Accounting for roughly two thirds of all social logins, Facebook is the undoubted king of the social sign in – blowing the closest competitor (Google+ with a 22% market share) out of the water. A huge number of applications and online tools offer sign in via Facebook, with users gratefully using services without having to create a whole new account.
But why is Facebook head and shoulders above the competition, beating the likes of Google+, Twitter and Yahoo! into the dust?
Sheer number of users
Social sign in is favoured for simplicity of use – removing the need for users to create new, bespoke accounts for every site or service they use. Therefore, it behoves the site to utilise social sign in using a widely adopted platform – and Facebook can count the highest number of users. According to statista, Facebook had more than 1.5 billion active users in January 2016 – incredible when you consider that the world’s population is under 7.5 billion.
With such a considerable percentage of potential users already signed up for a Facebook account, utilizing their service for social sign in can rapidly improve the customer journey and conversion rate.
However, there is a concern amongst a sizeable number of users that social sign in could pose more risks than advantages. When we conducted research with students at the University of Dundee, roughly two-thirds of those interviewed agreed that ‘social login will improve their experience’, leaving 33% not so confident.
Over-reliance on social sign in could alienate this group who are not as confident using the access method, meaning it is incredibly important to offer alternative access methods – ensuring all users are privy to their account and all important data.
Cross device relevance
Responsive design continues to be of utmost importance for online services – ensuring they aren’t losing traffic and conversions due to inefficient and ineffective layouts on any device. And Facebook’s cross device relevance helps solidify its position at the peak of social sign in provision –minimizing the number of users lost during the first steps of the customer journey.
The sheer usability of Facebook on phone, tablet or web browser means that a huge percentage of the network’s users are always logged in, regardless of the device they are using. This helps support one-touch access – incredibly important to all users, especially those using device with a fiddly touch screen. In fact, Facebook’s largest domination of a social sign in sub-section is mobile applications – where the network accounts for more than 75% of all sign ins.
Rather unsurprisingly for a social network which can claim to have 1.5 billion active users, Facebook’s reach extends throughout almost all of the developed world. Europe, the Americas, Africa, the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific all experience Facebook’s domination of social sign in. Central and South America is the region with the largest reliance on Facebook, with 81% of social sign in attempts coming courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg’s brainchild.
This is despite Facebook facing blackouts in a number of countries – most notably China, with its population of more than 1 billion people. Other countries which have made efforts to ban or largely restrict Facebook include North Korea, Iran, Cuba and Bangladesh.
The sheer wealth of personal information shared by people on Facebook makes it an even more attractive option for social sign in. Whilst Twitter limits its users to 144 characters and a small thumbnail profile photo, Facebook shamelessly invites its users to share all and sundry with friends and connected accounts.
Marketing on Facebook is made simpler by the ability to pinpoint potential customers with the relevant interests, geographical location and even disposable income – concentrating the advertising push significantly.
This marketing is enhanced by Facebook’s simplified sharing functionality – making it easier to encourage users signed in via Facebook to share a company’s page, post, sentiments or credentials. This free authoritative re-marketing trumps exhausting cold-calling and pop-up ads.
Despite Facebook closing in on the 10th anniversary of its public access opening, it shows no signs of slowing down. In 2015, the site enjoyed a 14% increase of user numbers – remarkable when the figure is already so high. This suggests that Facebook will likely continue to dominate both social media and social sign on for the foreseeable future at least.