Fitts's Law and UX Design From Clicks to Conversions

Craig Barber
September 13, 2023
mins read

In the realm of user experience (UX) design, there’s a fundamental principle that has stood the test of time: Fitts’s Law.

Named after Paul Fitts, an American psychologist, this law has had a profound impact on designing intuitive and efficient interfaces.

By understanding Fitts’s Law and its practical applications, designers can create seamless user experiences that effortlessly guide users towards their goals.

So, let’s delve into the world of Fitts’s Law and discover how it relates to modern UX design.

What is Fitts's Law?

What is Fitts's Law

Fitts’s Law is a mathematical model that predicts the time it takes to move from one point to another with a pointing device.

The law emphasises two primary factors:

the size of the target and the distance to the target.

According to Fitts’s Law, the time required to reach a target is inversely proportional to its size and directly proportional to the distance to it.

Fitts's Law Explainer Video:

3 Ways Fitts's Law Influences Digital Product Design:

1. Responsive Design

Fitts’s Law encourages designers to adapt their interfaces to different devices and screen sizes.

By considering the varying dimensions of screens and input methods, designers can ensure that targets remain accessible and comfortable for users across different devices, including smartphones, tablets, and desktops.

2. Gestures and Touch Interfaces

With the rise of touch interfaces, Fitts’s Law has become even more relevant.

Designers must carefully consider the size and placement of touch targets, such as buttons and interactive elements, to accommodate users’ finger movements.

Adhering to Fitts’s Law ensures that users can effortlessly navigate through interfaces, minimising frustration and enhancing engagement.

3. Accessibility

Fitts’s Law aligns with the principles of accessibility, ensuring that interfaces are usable by individuals with diverse abilities.

By making targets larger, designers facilitate interactions for users with motor impairments or those using assistive technologies.

This inclusivity creates a positive user experience for everyone, regardless of their abilities.

3 Examples of Fitts's Law in Digital Product Design:

1. Smartphone App Icons

Smartphone App Icons​
Apple's icons are large and easy to access with your finger

Take a moment to look at your smartphone’s home screen.

Notice that the icons for apps are large and easy to access with your fingers.

This design choice adheres to Fitts’s Law.

By increasing the size of these icons and positioning them near the edges, it becomes easier for users to quickly locate and tap the desired app, reducing errors and enhancing the overall user experience.

2. Navigation Menus

Navigation Menus​
Make navigation large and easy to access with fingers or mouse

Websites and applications feature navigation menus, often located at the top or left side of the screen.

These menus frequently contain important links or sections that users need to access.

By employing Fitts’s Law, designers can make the clickable areas of menu items larger and position them closer together.

This approach improves the ease of navigation and reduces the risk of misclicks.

3. Call-to-Action Buttons

Call-to-Action Buttons​

Call-to-action (CTA) buttons are crucial for guiding users towards desired actions, such as signing up, making a purchase, or submitting a form.

Fitts’s Law suggests that designers should make these buttons large and position them strategically within the user’s field of view.

By doing so, designers reduce the effort required for users to locate and click the button, resulting in a smoother and more enjoyable user journey.


Fitts’s Law remains a cornerstone of UX design, providing valuable insights into creating intuitive and efficient user interfaces.

By considering the size and distance of targets, designers can optimise user experiences, enhance engagement, and reduce errors.

As technology evolves and user expectations change, Fitts’s Law continues to guide designers in crafting interfaces that seamlessly connect users with their digital journeys.

So, the next time you’re designing an interface, remember the principles of Fitts’s Law and empower your users with intuitive interactions.

Want more laws of UX? Check out our post here on the 9 laws of UX design.

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