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12 Best CIAM Solutions Shortlist

After a careful evaluation, I've hand-picked the top 12 CIAM solutions and what each one does best:

  1. Salesforce Platform - Best for extensive ecosystem integration
  2. FusionAuth - Best for comprehensive customization options
  3. CyberArk Identity - Best for robust security focus
  4. SAP Customer Service Identity and Access Management for B2C - Best for businesses utilizing SAP suite
  5. OneLogin - Best for simplified access management
  6. IBM Security Verify - Best for AI-driven adaptive access
  7. Google Cloud Identity - Best for organizations deep in the Google ecosystem
  8. WS02 Identity Server - Best for its open-source advantage
  9. Amazon Cognito - Best for AWS centric organizations
  10. Frontegg - Best for rapid SaaS integrations
  11. Okta Customer Identity - Best for diverse application compatibility
  12. Stytch - Best for passwordless authentication

Navigating the Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM) world, I found these identity platforms to be like a labyrinth. They provide secure access, frictionless access, shield against data breaches, and offer identity verification whether on-premise or cloud-based. I realized the importance of adaptive authentication and discovered CIAM's role in enhancing login experiences through end-to-end services, including biometric verification.

With rising mobile device usage, automation in identity verification is vital, streamlining workflows without compromising security. The real benefit of CIAM is mitigating data breaches and providing a smooth end user experience. It makes securing digital borders manageable, balancing user-friendliness with high-grade security.

What is a CIAM Solutions?

Customer identity and access management solutions form an integral part of the digital framework for organizations seeking to manage and secure customer identities effectively. These tools facilitate creating, storing, and managing customer profiles while ensuring an easy customer experience.

Typically used by businesses with an online presence, these solutions handle registration, account management, consent, preference management, and authentication flows. Companies utilize CIAM solutions to provide a secure, easy user experience across various channels, personalize omnichannel experiences, fortify their security posture, and maintain regulatory compliance. In essence, CIAM solutions are the gatekeepers of user data and identity in the digital realm.

Overview of the 12 Best CIAM Solutions

1. Salesforce Platform - Best for extensive ecosystem integration

Salesforce Platform summary dashboard
Here's the Salesforce Platform summary dashboard which provides visually appealing data visualizations, enhancing results and reporting.

The Salesforce Platform provides a comprehensive suite of services, including a robust CIAM solution. It offers an array of features, focusing on user identity and access management, which plays a significant role in the Salesforce ecosystem's extensive integration capabilities.

Why I Picked Salesforce Platform:

In my evaluation, I picked the Salesforce Platform for its vast integration possibilities within its ecosystem. It stands out due to its interoperability with a range of Salesforce services, enhancing business performance by simplifying identity management. This trait makes the Salesforce Platform the best choice for extensive ecosystem integration.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Among the myriad of features, the Salesforce Platform offers a robust identity and access management service, multi-factor authentication, and user provisioning, to name a few. Additionally, it presents a strong policy engine for granular access control.

For integrations, the Salesforce Platform is second to none. It integrates smoothly with other services within the Salesforce ecosystem, like Salesforce CRM, Service Cloud, and Marketing Cloud, facilitating a holistic business process.


Pricing starts from $25/user/month (min 5 seats)


  • Excellent ecosystem integration
  • Comprehensive feature set
  • Strong policy engine for granular access control


  • Pricing could be high for small businesses
  • Might require a learning curve
  • Overkill for businesses not utilizing the Salesforce ecosystem

2. FusionAuth - Best for comprehensive customization options

FusionAuth report dashboard sample
This is a sample screenshot of the FusionAuth reports section which displays APIs for retrieving daily, monthly, and total user data.

FusionAuth is a CIAM solution that provides extensive customization features for managing customer identities. It is designed to allow businesses to tailor their identity management system, aligning it perfectly with their specific needs.

Why I Picked FusionAuth:

I chose FusionAuth as a part of this list for its outstanding ability to offer customization options. In my assessment, FusionAuth is committed to delivering a system that can be modified to fit any business's unique requirements. This makes it ideal for businesses seeking comprehensive customization options in a CIAM solution.

Standout Features & Integrations:

FusionAuth has several key features including social login, single sign-on, and a flexible user data model. It also provides passwordless login and advanced registration forms, adding to its customization capabilities.

Regarding integrations, FusionAuth plays well with a host of other systems. It integrates smoothly with business, single-page, and even native mobile apps. Furthermore, it offers API compatibility, enabling it to work effectively with custom apps.


Pricing starts from $75/month (billed annually)


  • High degree of customization
  • Wide range of integrations
  • Flexible user data model


  • Might be complex for small businesses
  • The user interface could be more intuitive
  • Annual billing might not appeal to all

3. CyberArk Identity - Best for robust security focus

CyberArk Identity Admin Portal
Here is the CyberArk Identity admin portal screenshot. It streamlines compliance and operational efficiencies with a single admin portal.

CyberArk Identity is a CIAM solution that strongly focuses on security, providing a robust set of features to manage and protect customer identities. It makes security the centerpiece of its approach to identity management, ensuring customer data is always well-protected.

Why I Picked CyberArk Identity:

In my evaluation, I chose CyberArk Identity for its intense commitment to secure customer identity management. Compared to other solutions, CyberArk Identity shines in its ability to provide high-level security while managing identities, making it a solid choice for businesses with a strong emphasis on security.

Standout Features & Integrations:

CyberArk Identity offers impressive security-focused features such as adaptive multi-factor authentication and risk-based access control. It also provides Single Sign-On (SSO) and identity lifecycle management, contributing to the overall security scheme.

Regarding integrations, CyberArk Identity can work easily with a host of enterprise apps. It can integrate well with various VPNs, VDI, web apps, and even cloud apps, making it a versatile choice.


Pricing upon request


  • Strong focus on cybersecurity
  • Risk-based access control
  • Wide range of integrations


  • Pricing information not readily available
  • May be complex for some users
  • Could use more customization options

4. SAP Customer Service Identity and Access Management for B2C - Best for businesses utilizing SAP suite

SAP Customer Service Identity and Access Management for B2C sample device dashboard
Take a look at this screenshot from SAP Customer Service Identity and Access Management for B2C, where you can see the customer profile settings.

SAP's CIAM solution is designed to integrate with the rest of SAP's product suite, making it a top pick for companies already invested in the SAP ecosystem. It offers robust identity management capabilities, complemented by many SAP-specific features.

Why I Picked SAP Customer Service Identity and Access Management for B2C:

I selected SAP's CIAM solution because of its comprehensive integration with SAP's suite of products. This makes it the best fit for businesses that already utilize SAP's software suite, as it allows them to manage and secure customer identities within a familiar environment.

Standout Features & Integrations:

SAP's CIAM solution offers registration, authentication, and access management features. It also provides Single Sign-On (SSO), risk-based authentication, and built-in analytics to better understand your customer behavior.

However, this tool’s real power comes from its deep integration capabilities with SAP's suite of products. It interacts with SAP Marketing Cloud, SAP Service Cloud, and other products in the SAP family, making data transfer and management a breeze.


Pricing upon request


  • Deep integration with SAP suite
  • In-built analytics
  • Comprehensive identity management features


  • Pricing information not readily available
  • May not be the best fit for non-SAP users
  • User interface could be more intuitive

5. OneLogin - Best for simplified access management

OneLogin device sample
Here's OneLogin, it allows multiple logins for the same application using a single sign-on authentication system.

OneLogin is a cloud-based identity and access management provider that helps businesses secure all aspects of their network and applications. It simplifies the process of managing access rights across numerous devices and applications, making it a top choice for businesses in need of a streamlined solution for access management.

Why I Picked OneLogin:

I chose OneLogin for this list because it focuses on making access management simple and efficient. Its straightforward and user-friendly interface reduces the complexity of managing user access across various platforms. It's ideal for businesses needing a clear, effective way to handle access management.

Standout Features & Integrations:

OneLogin's primary features include Single Sign-On (SSO), Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), and user provisioning. It also supports real-time Active Directory and LDAP integration, which offers immediate synchronization across your entire directory.

OneLogin integrates with various applications, including Office 365, G Suite, AWS, Slack, and Zoom. This wide range of integration options provides added convenience for businesses already using these platforms.


From $2/user/month


  • Simple and user-friendly interface
  • Wide range of integration options
  • Strong access management features


  • Customer service may sometimes be slow
  • Certain advanced features may require higher-priced plans
  • Less suitable for small businesses due to per-user pricing

6. IBM Security Verify - Best for AI-driven adaptive access

IBM Security Verify password vaulting overview
Here's an overview of IBM Security Verify's password vaulting.

IBM Security Verify is an identity and access management solution that employs artificial intelligence to provide adaptive access. This cloud-based IAM platform offers a variety of tools designed to secure user identities and provide customized access based on various factors, making it the go-to solution for businesses seeking AI-enhanced access management.

Why I Picked IBM Security Verify:

In my search for IAM tools, IBM Security Verify stood out due to its unique use cases of AI to drive adaptive access. This feature enables organizations to adapt access protocols based on user behavior and other risk indicators. Therefore, it's best for businesses that require high-security adaptability driven by AI.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Key features of IBM Security Verify include risk-based access, custom user journeys, and a unified user portal. With these features, the tool allows organizations to streamline their IAM processes and tailor them to fit specific user journeys.

IBM Security Verify integrates with various enterprise applications and systems such as Office 365, Salesforce, and Workday. Additionally, it integrates with other IBM security products for a comprehensive security approach.


Pricing upon request


  • Uses AI for adaptive access control
  • Offers custom user journeys for streamlined access
  • Integrates with multiple enterprise applications and systems


  • Pricing is not transparent and must be requested
  • May be too complex for smaller businesses
  • High learning curve due to AI capabilities

7. Google Cloud Identity - Best for organizations deep in the Google ecosystem

Google Cloud Identity customer dashboard
This is a screenshot of the customer identity dashboard inside Google Cloud Identity.

Google Cloud Identity simplifies identity and access management, easily integrating with Google's suite of tools and services. Ideal for businesses frequently using Google's ecosystem.

Why I Picked Google Cloud Identity:

As I explored various IAM tools, Google Cloud Identity stood out due to its direct integration with Google's vast ecosystem. Google's identity and access management system is great for companies using Google services. It allows easy management of identities and access across both Google and non-Google services, perfect for organizations heavily relying on Google.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Google Cloud Identity offers comprehensive IAM capabilities including single sign-on (SSO), multi-factor authentication (MFA), and user lifecycle management. It also provides advanced security with Google's threat and anomaly detection mechanisms. This tool works well with other Google services and has secure connections to traditional apps.


Google Cloud Identity pricing starts from $6/user/month (billed annually).


  • Offers native integration with various Google services
  • Provides comprehensive IAM capabilities
  • Leverages Google's threat and anomaly detection for advanced security


  • May not be the best choice for non-Google users
  • Lacks transparency in pricing for non-Google services
  • Limited customization options compared to some other IAM solutions

8. WSO2 Identity Server - Best for its open-source advantage

WSO2 Identity Server analytics dashboard
Here's WSO2 Identity Server's analytics dashboard which shows you the total login attempts.

WSO2 Identity Server is a customizable IAM solution with advanced security features, making it a versatile choice for personalized identity and access management.

Why I Picked WSO2 Identity Server:

While selecting tools, WSO2 Identity Server caught my attention due to its open-source nature, which enables a high level of customization. WSO2 Identity Server offers customized identity and access management for organizations. Its flexibility and open-source nature make it a top choice.

Standout Features & Integrations:

WSO2 Identity Server provides single sign-on, multi-factor authentication, and identity federation features. Furthermore, it allows for the development of custom user stores and offers API security features. As an open-source solution, WSO2 Identity Server can be customized to integrate with various applications, databases, and systems per the organization's specific requirements. It also supports standard protocols such as SAML, OpenID, and OAuth.


WSO2 Identity Server's basic open-source version is free. However, pricing starts from $20/user/month (billed annually) for enterprise-level features and support.


  • Provides high customizability due to its open-source nature
  • Supports standard identity protocols
  • Allows for custom user store development


  • Complexity of customization might require technical expertise
  • Enterprise-level features and support come at a cost
  • Open-source nature might pose security concerns for some organizations

9. Amazon Cognito - Best for AWS centric organizations

Amazon Cognito identity browser view
Here's Amazon Cognito's dashboard sample.

Amazon Cognito is an identity self-service that manages users and data synchronization. It integrates with AWS services for streamlined access management.

Why I Picked Amazon Cognito:

I selected Amazon Cognito for this list primarily due to its integration with the AWS ecosystem. In my comparison, it stood out for its built-in integrations with many AWS services. This interoperability makes Amazon Cognito ideal for organizations heavily invested in the AWS ecosystem, ensuring easy and efficient access management.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Amazon Cognito manages user directories, offers identity federation, and customizes sign-up and login interfaces. The most valuable integrations of Amazon Cognito are with the AWS services. It easily integrates with AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, AWS Amplify, and more, allowing for comprehensive and cohesive identity and access management within the AWS ecosystem.


Amazon Cognito pricing starts at $0.00550 per Monthly Active User (MAU) over 50,000 MAUs. For the first 50,000 MAUs, it's free.


  • Strong integration with AWS services
  • Provides data synchronization across devices
  • Customizable user sign-up and sign-in UIs


  • Complexity of AWS services might pose a challenge for newcomers
  • Pricing can escalate with increased users
  • Less suitable for non-AWS environments

10. Frontegg - Best for rapid SaaS integrations

Frontegg user's audit logs
Here's an overview of the Frontegg user's audit logs.

Frontegg is a platform that offers pre-built, scalable user management and authentication functionality, which can be quickly integrated into SaaS applications. This makes it particularly useful for SaaS providers who want to accelerate the integration of essential security features.

Why I Picked Frontegg:

I chose Frontegg because of its focus on offering pre-built functionalities for SaaS applications. In my analysis, Frontegg differentiates itself with its comprehensive suite of SaaS-ready capabilities, allowing providers to save on development time. This makes it best for rapid SaaS integrations, facilitating quicker application time-to-market.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Frontegg offers many features such as multi-factor authentication, role-based access control, and customizable onboarding experiences. Furthermore, Frontegg includes audit logs, compliance, and a notification center, providing a complete suite of user management tools. Frontegg integrates with Slack, Zendesk, and other SaaS platforms, making it adaptable for companies using multiple tools.


Frontegg pricing starts from $500/month, providing access to their entire suite of services. It is billed annually, and a custom quote can be requested for larger needs.


  • SaaS-ready capabilities for quick integration
  • Comprehensive feature set covering all aspects of user management
  • Integrates well with various popular SaaS platforms


  • Not as suitable for non-SaaS applications
  • Higher starting price point compared to some competitors
  • Pricing is only available on an annual basis

11. Okta Customer Identity - Best for diverse application compatibility

Okta Customer Identity authorization servers view
Okta's admin console manages all authorization, authentication, and user management.

Okta Customer Identity is a suite of cloud-based services designed to manage and secure user authentication across various applications. Its vast ecosystem makes it especially suitable for organizations that deal with a diverse set of applications.

Why I Picked Okta Customer Identity:

In my selection process, I identified Okta Customer Identity as a standout due to its extensive ecosystem. This broad compatibility range makes it versatile and able to meet the needs of organizations with diverse application portfolios. Hence, it is best for diverse application compatibility, offering one unified solution for various application types.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Okta's key features include adaptive multi-factor authentication, lifecycle management, and an easily navigable user interface. These elements contribute to a robust security posture without sacrificing user experience.

Okta provides comprehensive integrations, covering over 6,000 pre-integrated apps. This encompasses typical cloud-based applications like Salesforce, Google Workspace, and Microsoft 365, ensuring smooth interoperability.


Okta Customer Identity pricing begins at $2/user/month. It should be noted that this is the starting cost for the entry-level package, with more advanced features available at higher price points.


  • Broad range of pre-integrated applications
  • Robust security features such as adaptive multi-factor authentication
  • Good user interface


  • The base price may not include all desired features
  • Could be overkill for organizations with simpler application portfolios
  • Some customization features may require technical expertise

12. Stytch - Best for passwordless authentication

Stytch's tool sample
This is a screen capture from Stytch's software for passwordless authentication.

Stytch offers passwordless authentication for developers, prioritizing security and user experience.

Why I Picked Stytch:

I picked Stytch for this list after assessing its unique approach to user authentication. It stands out by prioritizing passwordless authentication, an emerging trend that has significant potential in enhancing security and user convenience. With this in mind, Stytch is best for organizations that want to leverage passwordless authentication in their applications.

Standout Features & Integrations:

Stytch offers multiple passwordless authentication methods, including email magic links, SMS passcodes, and OAuth with Google. These options allow developers to decide the best fit for their application. As for integrations, Stytch offers SDKs and APIs for popular languages like Python, Node.js, and Go. It also supports webhooks for real-time notifications about authentication events.


Stytch follows a pay-as-you-go pricing model. They charge $0.01 per SMS and email verification, making it affordable for startups and small businesses.


  • Provides passwordless authentication, enhancing user convenience and security
  • Offers multiple methods of passwordless authentication, offering flexibility
  • Provides SDKs and APIs for easy integration


  • No conventional username/password option, which may be preferred by some users
  • Cost per verification could add up quickly for larger user bases
  • Relatively new, therefore, less tested by large enterprises

Other Noteworthy CIAM Solutions

Below is a list of additional CIAM solutions that I shortlisted but did not make it to the top 12. Definitely worth checking them out.

  1. Ping Identity - Good for adaptive multi-factor authentication
  2. Auth0 - Good for robust and scalable user identity solutions
  3. Memberstack - Good for membership management for websites
  4. ForgeRock - Good for comprehensive identity and access management
  5. Akamai Identity Cloud - Good for customer identity and access management at scale
  6. Azure Active Directory B2C - Good for organizations needing Microsoft ecosystem integration
  7. LoginRadius - Good for businesses seeking comprehensive customer identity solutions
  8. miniOrange - Good for small businesses needing simplified identity management
  9. RingCaptcha - Good for companies prioritizing phone-based authentication
  10. Descope - Good for developers seeking secure API management
  11. Segment - Good for data-driven companies needing unified customer data
  12. Entrust Identity Enterprises - Good for enterprises seeking strong digital identity security
  13. OptimalCloud - Good for businesses looking for customizable identity solutions
  14. Abowire - Good for subscription-based businesses seeking integrated identity and payment management
  15. Accenture Digital Identity - Good for large corporations requiring bespoke identity solutions

Selection Criteria for Choosing CIAM Solutions

As someone who has evaluated dozens of identity and access management tools, there are key criteria I've found particularly crucial when selecting the right software. I've tried more than 30 tools, and my favorites distinguished themselves in core functionality, key features, and usability. Below, I've outlined the specific factors that influenced my decisions.

Core Functionality

  • User Authentication: The software should offer robust capabilities for verifying user identities during login.
  • Access Control: The tool should enable administrators to easily manage who has access to which resources based on roles or other attributes.
  • Audit and Compliance: The tool should allow easy tracking and reporting of access and activities for audit and compliance purposes.

Key Features

  • Multi-factor Authentication (MFA): This adds an extra layer of security by requiring users to provide at least two forms of identification before they gain access.
  • Single Sign-On (SSO): This feature simplifies the user experience by allowing users to log in once to gain access to multiple applications or services.
  • Identity Federation: This facilitates linking and managing electronic identities across different identity management systems.
  • Risk-Based Authentication: This assesses the risk level of each access request and asks for additional authentication for high-risk requests.
  • User Provisioning: This allows administrators to create, manage, and delete user accounts and their access to various systems or services.


  • Intuitive Interface: A clean and clear dashboard is crucial for identity management tools. Administrators need a quick summary of user activities, system status, and potential issues.
  • Easy Onboarding: The software should have a straightforward setup process with clear documentation or guided setup. Complexity in this area can lead to configuration errors and potential security risks.
  • Quality Customer Support: This should be available 24/7 due to the critical nature of identity and access management. Users should expect responsive, knowledgeable support that can assist with any issues or security concerns.
  • Configurable Role-Based Access: As the needs of businesses evolve, a tool must allow easy configuration of user roles and permissions. This flexibility is crucial, particularly for growing or changing organizations.
  • Training Materials: Given the complexity of identity management, having an accessible learning library, tutorial videos, or a knowledge base is valuable for training users and administrators.

Most Common Questions Regarding CIAM Solutions (FAQs)

What are the benefits of using CIAM solutions?

  1. Improved Security: CIAM platforms offer robust features like Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) and Risk-Based Authentication (RBA) to secure user data and prevent unauthorized access.
  2. Simplified User Experience: Single Sign-On (SSO) and social login features enable users to access multiple services using one set of credentials, enhancing the user experience.
  3. Scalability: CIAM solutions can easily adapt to handle large volumes of identities, making them perfect for businesses experiencing rapid growth or high traffic.
  4. Compliance Support: These tools often include audit and reporting features that meet data privacy regulations and standards like GDPR, CCPA, and ISO 27001.
  5. Improved Personalization: By consolidating user data in one place, CIAM solutions enable businesses to understand their customers better and personalize the user experience accordingly.

How much do CIAM solutions typically cost?

Pricing for CIAM solutions varies widely based on the provider, the features included, and the number of users. Some providers offer a free plan or a free trial period, while others have pricing models that start at around $2 per user/month and can go up to $50 per user/month or more for enterprise-level solutions.

What are the typical pricing models for CIAM solutions?

CIAM solutions often adopt a tiered pricing model where the cost increases with additional features or a higher number of users. Some also offer volume discounts for businesses with a large number of users. Others might use a pay-as-you-go model where you're charged based on actual usage.

What is the cheapest CIAM solution?

While pricing can vary, Auth0 is among the most affordable CIAM solutions, with a basic plan starting at $23 per month.

What is the most expensive CIAM solution?

On the higher end of the spectrum, solutions like Ping Identity can cost up to $50 per user/month for advanced enterprise-level features.

Are there any free CIAM solution options?

Yes, some CIAM providers offer free options. For instance, Auth0 has a free tier with basic features like 7,000 free active users & unlimited logins. However, an upgrade to a paid plan is typically required to access more advanced features.


Choosing the right CIAM solution is essential for managing and securing your customer identities while enhancing the user experience. Your decision should align with your needs, considering factors like core functionality, key features, usability, pricing, and the overall user experience.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Prioritize Core Functionality: Ensure the chosen CIAM solution delivers essential functionality like Single Sign-On (SSO), Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA), and social login features. It should also offer scalability to accommodate business growth.
  2. Don't Overlook Usability: User experience plays a significant role in the effectiveness of a CIAM solution. Look for intuitive design, simple onboarding, and responsive customer support.
  3. Consider Value for Money: While pricing is an important consideration, don't let cost alone drive your decision. Aim to find a solution that offers the features and benefits you need at a price that fits your budget. Know the pricing model and understand what you get at each pricing tier.

What do you think?

I've put much effort into compiling this list, but I’m always open to new suggestions. If you think there's a CIAM solution that should be on this list, please let me know! I value your insights and experiences.

By Paulo Gardini Miguel

Paulo is the Director of Technology at the rapidly growing media tech company BWZ. Prior to that, he worked as a Software Engineering Manager and then Head Of Technology at Navegg, Latin America’s largest data marketplace, and as Full Stack Engineer at MapLink, which provides geolocation APIs as a service. Paulo draws insight from years of experience serving as an infrastructure architect, team leader, and product developer in rapidly scaling web environments. He’s driven to share his expertise with other technology leaders to help them build great teams, improve performance, optimize resources, and create foundations for scalability.