InAcademia provides real-time evidence of ‘student-ness’ when it is necessary for retailers to offer discounted online and retail services to student and academic communities*. Example scenarios are outlined below:

Retail Services

The InAcademia service helps businesses ensure that customers claiming to be eligible for niche discounts and services are entitled to them. This helps to mitigate the risk of lost revenue to customers attempting to access discounts that they’re not entitled to access. As it’s an online service, it negates the need to ask for copies of student cards or other personal documentation, which often creates a considerable overhead and increased workloads.

Validation at purchase
In this scenario, a user needs to validate its academic affiliation when completing a purchase in order to qualify for a special offer, typically as part of a checkout process. As this provides real-time confirmation of a user’s affiliation it is a trustworthy and up-to-date validation confirmation, and allows the merchant to ‘unlock’ discounts or services that are targeted only towards the academic community.

Online Services

Validation at Registration for Online Services

By using InAcademia companies offering online services for students, including reduced-price software or training services can be certain that they’re only giving the discount to people who are entitled to it, and can protect against lost revenue resulting from fraudulent claims for student discounts. InAcademia can replace other methods of proving entitlement such as checking scanned copies of student cards or only allowing .ac email addresses to register, removing the necessity to maintain a detailed understanding of the institutional landscape, which can slow down the sales process and can throttle growth of the customer base as a result.

Asking a user to validate affiliation with an institution as part of the registration process on your website, may give you the information you need to be certain that the user has entitlement to access specific services, or that you can present restricted discounts to the user. As the validation is carried out in real-time, you can choose to request validation at the point of registration only, or again at the time when a sales transaction is carried out in the future.

Whilst the registration process might be online this scenario can also apply to offline contexts, such as access-controlled services such as gyms, where the service is offline, but the subscription is managed online.

Merchants are able to ask users to validate their academic affiliation both at the initial registration, and again at regular periods, to avoid continued use of the service when the user ceases to be a student or academic user. A successful validation at the point of registration assures the user is, for example, a student at that time (as the validation is in real time), but it does not guarantee the user is still a student at the point of any future transactions.

*please note that the InAcademia Service makes no attempt to create a relationship with users/students; its operators are in no way responsible or obligated to the end user for any aspect of the products/services subject to the purchase. InAcademia does not act as an agent for the student, merchant, institution or identity federation, and the identity validation process is a non-linear diversion that does not relate to the sale itself.
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