Should links open in a new window?

Dec 11, 2014

Hey folks,

Just wanted to throw a usability question out to the masses since it has become a subject of debate between a couple of us.

When you click on link on a webpage, do you prefer that it:

A) Opens in a new tab

B) Opens in a new window

c) Opens in the existing tab


Personally, I prefer that links open in a new tab, because I don't want to lose the original page. 

Looking forward to hearing your opinions!


34 Replies
Linda Nelson

This is an old post, but it has become very relevant to me lately. I'm developing systems training, Test-out for learners. Normally, with Systems test questions, I open screenshots in a new window, but an SME asked me to open the image with a toggle button in the same page. What are folks thoughts on that?  What is better for learners in your experience?

In other words, my learner gets a test question and needs the screenshot for reference to answer the question.

In your experience developing these kinds of learning experiences, what is best for the learner when providing  Systems screenshot references for answering questions:

1. A screen shot opening in a new window


2. A screenshot opening in the same window with instructions to use the toggle button to turn it on and off. Naturally, the image would be in the off state at first.