Managing data conversion for late registrations

Singapore
21st May 2019
How can apps and services with a largely unregistered audience clearly communicate the value of creating an account after extended time on the platform?
Product Context

Newswav participated in the TTC Labs Data Innovation Program, which was part of the first season of Startup Station Singapore in partnership with IMDA.

Newswav is a multilingual news aggregator for Malaysian readers who want to read news from multiple sources, in multiple languages. In order to provide an accurately tailored news feed to a reader, Newswav (locally and anonymously) keeps track of the articles they’ve read in the app, and their stated preferences for content types and languages.

Aimed at casual readers, it onboards people with a light-touch approach and does not require them to create an account unless they want to comment on articles or sync their activity across devices.

Problem & Opportunity

When an anonymous reader is converted to a registered account, analytics data that was not previously shared with Newswav (preferred publishers and topics, time on the platform) is shared with the service.

How might we...

...provide casual users of an app or service a clear indication of what changes if they create an account with that service, and options to proceed?

Team Newswav reviewing HMW statements to decide on a challenge focus

Design Features
Explaining data transactions

If and when someone creates an account, a data transaction takes place where Newswav is given access to their name, email address, and profile picture through either of Facebook or Google’s log-in feature.

Newswav needs to be as transparent as possible about this transaction in the signup flow and clearly articulate the data collected, and the value a reader gets in return for that exchange. By explaining the reader benefits upfront — better articles and UX improvements — Newswav is able to frame their data collection in a positive way.

Being as transparent as possible about exactly what data someone will share with them by creating an account with Newswav helps build trust between a reader and the service.

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Design Features
A transparent opt-out process

If someone selects “No” in the previous screen, they are prompted to reconsider — framed by the benefits they stand to lose without an account.

If a reader still wishes to proceed without an account, the fact that their data will be completely removed is clearly explained to them at this point.

They can go on using the app without an account and without sharing any of this information, with Newswav taking a “privacy by default” approach for readers without an account.

newswav-2-screen-3
Next steps

It is important to build trust and act transparently with a largely casual audience. If they haven’t invested a large amount of time and energy into an app, a minor issue is all it could take to push them to alternative services.

How might we build on Newswav’s ideas to allow people — whether they already have an account or are in the process of creating one — to manage exactly what they share with the app on an ongoing basis?