21 August 2019

#029 - The Process of Changing Emails

It's been a busy month due to working overtime hours, thus lagging behind in my coding projects. However, I've been updating my e-mails across the Interweb.

A few weeks ago, I decided to consolidate my e-mail accounts. I am still working through my online accounts. Let's just say that I am close to reaching my limit of aliases associated with my designated enterprise mail provider.

From a user experience, it has been a frustrating process. You would expect organisations to test (and facilitate) their own customer journey workflow. Never mind the obvious key performance indicator (KPI) to secure a customer to subscribe to your own newsletter, but you should also consider the workflow to changing one's e-mail address. It's not rocket science.

As I login to my web accounts with the view to change my e-mail address, there are websites who ask me to enter my new e-mail address once, whilst prompting me to confirm my password. Some websites ask for the e-mail address to be entered twice, with the addition of my current password as a form of user validation. The latter makes more sense in case you have sausage fingers. Some websites have a conditional script attached to the secondary textbox, where you need to re-enter your e-mail address. The script prevents you from copying and pasting the newly typed e-mail address, which is logical and acceptable.

Most websites will send out an automated e-mail to your new e-mail address with instructions to confirm your new e-mail address. This also makes sense and I can understand how this process would assume the new e-mail address would supersede your account when it comes to receiving subscribed newsletters and account information.

However, not all web accounts follow a linear logic when it comes to utilising your new e-mail address to receiving subscribed newsletters (despite following through the process of changing and confirming your new e-mail address). Instead, you will continue to receive your designated newsletter at your old e-mail address, as opposed to your new e-mail address.

You will then assume that by unsubscribing the newsletter at your old e-mail address would force the web account to use the new e-mail address associated with your web account. However, I have learned that this is not the case.

Some services allow you to update and/or manage your newsletter subscription, where you can change your e-mail address to use the new e-mail. For some web accounts, I have tried another tactic including disabling the newsletter and saving my settings, before re-enabling the newsletter and saving the settings again (a bit like rebooting a computer, or switching something off before powering it back on again).

Only one web account was very strict to confirm my newly changing e-mail address. Firstly, they sent out a confirmation e-mail to my current e-mail address. Upon validating my current e-mail address, I then received another confirmation e-mail - this time, the destination reached my new e-mail address. I cannot recall the name of the web account that follows this strict process. It may well be a digital currency exchange. I am certain it was Coinbase that adopted this secure approach.

So yeah, I am two thirds done with changing my e-mail address across the board, but as a software developer to be, I may code a workflow that is intuitive to the end-user when it comes to changing one's e-mail address. The process should be seamless, and it should be automated at the back-end without the user instigating further action - so they can receive newsletters at the ready. Ironically, Adobe fails in this simple process when you choose to update your e-mail address. It seems like your new e-mail address only represents your credentials when logging to the Adobe Creative Cloud, but when it comes to newsletter subscriptions - it's a tedious process to unsubscribe from the old and re-subscribe using the new e-mail address. So much so, that the subscription management page doesn't retain your previous settings.