Simple fact: Masking passwords contributes to login failures.
I recently came across an intriguing blog post by Luke Wroblewski on the idea of showing and hiding passwords.
According to Luke:
-82% of people have forgotten their passwords
-Password recovery is the number one request to Intranet help desks
-If people attempt to recover a password while checking out of an e-commerce site, 75% won’t complete their purchase.
He goes on to claim that this issue is only made worse on mobile devices.
With the limited time I had, I searched for some more research to support this argument, but came up short. I did find a handful of folks at several well-known companies that have unmasked their passwords and seen great success. That’s enough for me to get excited about turning this into an A/B test!
A simple, first test recommendation would be to run your default page (Control) against a show/hide password field, with the default set to show (Challenger A).
If the control wins, then it’s possible that users feel safe with a hidden password, and generally don’t make any mistakes when entering their password.
If the challenger wins, we may learn that users prefer to choose whether or not to display the password, and that this option helps reduce login failures and move users through the funnel.
Let us know!
Be sure to report back on your test results and let us know what you learn!