Writing user-friendly error messages

Custom error messages can be written when custom regex, code hooks, or webhooks are used.

A user's ability to correct errors is only as good as the direction given. No one likes to see confusing, non-descriptive pop-ups such as: Error: bad data, Internal server error, or Improper formatting.

To ensure users performing imports understand how to resolve erroneous data, keep the following in mind when writing error messages:

  1. Be clear about why their data is not correct and how they can correct it. Incorrect date tells the user what went wrong, while Date must be in the format YYYY-MM-DD tells the user something is wrong and how to resolve the issue.
  2. Use phrases everyone can understand. Date must be in the format YYYY-MM-DD is much easier to work with than Error 602.
  3. Keep it short. It's more likely a user will read the entire message and understand the issue if over-communication and redundancies are avoided.
  4. Avoid negativity. Don't blame the user for the issue with phrases like You didn't enter a valid date. Replace negativity with direction such as Please write dates in YYYY-MM-DD format.
  5. Avoid the caps. DO YOU LIKE BEING YELLED AT? Caps are hard to read and give the impression of shouting. Stick with proper sentence capitalization.