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Ning Case Study

Ning is the world’s largest platform for creating social websites. Top organizers, marketers, influencers, and activists use Ning to create an online destination that weaves social conversations in content and inspire action. Based in Palo Alto, California, Ning makes it easy for brands of all shapes and sizes to build custom and powerful social websites.

andrea bocelli

Results Overview

Ning, the world’s largest platform for community websites, sees huge increases in sign up conversion rates across thousands of sites with Janrain for social login.

  • Websites that have enabled the Janrain social login feature experienced a 37% increase in sign up rates.
  • Taking advantage of Janrain’s Partner API, tens of thousands of Ning communities instantly activated the social login feature when it became available.

The Challenge

As the world’s largest community platform, Ning provides tools and services to create social community websites for brands like Linkin Park, Whole Living Magazine, and the National Peace Corp Association. Ning’s initial process for community member sign up involved registering for a unique Ning account with a traditional site-specific user name and password process.

Recognizing high registration drop off rates, Ning wanted to make it easier for its sites to grow membership and build a connection to the social web of its users. Given this challenge, Ning searched for a social login solution to offer their community platform in a way that was reliable, customizable, flexible and affordable.

The Solution

After extensive due diligence on solutions available in the market, Ning selected Janrain’s Customer Identity Management platform. Janrain provides Ning websites the ability to customize the look and feel of their social login widget to match the specific community’s branding requirements, as well as customize providers based on the target audience for the site. On future visits to the site, Janrain remembers the member’s preferred provider to enable a single- click return experience.

Ning considered building a social login platform themselves, but determined “it didn’t make sense to recreate the wheel since Janrain already built it” said Evan Goldin Ning Product Manager, “We had experience with supporting a Facebook sharing feature and the maintenance was significant. Multiple times Facebook changed their API without notice and broke our feature which required significant work to correct.”

“The ability to offer a customized social login experience, rather than a generic form for our communities was a critical element of our decision. It was also evident that Janrain had the deep relationships with Facebook, Google, Microsoft and other providers that we knew would provide the reliability, service levels, and continual feature enhancements that we need to pass along to our communities”, said Nick Barr, Ning Product Manager.

Using Janrain’s Partner API, the social login feature was adopted and deployed to thousands of Ning sites within the first two weeks of going live and is now on 36% of the community sites, with hundreds more deploying it daily. “Deployment was simple and exceeded our expectations. Community owners can now offer social login with just one click”, Goldin mentioned when describing the integration process.

Benefits of Janrain’s Partner API

Ning’s development team has reported a smooth and pleasant implementation due to strong documentation and outstanding communication with the Janrain team.

Janrain’s Partner API allowed Ning to integrate once, and extend all the rich capabilities of social login to the community platform.

“Authentication can be tricky for many reasons, but not with Janrain.”, mentioned Barr. “We were pleasantly surprised with the ease and speed of implementation, as well as the ongoing support they’ve provided.”

"Janrain has enabled Ning to remove a friction point for users, increasing the opportunity for Ning creators to widen the base of their most active members which in return lifts the quality of site traffic. This new integration is an essential building block of the Ning platform experience, making the authentication process seamless for our user base."

Jason Rosenthal
CEO, Ning

About Ning

Ning is the world’s largest platform for creating social websites. Top organizers, marketers, influencers and activists use Ning to create an online destination that weaves social conversations in content and inspire action. Based in Palo Alto, California, Ning makes it easy for brands of all shapes and sizes to build custom and powerful social websites.

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