In an effort to move our websites into the new “Web 2.0”, Google’s Friend Connect was publicly made available as of yesterday (Thursday, Dec 4, 2008) which will allow a client to log-in to their Google, Yahoo, AIM, or OpenID user name and password from your website and access social data such as Friends Lists, Profile Information, Feed Messages, Reviews, Ratings and more.
For testing purposes, I have placed the Friend Connect on my Wedding Website at http://www.HavasuWeddingDJ.com – as well as http://www.OutsideTheBox.biz (lower left of page). Feel free to add yourself if you wish to play around with this application.
We’ve all seen “Guest Books” and “Graffiti Walls”, as well as even “Rating” applications – this takes all that to a whole new level. While most of our websites probably will not be utilizing these tools, there are more to come as developers adapt to this new technology so I encourage us all to stay informed. Other advantages will come in to play by being able to pull the persons Name and other available information, and insert it right into the content of your website, once they do log-in. Imagine: A client visits your website, joins your site as a member/friend, then immediately they see that the message on screen in your sales copy addresses them by name — “Congratulations on your upcoming Wedding Julie” — and all they did was log in.
Facebooks has Friend Connect too, just to keep you ahead on this technology. While Facebooks has the “users and the momentum” as stated by TechCrunch contributing author Erick Schonfeld in his article, I believe personally that Google has the larger following, and with the ability to login once through one application and immediately be logged into the rest all at once, plus Google’s “Google Checkout” for some websites – it would not suprise me if you start to see Google pull ahead on this, as they were the first to develop it in the first place (just last to make it publicly available – Google’s was in Invitation Only Alpha Testing up until its Beta Release as spoken about in this article).
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