Welcome to Buttons, a new tool for organising and sharing websites you love or find useful.

You can:

Buttons is based on an earlier tool called Internet Buttons released in 2010, which has been adapted based on extensive user feedback.

Buttons is currently a beta site, meaning we are still iterating and improving it. If you have any feedback, please email hello@shiftdesign.org.uk. We appreciate your help in making the tool better.

What is 'Buttons'?

Buttons is a free web tool that can be used to curate the internet. The internet can be overwhelming and recommendations, from friends, family or experts, can be really valuable.

Buttons allows users to save their favourite sites for future reference, or to share them with others.

How does Buttons help digital inclusion?

Giving people who are unconfident online a simple set of websites they can trust can overcome one of the main barriers for using the internet. It provides motivation to go online, by linking to sites that are of particular interest to the individual, and removes the fear of not knowing where to start and which sites are reputable.

The tool is being used by:

  • Individuals - Those comfortable online helping friends and family who are less confident.
  • IT teachers - Those working in learning environments introducing students to new sites.
  • Organisations - Those wanting to direct their users to a series of online information sources or tasks, simplifying digital processes.

Beyond those wanting to increase digital capabilities, people who simply want to share lists of sites are using Buttons - whether they are recommending their favourite restaurants to friends, sharing a reading list with colleagues or collating useful videos for their own research.

Buttons is an improved version of Internet Buttons, which won a Tech4GoodAward and has been adapted based on user feedback and testing with The Tinder Foundation and Eon.

What are our users saying?

“[Buttons is useful] for clients with sight problems who have problems using the favourites toolbar” - Tutor, UK Online Centre

“I would like to use [Buttons] as an information point. For example one of my learners designed a set around free resources for a new computer” - Tutor, UK Online Centre

“With the more frequent clients we could assist them in setting up Buttons particularly for jobsearch, accessing benefits info etc” - Tutor, UK Online Centre

How do you create a set of Buttons?

It’s really easy.

Just click on the big red 'B' on the homepage to get started. Type a title for your set of Buttons and you can add a description, if you like. Click ‘Save’.

You can then start adding Buttons to your set. Click the big grey ‘+’ icon. Enter the web address, give your Button a title and you can add a description, if you like. You can either select one of the automatically generated images to appear on your Button or you can upload your own. When you’re ready, click ‘Save’.

You will then see the Button on your page. You can continue this process to add more Buttons.

Do I have to register?

You don’t have to register right away so you can play around with the tool for a while to see if you like it.

If you want to save your Buttons for future use, just click on ‘Register’ at the top of the set of Buttons and you can choose a username and password so that you can come back to your Buttons later.

Can I use my own photos for my Buttons?

Yes. You can either pick one of the images suggested, or upload your own. You are given these options when you add a new Button.

What form of the URL do I use to create a Button?

For each Button, type in (or copy and paste from the browser) the web address, e.g. http://www.bbc.co.uk. If you miss out the “http://” or” https://” or “www.” it shouldn’t matter.

How can I change how my list of Buttons appears?

There are three ways to view your Buttons. As:

  • a grid of images
  • a grid of images with title
  • a list of images with title and description

Click between the three small grey icons at the top right hand corner of your Button set to swap between them.

How can I see the description I have added to my Buttons?

There are three ways to view your Buttons (see question above). Swap to a list of images with title and description visible by clicking on the last small grey icon in the top right hand corner of your set of Buttons.

Where can I edit my Buttons?

Once you have registered and have created a set of Buttons, you can edit them at any time by logging in. When you log in you will land on your profile page which lists the sets of Buttons you have created. Click on the pencil icon to edit any of your Buttons or sets of Buttons.

Can I change the size of my Buttons?

Yes. If you want your Buttons to be bigger, you can zoom in, and if you want to see more of your Buttons on a page, you can zoom out. Click ‘Zoom in’ or ‘Zoom out’ under the ‘View’ menu of your browser, or use the keyboard shortcut: control +/- (on a PC) and Cmd +/- (on a Mac).

Can I make more than one set of Buttons?

You can make as many sets of Buttons as you like. If you have registered and are logged in, whenever you create a new set of Buttons, it will appear on your profile page.

Can I add a photo to my profile?

Yes you can. Click on Profile in the top right and then click Edit.

Do I have to log in to see my Buttons?

Nope. If you know the web address of your Buttons, you can view them and use them without logging in. You have to be logged in to edit them.

Can anyone see my Buttons?

Yes, they’re not private.

How can I share my Buttons with others?

Simply click the “share” icon in the top right hand corner of a set of Buttons. You can select whichever social network you want, or share it via email.

Can I set my Buttons as my browser home page?

Yes you can. Instructions are different for each browser.

If you are using Chrome: Click the menu icon to the right of the address bar and select ‘Settings’. Once there, make sure the ‘Show Home button’ box is ticked. Then click ‘Change’ and enter your Buttons web address.

If you are using Firefox: Open up your Buttons page. Drag the tab to the Home icon to the right of the address bar. Click ‘Yes’ to save.

If you are using Internet Explorer: Go to the page you would like to set as your home screen. Point to the bottom-right corner of the screen using your mouse, move the mouse pointer up, then click Settings. Click Options > Homepage > Customise. Click ‘Add current site’ and then click ‘Add’ when you are ready to save.

If you are using Safari: Select ‘Preferences’ from the ‘Safari’ menu. Add the web address to the Homepage field. Change ‘New windows open with’ and ‘New tabs open with’ to Homepage.

Can I use Buttons on a tablet or touch screen device?

Yes, Buttons is available on most mobile devices.

Who created Buttons?

Buttons was created by the not-for-profit company, Shift, formerly We Are What We Do.

71 St John Street
London, EC1M 4NJ
020 7148 7666


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