By Sue Brady
You’ve seen others use the social sign-in option on their website, but do you use it yourself? It’s worth a try, depending on the type of site you are managing. There are benefits to both companies and users.
First a definition. Social sign-in refers to the use of a social networking site like Facebook or LinkedIn to allow a consumer to log-in to your site. In a survey by Gigya, they found that over 65% of respondents said they use social sign-on always or often. Here’s an example from the Forbes website:
In just the past couple of years, consumer use of social log-in shot up from roughly 55% in 2012 to 77% in 2014 (source = 2014 Gigya survey). The real benefit to the consumer is convenience. Logging in using validation from an already existing social media account means the user doesn’t have to create another user name and password, doesn’t have to remember another user name and password, and can get on with the site they were interested in visiting, faster.
And consumers aren’t the only beneficiaries of this process. Websites (aka your brand) also benefit. Why? A few reasons, but one big one:
For marketers, social sign-in helps with data accuracy. At a minimum, you’ll get a valid email address. A solid percent of people lie on web forms. This is a B2B and B2C phenomena. A few years ago Marketing Sherpa published a study on this topic and found that of the respondents, over 60% sometimes, rarely, or never provided a valid phone number, over 30% sometimes, rarely, or never provided a valid email address, and over 25% didn’t even always provide their real name!
Because logging onto a website in this way is fast for the consumer, more of them actually do log in, as opposed to bailing out during the completion of a website registration.
Demographic and other information is now available to the marketer, with permission, from the consumer. Here’s a sample of what you might be able to see:
What’s the most used social site consumers choose for this purpose? No surprise here: Facebook. Close to 60% of the time, Facebook is the method of choice for social sign-on. Google+ is around 25% and Yahoo, Twitter, and LinkedIn make up most of the rest. Results look similar on mobile devices.
What’s the moral of the story: Social sign-in is increasingly being adopted by consumers, the majority of whom prefer this method. That means you should think about it for your website (note that banking and health sites tend NOT to use this method due to consumer privacy concerns).