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Social Media Users Prefer Social Login Over Traditional


More than three-quarters (77%) of social media users say websites should offer social login—i.e., using a social media identity to log in at a website—as an alternative to traditional account creation or logging in as a guest, up from the 66% who said so a year earlier, according to a study by Janrain.

When required to register or create a new account at a website, only 14% of social media users say they complete the registration, whereas 54% say they’re likely to leave the site and not return; 26% go to a different site if possible, and 6% say they leave or avoid the site altogether:

Below, additional findings from Janrain's new study, which explores consumers' perceptions of online registration and social login.

Leaving False Information

Many socially networked consumers leave false information when asked to register: 88% admit to having given incorrect information or leaving forms incomplete when creating a new account on a website, up from 76% who said so a year earlier.

Preferences for Social Login

Among the various options presented for gaining access to a website, social login is preferred most: 41% of social media users use websites via social login, 35% create a new account and sign on, and 24% use a guest account to sign on.

Fans of Social Login Are Valuable Customers

Consumers who are interested in social login are more likely to influence and be influenced by their social networks.

Among "social logins fans," those who say social login is a good alternative to registering online: 

  • 83% would consider buying based on positive comments or messages from a social network, compared with 64% of "critics" of social sign-in who say the same.
  • 69% of would be more likely to purchase an item if they read positive reviews found on a social network, compared with 54% of critics who say the same.
  • 82% are more likely to seek out or avoid a brand based on reviews found on a social network, compared with 65% of critics who say the same.
  • 78% say they share information about products and services they like or believe other should know about on social networks, compared with 54% of critics who say the same. 

Personalizing Site Experiences 

With social login, consumers are given the choice to have a more personalized experience when they visit a website without needing to re-enter preferences.

Social media users were asked to rate the attractiveness of that capability on a scale of one to ten: 51% rated the capability highly (7-10), whereas 25% were neutral (5-6) and 24% said the capability to personalize was not attractive (1-4).

Roughly one-half of social media users said they would be more likely to return to sites that offer a personalized experience, and 46% said they would be more likely to buy from sites that offered such an experience.

About the data: Findings are based on a survey of 619 active social media users who had purchased a product or service online in the past 30 days and/or read articles or watched videos online from major media outlets in the previous 30 days. The research was prepared for Janrain by Kelsey Goings and Paul Abel, PhD, of Blue Research, October 3-9, 2011.

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  • by Jean Thu Feb 9, 2012 via web

    Text in account creation paragraph ''...35% opt for a guest account, and 24% sign on with a new account.'' does not match what the graphic says?

  • by Vahe, MarketingProfs Thu Feb 9, 2012 via web

    You're right, Jean. It's corrected now.

  • by Scott Thu Feb 9, 2012 via web

    When using a Social login, how much personal information from FaceBook for example, is available to the specific website?

  • by Dorothy Fri Feb 10, 2012 via web

    I'd love to see something similar for b2b sites - do business customers prefer this method of login now too?

  • by Vahe, MarketingProfs Fri Feb 10, 2012 via web

    Hi, Scott.

    The short answer to your question seems to be... "it depends": on the social network in question, and on the user's privacy settings.

    See more here (courtesy of our CTO):

  • by Scott Fri Feb 10, 2012 via web

    Thanks Vahe! And please thank your CTO for me. That was exactly the information that I have always been curious about.

  • by Cristina Tue Mar 20, 2012 via web

    I struggled with whether or not to add a social log in to my website. In the end I opted not to because:

    1. According to my developers, FB makes changes to their api constantly and this would be an ongoing development activity and costly
    2. The open graph information FB provides via the social login probably won't be free much longer and small companies could get stuck paying a hefty toll. The WSJ had an interesting article about this coming out of SXSW - VCs see that the majority of new companies present were opting NOT to offer the social log in for FB to avoid getting caught with unexpected costs.

  • by Madhu Wed Apr 25, 2012 via web

    How about using these plug-in instead of web forms? in the case of accessing a collateral resource

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