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Existing Customer Login Woes

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    Existing Customer Login Woes

    In watching a bunch of Hotjar sessions, I find that our customers try to create an account when they already have one, or try and checkout and they get stuck seeing an error "The email address you entered is already in use".

    What do other merchants do to combat this and help the customer figure out they already have an account, and prompt login instead of letting them fill out the whole form only to submit and get the error?

    I feel like doing a step approach -- enter email address, next, then if nothing matched, show them the form would be one way, but I fear that breaks some sort of compliance rules because then a spammer or scammer could test for known good accounts/emails.

    Am I overthinking it? Looking for any suggestions to remove this friciton.

    Happy early turkey day!


    A few years ago, I did some research on this for a client. I think it's fairly common for 5% to 10% of the accounts in any store to be duplicates or near-duplicates. Apparently for customers who don't shop at a store very often, it's pretty easy to forget that they already have an account, and try to create a new one.

    I'm not sure about the security/compliance issue you mentioned. An in-house expert will probably advise you about that.

    It might be helpful to enhance that "already in use" error message to be more user-friendly. For example, it can include a link to the LOGN page, so that customers can send a forgot-password email and recover their old account.
    Last edited by Kent Multer; 11-24-21, 05:49 PM.
    Kent Multer
    Magic Metal Productions
    * Web developer/designer
    * E-commerce and Miva
    * Author, The Official Miva Web Scripting Book -- available on-line:


      Shadows latest version automatically does an email lookup during the account creation phase, and displays the following error message if an account is found on the next page, which does not make any sense:

      "The email address you entered is already in use."

      If email already exist, why not present me with the option to sign-in right there with a password field and password reset option instead of taking me to the next screen to with the above error message and displaying all the fields to create a new account? Am I missing something here could this had been executed a little better?
      Thank you, Bill Davis


        Two ways you can do this:

        1. Create an error message replacement

        Search for "The email address you entered is already in use." under User Interface > Global Settings > Error Messages

        Once you find the error message you can add a replacement.

        Something like this will at least direct the user to the right place.

        The email address you entered is already in use.<br/><br/>Forgot Your Password? <a href="" class="bold blue">Click Here!</a>

        You will also need to change the error message code on any of the pages it would be displayed (ACAD, ACED, etc.) from &mvte:error; to &mvt:error; in order for miva to render the html code in the error message.

        Error message code is usually in the header of the page templates.

        2. Add SMT code to the page template(s)

        After the error message code in the header of the page template you need to display it on add this:

        <mvt:if expr="l.settings:messages:error_message_count">
            <p class="align-center message message-error">
                <mvt:foreach iterator="error" array="messages:error_messages">
                    &mvt:error;<br />
        <mvt:if expr="'The email address you entered is already in use' CIN l.settings:messages:error_messages">
            Forgot Your Password? <a href="&mvt:urls:FPWD:auto;" class="bold blue">Click Here!</a>
        Hope this helps.