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I recently came across a website that sell random market products but because they are a small startup their services are not yet available everywhere in my city. To avoid problems due to their limited service area, they ask you to register and give them your zip code so they can check if they are currently working on your region. Needless to say many users will have to complete the register process only to find out that the service is not available, which is very annoying. Also a "buy-then-register" approach is probably even a worse solution for their design problem.

Anyway, I told you this small story only to ask: when your user must register/login to be able to use your website due to company's lack of service in some regions, what is the best approach to avoid unnecessary frustration and avoid users from leaving your website due to the login wall?

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I would avoid that approach if at all possible. If the first thing they want to know is whether or not they can even interact with your products via ZIP Code, make that the first thing they enter. Then you can tell them right away whether or not it is worth their time to complete the registration process. Users HATE having their time wasted.

Make the engagement process gentle and low impact whenever possible.

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    I would make the entering of a ZIP code part of a process for notifying users when the service will be available in their area. – PhillipW Aug 21 '16 at 19:42
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    I agree with this, I would make them only enter a zip code at the beginning, explaining why it's necessary. Then if it is unavailable, ask them if they would like to enter an email to be notified about when it is available. If it comes back that it is available ask them to register (or let them look around first, depending on the business process). – DasBeasto Aug 23 '16 at 12:55
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You're dealing with location of the user, and location of the service area for the company.

  • Can you get the information from the user, without requiring them to enter any information? Best Buy, for example, has a Store Locator that seems to infer the location of the user from their IP address. It's likely using something similar to https://ipapi.co/ for this purpose.

  • Minimize the information required to provide the answer. If you can allow the user to enter only their zip code, that's easier than requiring city-state-zip, and you can 'lookup' the city-state information from the zip code, if necessary.

  • Provide editing capabitilies, in case the results don't match expectations, or in case the user made a mistake; allow them to easily correct the error.

You may also want to take a look at the list of 'Top 50 E-Commerce Checkout' interfaces, published by Baymard. http://baymard.com/checkout-usability/benchmark/top-100

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The better way to keep user glued by following pattern

1) Ask them about location as they visit your site 2) Allow user to choose products 3) At the time of making payment give them option to REGISTER or GUEST USER LOGIN

Using login features with facebook or google plus will make it more at ease for users

  • What about users like me who won't login using facebook or google plus? – Rob Aug 22 '16 at 11:39
  • It can be optional feature. – Priyanka Goyal Aug 22 '16 at 11:47
  • I'm pretty sure far more people won't login with facebook than they will with email. Facebook and G+ are the odd one. – Rob Aug 22 '16 at 11:56
  • User login with social media has increased lately. Doing this reduce time for user. Many e-com players have incorporated the features considering the stats. – Priyanka Goyal Aug 22 '16 at 11:59
  • That's a good idea indeed. I don't need to force every client that enters the Zip code on my site to register, I just need to do so to check if the service is available for them. I put some more thought on this and I now I believe the user experience would flow better if instead of a Zip code form the site had an address form because many users don't know their Zip code. What do you guys think about this? – Mr. Uselessrobot Aug 22 '16 at 13:48

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