Research Study: Consumer Perceptions of Online Registration and Social Sign-in

In December 2010 Blue Research, a top market research firm used by tech companies like Microsoft, Intel and Logitech, conducted a survey on US consumer attitudes about site registration processes, effects on behavior, perceptions about signing up with a social identity, and overall impact on a brand.

Some of the results from the nationally representative sample of over 600 consumers weren’t too surprising – 75% are bothered by website registrations and will change their behavior as a result, including leaving the site altogether. 76% admit to having provided incorrect or incomplete information.

A clear majority – 66% see social sign-in, accessing a site by using their Facebook, Google, Twitter, or other account, as an attractive alternative.

The survey shows stark behavior differences between the respondents favoring social sign-in (“fans”) and those who prefer traditional methods (“critics”).

  • 21% of the social sign-in fans planned to spend more money during the 2010 holiday season, compared to only 16% of the critics
  • 39% of the social sign-in fans planned to do more of their shopping online than last year, compared to only 25% of the critics
  • 25% of the social sign-in fans use social networks to influence others or make purchase decisions, compared to only 13% of the critics
  • 35% of the social sign-in fans admit to making a purchase based on a positive social network post, compared to only 16% of the critics

Consumers inclined to use social sign-in are more valuable to companies; they are more likely to return to sites offering social sign-in, they spend larger dollar amounts on the site and have more favorable views about the brand.

It is apparent that a shift is underway – one that has significant implications for brands and retailers. Consumers are clearly frustrated by traditional registration processes, and yet they are doing more online, including spending more dollars.  Harnessing the social networks of users to improve the sign-up process, generate word of mouth marketing, and reach influencers is a win for both consumers and brands.

We are happy to share the full results of the survey with you.