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I am building a professional network and I am considering whether I should pre-fill sign-up form with the data that we obtain from the email enrichment API.

The current sign-up flow is:

  1. User gives their email.
  2. We send an email, which is used to authenticate user.
  3. Once they are authenticated, they are brought to the onboarding flow.
  4. The onboarding flow asks them questions such as: "What is your name?" "What is your Twitter?", etc.

This question is regarding the last step.

In theory, we don't need to ask the user to enter most of this data because we can pull it from email enrichment APIs. Just by having user's email (90% of the time) we can already pull their full name, their social profiles, and most of the other typical information about user's public presence. Therefore, should we just pre-fill this information for the user?

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If we were to follow this pattern, the first thing that the user would see after clicking on the link we've sent to their email would be this form with their first name and last name pre-filled and advising about the source of the information.

Has anyone done it before?

How was this perceived?

What are the possible downsides?

  • If a user data is pulled from your own system where user had supplied it before, then I don't see a concern on pre-filling the user data. In fact, it would make their life easier in filling the form. – Ades Jun 11 at 9:09
  • With the raising focus on user privacy, I am pretty sure this wouldn't be a clever solution. Also you'd need to follow quite a lot of different of privacy / data protection laws all across the globe. Imo, it is not worth it, especially not if the user would need to manually delete all the given information if it's autofilled wrongly. That feature has basically no benefit that would justify everything you have to be concerned about to be legally safe to use it. Also consider, you would need to make people in the EU opt-in into that function and also five them the ability to opt-out of it. – marvinpoo Jun 12 at 12:47
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I‘ve not tested this so cannot be sure but I think it's useful to fill out the information for the user if you can reliably do it as it speeds up the process for them.

As long as you tell the user where you got it from so it's not surprising and let them correct any mistakes (like if they changed their name or there‘s a typo).

I can see you are telling the user but I think you could do with make it clear by making it more prominent (larger text, put it above the form etc).

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its efficient if you are okay with API Pricing also allow user to overwrite the fields if they want to just add a info icon on the text below no other downsides i can see

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  • Please answer the questions the OP asked. Implementation is not the focus of this question but rather how the feature would be perceived and possible UX downsides. – Nash Nov 9 at 14:57

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