When you see a Submit button on a form, what comes to your mind? One could easily reason that clicking the button submits the user’s information into the system for processing. A Submit button describes what the system does well, but it doesn’t describe what the user does at all.
When users fill out a form, they are engaging in a task. The action button should affirm what that task is, so that users know exactly what happens when they click that button. A button that describes the user’s task tells users that the form focuses on carrying out that specific task. The more focused your form is, the more likely you’ll get users to complete your form.
I admit to using the word ‘Submit‘ on buttons frequently, and I’ve never really given it much thought until reading this post. The main point that the author is making is that ‘Submit’ is a vague term–It doesn’t really let the user know what will happen when that button is clicked. I only “sort of” agree. It is vague, true, but it is short and, assuming the form is straightforward, it is to the point. ‘Submit’ is a term that has been used for many years now and I really believe that even the most basic computer users are very well trained by now to understand what it means to click a submit button.
In general its probably a very good idea to attempt to make a button label say something that is descriptive (and the post gives some conveniently short examples). There are other times, however, where descriptive text is just too long to fit on a clean looking button, and submit is probably just fine.