Social logins have become increasingly important as a way for consumers to easily identify themselves on the Web. While Facebook has long been the dominant player, Google has seen some significant gains recently. According to data from Gigya, a provider of social identity management solutions, Yahoo only has a 15 percent share of social logins. But perhaps it wants a bigger piece of the pie.
The Internet corporation announced yesterday that it would be disabling the social login options from Facebook and Google for certain services, including Flickr and Fantasy Sports. According to Reuters, this is a direct reversal of the strategy adopted by the company’s previous CEO in 2010 and 2011. Perhaps with good reason.
Gigya CEO Patrick Salyer says Yahoo has seen significant drops recently as a provider of third party identity logins, noting that Yahoo obviously wants to be a serious player in the field of online consumer identity.
“By shutting out Facebook and Google, Yahoo has declared they’d like to be considered a go-to identity provider to consumers,” he says, “Yahoo will need to provide increased value to both consumers and businesses alike. For example, they’ll need to consider how identity can be used to power on-site personalization, social graph integration and maybe even payments one day.”
The Google and Facebook login buttons won’t go away immediately, but will be removed from all Yahoo services eventually. Maybe the strategy will pay off and maybe it won’t.
“Only time will tell if Marissa [Mayer] will take this to the next level to actually become a competitive identity provider,” Salyer says. “Or [they] are just closing off to the benefits that [a] Facebook and Google login might provide for nothing in return.”
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