Thursday 15 October 2015

The future of customer registration

In the ideal world, every marketer wants its website visitors to opt registration in order to open up the potential to build a long term relationship with them. Collecting precious customer data is the main part of every marketing plan and customer registration process is an effective way to do that.  However, in the past few years the process of customer registration has completely changed. In this article I am going to guide you through the future of customer registration. But before that, let’s find out what people think about customer registration, both from customer point of view as well as marketer point of view!

From customer point of view, customer registration is :

“I would rather be anonymous user!”
“Even if I register, let me provide them my fake email id and other information. Afterall how can I trust them with my personal data when I hardly know them.”

“Why should I provide them all my information? What’s in it for me? Today they are asking for email, tomorrow they might ask for my address, my phone number or one day they might even ask what is the name of my pet! I mean who has got time for that?”

“Oh registration! So they might make me create another site specific username and password to memorize! Sorry but I think, I’ll pass!!”

Contrary to that, here is what customer registration means for businesses :

“Let us ask them as much information as we can so that we can sell them our products, send email newsletters,  make calls and build a long term relationships with them!”

Though customer registration is beneficial for both the customers as well as businesses, customers perceive it nothing more than a barrier. From captchas, to another set of password to confirmation mails, customer registration has become more often or not, a headache for online users. So here is my guide to what customer registration service used to be like, how it has become a headache for online users and what the future of customer registration holds for us!

Back to the Past :

Traditional registration forms.jpg

Long before, the process of customer registration was non existent. The content used to be freely available to use. But with the concept of monitoring and analyzing traffic coming into picture, businesses started to experience the need to identify their visitors. Customer registration forms helped them with it. But with registration forms, came numerous fields, countless questions and hectic CAPTCHAs. Some of the most common questions asked were :

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Email ID
  • Address
  • Company Name
  • Company Address
  • Designation
  • Company Website
  • and more!

Complicated registration process.jpg

Answering this questions before performing certain action is a war in itself. Apart from that, many websites made the process more lengthy by adding the process of account activation by clicking on confirmation mail.

Due the lack of technology back then, customizing registration forms was not an option. But gradually, marketers started to understand the consequences of forcing a time consuming registration process on users though it didn’t happen overnight but marketers were getting smarter and so were online users!

Customer Registration in the present :

Customer registration has evolved a lot from what it used to be like a couple of years ago. The problem of poor user experience led by lengthy registration process forced businesses to provide audience the choice between traditional registration process, social sign in or even both.

social login with traditional registration.png

With the advent of social media, social login came into existence that let visitors authenticate themselves using their existing social identities. This made the whole process a lot convenient and quick. Registration forms are also very customized now, only the necessary questions are asked and the choice is provided between social login and traditional registration process in order to offer flexibility. This not only boosts user experience on the website but also provides genuine customer data. It would not be wrong, if I say, social media has become an important part of customer registration service.

The future of customer registration :

I am not an astrologer or something like that to predict the future of customer registration though it is sure that the whole registration process is getting more inclined towards user experience. Online users are getting smarter, marketers are getting wiser and the registration process is getting better. With the sensitiveness of customer profile data, the registration process will become more secure, convenient and definitely, more promising!! So keep testing, keep optimizing until you create a highly convenient and promising registration process for your visitors!!

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