Better UX for Opening External URLs

I like the idea of having a url type, but wish we could either make the URL field more user friendly or leverage the button field to open links.

So, the idea is that we might have external documentation or an external page of some kind to reference. As-is, the URL field shows the beginning of the URL, you can click it and it’ll open. However, I think it would be more polished looking if we could make that link look more like a button, and provide some alternate text.

Currently, this is what it looks like:

What I’d like for it to look like (I don’t see how current action button can open a link):

An extension of this request would be to customize the button display further:

  • Support a button that just shows an icon
  • Support switching the button style between an outline button and a solid button (so you could have a primary button and a secondary button)

It is possible to use an emoji for the button field name (and therefore the appearance of the button).
And if you didn’t know, on Windows, holding down the Windows button and pressing period/fullstop brings up a jump list of emojis. Some of them aren’t supported, but plenty are, e.g. :x::white_check_mark::grey_question:

Obviously doesn’t solve the second part of your problem :-/

A post was split to a new topic: Rich text URL links should open on click

This has just popped up, so my thoughts!

  1. Sometimes it is useful to see the URL, and sometimes the text is more applicable.
  2. Perhaps a link should represent a name and a url
  3. And perhaps it could be rendered if a few different ways

From a user experience point of view, the behaviour and usage of a link and a button is consciously different. E.g. a button causes an action that has an effect, and a link causes navigation which has no side effect.


Button => Trigger SMS Notification (side effect is the SMS)
Link => View Corporate Website (no side effect)

In the context of within Fibery, the mere action of navigating outside of Fibery might be seen as the side-effect and thus the button could make perfect sense for your use-case. Or perhaps any external links should be prefixed with an icon that signifies external navigation.

Taking it a step further there is the potential to render the same information in different ways, e.g. as a link or a button. Something I would love to see in Fibery in the future, would be an ability to bring your own property editors (dream).

An example is this link component, being rendered in 3 different ways:


Anyway! A few ideas :slight_smile:


I actually like the option of rendering links as buttons and hope that eventually we will have this option.

However, one the things that might be a bit more straightforward to implement might be to provide a text alias. I described it in this request, which is based on Excel’s HYPERLINK function could be overridden with a simple text alias.

I find this very helpful for really long URLs, particularly anything generated by formulas. URL encoding things and building outside tools has been one of the ways I get around some of fibery’s limitations. Having an option like this would greatly enhance the look and function of the link formulas for me.

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I agree that link text would be a nice intermediate solution. Otherwise you just see the domain, which might be the same over and over again

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Sorry to revive this old thread but this has been a constant pain point for me as we are trying to integrate fibery with our other systems. We want to be able to allow users to access other systems through links that bring up the exact information they need and passing URL parameters through formula generated hyperlinks is one of the best ways of doing this. However, the very long hyperlinks are just confusing users. A simple text alias or button rendering option would really clean-up the interface a lot and make integrating fibery alongside other systems that much easier.

Seconding this as well! I don’t know a lot about product development, but for us the benefit of something like this is massive - being able to trigger webhooks and open mailto/sms/phone links via button increases power by a LOT.

It is possible to do a lot of stuff using scripts in a button automation. Have you considered/tried that?

If you use the email field type, it should automatically open your default mail client when you click on the address.
And similarly with the phone field (should open any default phone app).

I think the specific examples for simple emails or phone numbers work great as it is likely actually helpful to see the email address or phone number you are clicking. However, when you are dealing with longer URLs, that is when having the option for an alias or to render the link as a button would be very helpful and reduce clutter.

A simple example I can offer is creating Google Maps links from location fields (to show location on Google Maps or on Street View):

I don’t see a good reason for the user to see the long URL. In fact it would likely be much easier for them to understand the link if there was a descriptive text/button (“Map View” or “Street View”). I have at least 10 other situations where we are trying to pass a user to another system through URL parameters and while it works, it is definitely not user friendly.

I think it would be difficult to do this for hyperlink input fields (i.e. where a user inputs the URL). However, I’m hoping this is relatively easy to do for formula fields where the Field Type is set to URL:


Yeah, the link is more often than not useless because the differentiator is going to be cut off in the ui most of the time. has a really good implementation worth taking a look at, where the link has formatting options, but you can also combine the link/url field with a button for a more custom presentation.

Display options


Or, add a button column, and choose open hyperlink. Plus, you can dynamically set the button text via a formula.

You can even use a formula to set the button text and whether the button is enabled or not.


@rothnic Thanks for sharing. That is a really nice implementation! It would be great if fibery could have something similar.

I know the button field/column type was eliminated in favour having Actions (which makes sense for batch processing). However, it would be nice if a button/action could perform actions like opening a new URL. It would be amazing if opening URLs could actually be a step in an action!

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It is a very flexible and practical solution that has been well thought out for sure. However, with my product manager hat on, I would definitely settle for your proposed alias solution. A small stretch to the fixed alias would be to have the alias/linked text be a formula field or reference another field.

Here is a little use case for why the dynamic alias/linked text would be helpful. Imagine we have synced contacts from hubspot, but want to provide a link out to the related Company record within hubspot. With a fixed alias, you might need to show two fields, the company name and the link that might say Open Company in Hubspot. With a dynamic alias, you could show the single field with the company name, which would both tell you what the name is, but would also take you to the external record.

This issue would be compounded if you have multiple external things you want to link to from a single record within fibery.


The current automation actions effectively make changes in the ‘backend’ (update things, link things, create things etc.) which may or may not be immediately apparent on the UI of any given user (it depends on what they are viewing).
I think it will be some significant work to alter that paradigm, in order to allow that an action affects the navigation (for a specific user) on the UI.

Indeed, Coda have some amazing stuff, including some very sophisticated formula-driven functionality. Hats off to them.
Have no idea if/when Fibery will ever catch up in that area.


The coda implementation looks great!

I don’t have high hopes for the formula part. But I do hope that the 4 developers that will work on simplification, polishing etc. in until December will also have a look at the low hanging fruits to have a better UX in Fibery overall.

For me the alt + click is also not working well to open an entity (caused by my pen tablet which I use instead of a mouse). Would be awesome if you could also open the entity via right click.

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