I am planning on not requiring users to register upon downloading a mobile app (location-based social media), and instead allowing them to use a limited version of the app without an account.

How should I go about designing the interface for this? I would like to maximize the number of accounts created, but would also like to improve the users experience. Here are the options that I have come up with

  • Show the welcome view on first launch, and add a small "Continue without an account" button below the login and register buttons (click for a larger version)

    enter image description here

  • Bring users to the home view on the first launch, and show an alert asking them to login

  • Bring users to the home view and don't tell them they have to register until they need an account to do something

How could this best be done from a UX perspective, in an attempt to maximize registrations while also improving user experience?


2 Answers 2


To answer this question:

Lets lay down some basic methodolgy and points about registration and how social media integrates with these systems.


  • People dont like to register for things, especially not with their email due to spam and unsollicited messages concerns. Its often a hastle

The solution: Make registration less painful by letting users register using their preexisting facebook and or google accounts. read here for more advantages


  • Succesful social media heavily relies on customer/user retention. But not neseccarily on user real life authenticity. You can have a great user pressence that isnt tied to personal information or reidentification.

The lesson learned: Not all social media requires accounts, full anonimty is an option

Now if you insist on a user registration base, you must make registration:

  • not a chore
  • geninueinly useful
  • feeling required, by both you and the user

Ebay guest

Ebay for example realizes this, and lets you check out and use ebay as a guest because it knows that for some people registration would be a hastle and not useful. yet it clearly displays the advantages to registration on ebay

On your UX concern:

You should follow suit, make registration useful and people will register. When they are logged in as guests make sure they know what the advantages of registration are and prompt them to do so if the action they want to perform requires an account

As a side note: I can tell that a button or an option that lets you continue as a guest will be often used and that it bothers you, and sadly if your app is not very promising or engaging it will be the majority of users.

Its up to you to make people not only register but also use their registered accounts. unless you prefer a massive amount of one time use accounts with pracitcally zero retention

  • Thanks for your in-depth answer! I will now definitely not be requiring users to have accounts. How should I go about creating the interface for this?
    – Jojodmo
    Jun 26, 2016 at 7:57

I've gone with automated guest account creation that drops straight into the app.

If the user registers, any information they entered, is as added to their account.


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