of text. Unlike single-line input fields, text areas are designed to accommodate larger amounts of text, making them essential for various applications, such as forms, comment sections, messaging interfaces, and content management systems. Designing effective text areas can significantly improve the user experience by ensuring ease of use, accessibility, and responsiveness.

What is a Text Area?

A text area is an input field that supports multiple lines of text, providing users with the flexibility to enter more extensive information. It typically includes features like resizing, scrolling, and formatting options, enhancing the overall functionality and usability.

Importance of Text Areas in UX Design

  1. User Flexibility: Text areas offer users the flexibility to enter longer, more detailed information, essential for tasks like writing comments, messages, or detailed feedback.
  2. Enhanced Usability: Well-designed text areas improve usability by making it easy for users to input, review, and edit their text.
  3. Increased Engagement: Text areas can enhance user engagement by providing a clear and intuitive means for users to communicate and interact with the interface.
  4. Accessibility: Properly designed text areas ensure that all users, including those with disabilities, can easily input and interact with text.
  5. Visual Appeal: Aesthetic and functional text areas contribute to the overall visual appeal and professionalism of a website or application.

Key Features of Effective Text Areas

  1. Resizable: Allow users to resize the text area to suit their needs, enhancing comfort and usability.
  2. Scrollable: Implement scrolling within the text area to handle large amounts of text without taking up excessive space on the interface.
  3. Placeholder Text: Use placeholder text to provide guidance on what type of information should be entered, improving user understanding.
  4. Character Count: Display a character count or limit to help users stay within desired text lengths, particularly useful for fields with constraints.
  5. Labeling: Clearly label the text area to indicate its purpose, ensuring users understand what information is required.

Best Practices for Designing Text Areas

  1. Optimize Size and Placement: Ensure that text areas are appropriately sized and placed within the interface, providing enough space for users to enter and review their text comfortably.
  2. Provide Clear Instructions: Use placeholder text, tooltips, or helper text to provide clear instructions on what information should be entered in the text area.
  3. Implement Auto-Expand: Consider using auto-expand features that automatically adjust the height of the text area based on the content, reducing the need for scrolling.
  4. Ensure Accessibility: Make sure text areas are accessible to all users by adhering to accessibility standards, such as providing sufficient contrast, enabling keyboard navigation, and using ARIA labels.
  5. Validate Input: Implement real-time validation to provide immediate feedback on user input, helping users correct errors as they type.
  6. Responsive Design: Ensure text areas are responsive and function well across different devices and screen sizes.

Tools for Creating and Managing Text Areas

  1. Design Software: Tools like Sketch, Adobe XD, and Figma allow designers to create and prototype text areas within their designs.
  2. Front-End Frameworks: Frameworks like Bootstrap and Material-UI provide pre-designed text area components that can be easily customized and integrated.
  3. Accessibility Tools: Use tools like Axe, WAVE, and Lighthouse to test the accessibility of text areas and ensure they meet necessary standards.
  4. JavaScript Libraries: Libraries like React and Vue.js offer components and plugins for creating dynamic and interactive text areas.
  5. Form Validation Tools: Tools like Formik and Yup can help implement and manage validation rules for text areas, ensuring proper input from users.

Real-World Examples

  1. Contact Forms: Many websites use text areas in contact forms to allow users to enter detailed messages or inquiries, providing ample space for comprehensive communication.
  2. Comment Sections: Platforms like YouTube and blog sites use text areas in comment sections, enabling users to leave detailed feedback and engage in discussions.
  3. Messaging Apps: Applications like WhatsApp and Slack use text areas in their messaging interfaces, allowing users to type and edit multi-line messages.
  4. Content Management Systems: Tools like WordPress use text areas in their content editors, enabling users to write and format articles, posts, and pages.
  5. Feedback Forms: E-commerce sites like Amazon use text areas in their feedback forms, allowing users to provide detailed reviews and feedback on products and services.


Text areas are a crucial element in UX design, providing users with the flexibility to enter and edit multi-line text. By following best practices and leveraging the right tools, designers can create effective, user-friendly text areas that enhance usability, accessibility, and overall user experience. Properly designed text areas ensure that users can comfortably and efficiently communicate and interact with a product or service.

Ondrej Zoricak
Ondrej Zoricak