Frictionless user onboarding
Skip the sign up to guide new users to the "aha moment" sooner (with examples)
Isn't it awesome when you come across a product that lets you progress beyond the landing page without having to sign up? Even though adding your email and creating a password doesn't seem like much work, it always feels great to not have to do.
At this point you might be agreeing, but thinking it could never work for your product.
While that may be the case, it's worth seriously considering whether you could defer the ask until after your product has delivered some value.
Skipping the sign up could work well for you if:
You truly understand what most people are trying to achieve when they discover your product
There isn't much education required for your new users to get to the magical "aha moment" with your product
If you can make it work, your users will love you for it. In theory, it also filters out people who aren't a good fit, which should reduce churn and support requests.
The following examples give you an idea of how this approach could work. As always, it's important to start with your user's goals in mind.
Carrd - a simple web page builder
The user's goal here is fairly clear: They want to create a web page.
With so many options, I imagine people like to try out three or four web page builders before picking a winner. What a treat it must be to come across one that lets you get as far as the publishing step before asking you to create an account.
You get to experience the full page building process without making any commitments. If it feels unintuitive, you can quickly move on to the next option. If you get to the "publish" step with ease, chances are you're going to want to sign up.
Deliveroo - a food delivery app
The user's goal here is to discover which nearby restaurants they could order from, then make an order if they find something they like.
As a user, the first thing I want to know is whether there's a decent selection in the area. Being able to find that out without signing up is ideal.
TikTok - a social video app
Most people on TikTok are there to find entertaining videos
Unlike most social apps (Instagram, for example) TikTok lets you get right into the action without signing up. You're only asked to create an account when you try interact in some way, like following a creator or commenting on a video.
People also go to TikTok to create videos (and become famous)
Even for these users, TikTok lets you get right to the point where you want to publish your video before asking you to sign up.
Hopefully these examples give you a sense of how this type of user onboarding approach could work for you.
If you decide you still need to ask users to create an account, it's always worth re-visiting your flow and thinking through where you can defer points of friction.
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