Are you one of those that are paranoid that whenever you enter your password into the password field, the cursor might jump onto the login field and everyone around you might see your beautifully crafted password? I’m sure I am not alone in this. It is true especially when we’re projecting our screens in a public setting. We don’t want the world to know our password now, do we? It’s one of the most closely protected of secrets for most of us.
In this article, I want to talk to you about a login process flow I really appreciate as it alleviates this fear. This process flow was designed to inspire trust and confidence in the software. So, which software am I talking about? Most of us are pretty familiar with it and use it regularly. It’s none other than Google Drive. So, what’s so special about it? Well, let’s find out!
Now, google Drive’s login process flows like this:
First, you’re presented with a screen for you to enter your Google account.
This could be either your username or your email ID (which by the way, I am a huge fan of. I don’t have to enter “@gmail.com” everytime I login!). That’s it; there are no other fields for you to enter here. When you click next or press enter, the next screen appears.This is the one with the field to enter your password.
Again, there is just one single field for the password and nothing else. There is no way the cursor is jumping anywhere and revealing your password. No way. This is what I meant when I said that it is designed to inspire trust and confidence. If there is 0 probability that the cursor is jumping anywhere, there is nothing to worry about.
The first time I observed this, I wondered if having 2 separate pages for this process instead of the traditional single page induced a disadvantage of either increasing the time taken to login or increasing the mental effort required to login. Here’s what I found: (Note: This wasn’t measured in any quantifiable manner because the difference was too negligible to warrant that effort)
Increase in time required to login
For this first hypothesis, let us look at the login process in general. We open the website, then if it is a self-respecting website, the cursor is automatically in the Email ID/Username field, ready for input. Then you either press tab or use the mouse pointer to direct your cursor to the password field. So, a total of 2 actions before finally pressing Enter to login.
The same number of actions are also required by the Drive login flow. Enter username/email ID, press enter or click the next button. This is the first action. The next page loads instantaneously with the cursor in the password field. Enter the password and press enter or the login button. This is action 2. That’s it, its done. I’ve personally never seen/experienced a delay between pressing enter and the password page appearing. So, we can safely say that the process’ time is not affected by having 2 screens.
Increase in mental effort
As we saw previously, the process is not different from a normal single page login process, doesn’t require additional steps and doesn’t require us, the users to learn anything new. This means, no impact on mental effort required to login.
So there we have it, a process designed to inspire confidence while not affecting the end user’s experience and interaction with the product negatively. I have tremendous respect for the designers who were responsible for this flow. Though it’s only a small change, it has greatly reduced my anxiety when logging in. This first impression being positive naturally inspires trust and confidence in the product offered as well and fortunately, Google has done a great job delivering on both.
Did you notice this difference before reading this article? Think you’ve seen something even better? Drop a comment or an email. I’m all ears. Who doesn’t love a good design lesson? Untill then, cheers!!