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Often I see websites when at the end of the registration process the user is not logged in. What is the rational for that?

It seems redundant to ask a user to reenter their credentials just after they signed up, no? I understand that in the code, those two are separate functionalities, but from a UX / web design stand point, is there any reason to do it that way?



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can you provide some more specific examples of what you mean? URLs and steps? – Jeff Atwood Oct 28 '10 at 10:10
I think in a lot of cases it is likely that the developer(s) simply overlooked that bit of functionality. – BradB Oct 28 '10 at 16:25
up vote 7 down vote accepted

A couple reasons come to mind:

  1. The signup process is awaiting e-mail verification. It's not uncommon to force users to verify their e-mail addresses before allowing them access to a service (particularly if the service is concerned about spammers or plans to send promotional e-mails to account holders).

  2. Forcing the user to enter the credentials they just signed up with will have the additional effect of allowing their browser to save the new credentials on the login form for faster access in the future.

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Spam and bots. If you signup and are instantly in and able to post or interact with the site, whats stopping you from logging out doing it again and doing it nonstop? Nothing. By making you login you have to at least memorize the data you put into the login name and password fields, which is a step not all bots have built in so you're instantly knocking out quite a few there.

By adding in an email validation you're delaying the process even more. Now this bot has to hang out and wait around for an email before it can harass your site. These valuable seconds it spends waiting aren't worth it with so many other websites that let you instantly be logged in soon as you finish registration.

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