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I have a 'follow' feature on my site and I am unsure of how to handle it for users that are not logged-in.

I currently show the button for all users, and then if the user clicks the button but is not logged-in, a message is displayed explaining this feature is for members only.

I would like the button there so that non members know that there actually is a follow feature and therefore would hopefully be encouraged to sign up.

I am however unsure if this seems like the wrong way to go.

What is the most effective method to handle this?

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You can use below button for your Non-signed up users

enter image description here

As soon as user mouse over on the button

enter image description here

Show the Little Signup Form - Followed by the Follow Button

enter image description here


Hope this helps. BTW We a/b tested this approach. You'll see a way high conversion rate in this.

  1. Users love Quick Signups (They hate filling long forms)

  2. Users are actually doing two actions simultaneously (Signup+Follow)

  3. It fits your context - Letting your non registered know that they need to signup to follow.

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If you would like to keep the feature for non-members too, can you disable the button for non-members and when they hover mouse pointer display an informational tool tip that the feature is member only ?

Disabling them and making it clear on what actions a user need to take and how to achieve that might help converting users into members.

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If you have a clear business objective defined, then the answer should be easy.

In this case it sounds like you do:

I would like the button there so that non members know that there actually is a follow feature and therefore would hopefully be encouraged to sign up.

So the business objective is: increase sign up.

By exposing this 'member-only' functionality is the right way to support the business objective.

If however there wasn't a business objective like this, then I would recommend not showing the button at all in favour of a cleaner UI.

Often when designing UIs or improve user experiences we get caught up in the detail and need to take a step back to look at the intention of what it is we are doing. By having a well defined set of business goals or design principles is critical in ux design to be able to objectively make design decisions.

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In an ideal world every UX project should have business objectives or user stories to go on by. Practically speaking, a lot of times it doesn't, especially not the 'smaller' projects.

In this case, i assume you're setting your own objectives, but do you also know the users you're designing them for? Do you think they might feel advantage when being a member? What else can they do or expect when they're a member? And is that something you or your client can cater for, now and in the future?

All these questions aside - and i assume you have thought it through and you'd much like that option - if you clearly want visitors to be motivated to sign up, i would also suggest a disabled button that pops a message when they click. I'd try to do it gently though, because you can't break a user's expectation too abruptly. Maybe you could have a button saying 'You can follow me...' and a gentle popup saying 'but we would like to know who you are first'

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As far as I've observed, most websites have a few features like this and almost all of them show a pop-up or modal window where you can login or signup upon clicking the "members only" feature. You've mentioned that "I would like the button there so that non members know that there actually is a follow feature and therefore would hopefully be encouraged to sign up."

This is similar to scenarios in products which encourage you to upgrade plans as well. (On clicking 'Hide ad', a message is displayed saying this is only for subscribers and a button to "Upgrade Plan" or "Subscribe" is provided.)

I think the ideal solution for your case is to show the Follow button for all users and direct them to a login screen/pop-up when they click Follow.

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