UX • IxD
Account Kit is a complementary SDK, created by Facebook, that enables users to sign up or login using just their phone number; no password necessary.
In the Spring of 2016, Smule noticed a steady drop in registration rates of our flagship app Sing! Karaoke. Since the registration experience is shared throughout our suite of apps, there was concern that the same decline would soon appear elsewhere.
Because the most significant drop in registration rates were in Southeast Asia, primarily in countries with low adoption rates for email, we believed the primary confounding factor to be the lack of ideal methods of registration. Account Kit provided an opportunity for us to address this, while also increasing user integrity by adding an additional verification step.
UX & IxD Pou Dimitrijevich • Product Manager Andrea Slobodien • Visual Design Hanna Mejia
Outdated visual design.
Lack of design parity between platforms and within the current experience.
Dark patterns and bad UX.
App launch time.
Account Kit was released in the Spring of 2016. Because it was still fairly new, it had only been adopted by a handful of apps, leaving me with little to no points of reference. To understand the value of phone number registration, I looked to apps that had built their own SDK.
Many apps that ask for a user's phone number, use it as a method of authentication and account recovery. Rarely do they rely on it as the sole form of login.
Most of the same app’s still require users to enter in a username, password or email.
Multiple user id’s associated to a single phone number is a problem that many of these apps are running into.
There were usability concerns around featuring more than 3 call-to-actions. To test this, I ran a small usability test to see if hiding email 'sign up/log in' behind a text link would create a better experience. Additionally, I was curious if this design (A), would encourage users to sign up with an alternative registration method. The metric I used to measure the quality of UX , was time–how much time did it take for the user to make a selection.
Much to my surprise, users were not bothered by the amount of CTAs on the screen. In fact, they appreciated the variety of registration methods. Nor were users encouraged to sign up with an alternative registration method when the email 'signup/log in' was hidden. Users also took an equal amount of time selecting a registration method, despite the design. This lead me to believe that the quality of UX, in this experience, isn't measured in speed, but in completion rate. All users opted to register because they found a registration method that worked for them. The more variety, the higher the completion rate.
Account Kit throughput was 68%. This was higher than Facebook and almost as high as Google. Impressive given that Account Kit required more steps than FB, and a two-factor authentication.
There was a slight increase in app launch time, but nothing significant enough to roll back.
Email throughput only drop slightly (1.5%) this we can attribute to the change in UX.
India was our #2 country for phone number login. This was surprising considering India's mobile phone/100 citizens rate is only ~81, and they make up a smaller share of our audience than the U.S. and Malaysia.
Indonesia by far was the top country to register with account kit.
The initial design's failed to account for email newsletter opt-in. In most countries outside the U.S. it is mandatory that users are shown a check box to opt-in or out of email campaigns. A separate ticket was filed to address this.
Given our time constraint (ASAP), resources, and aversion to increasing app launch time, Design's primary goal was very straightforward: Seamlessly integrate Account Kit into both the client and web platform, without negatively affecting current registration rates. If I had an opportunity and flexibility to iterate on this first pass, here are some initiative's I'd like to take on:
Inline username check for format and uniqueness.
Intelligent username generation for user’s you sign up with Phone Number.
Welcome Email (No Verification) – use this opportunity to encourage user participation, engagement and exploration
Account Kit for Email - We will no longer need the 'Forgot Password' flow or 'Is this you?' dialogue.
Revisit copy and screenshots. Provide a more engaging experience.
Introduce moments of 'delight' with transitions and animations
Improve when and where permission and error dialogues appear.
Allow users to edit their phone number in their Settings.