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Forum Structure

Discussion in 'Forum Management' started by Blue chummer, Apr 5, 2014.

  1. Blue chummer

    Blue chummer Active Member

    Hi Everyone.
    Ok I am on day 4 of my Xen Foro take over the saltwater fishing world plan :)
    I Have been busy using Xaamp to design my nodes with many topics pretty well imputted and somewhat organized. I have been finding that while I am organizing my Nodes/topics that I have been getting mad rushes on creativity and Ideas- I wasn't expecting that as it seems like my mind has been toast for too long.

    Had some questions:
    1- Any suggestions to what works or doesn't in regards to forum structure(what to put where?
    2-Classifieds near the top or the bottom? (classifieds get a ton of action on the fishing boards)
    3- I have a lot of nodes(over 500 and counting) but basically 10 or 11 main catagories. any suggestions as to if too much is a bad thing? most of the nodes are child nodes so the list isn't crazy long at all on the main forum page.
    4- Home pages and other pages. I am going to have a great home page(I hope) and do you think I should come out of the gate with other pages or wait till I get the site going /live first?


    thanks for your help

    Blue Chummer
     
  2. TeflonDon

    TeflonDon Well-Known Member

    1) your most popular nodes should be on the top for easy access
    2) i've always seen classifieds near the bottom of forums. you could add a nav bar link to the classifieds forum. check out Nodes as Tabs
    3) 500 nodes seems like a lot. i cant imagine trying to navigate a forum with that many. id suggest cutting that number down quite a bit and trying to simplify things. a few forums with lots of topics is more attractive than having a lot of forums without many topics
    4) depends on the other pages and if they look completed and add quality content to your forum. you should want your site to look complete, not under construction
     
  3. thedude

    thedude Well-Known Member

    Launching a site with too many subforums will make it look extremely inactive and empty to anyone browsing the various nodes. It's better to launch with more general subforums then split them into more specific ones as the site gets busier.
     
    DeviateDefiant and Jeremy P like this.
  4. Blue chummer

    Blue chummer Active Member

    thanks Guys. I know you are both right about the having too many subforums. I worked it so there are only like 9 catagories. and maybe 50 sub catagories. On several of the sub catagoires I have brands-that is where most of the nodes come into play. you wont see them unless you click on the subforum.
    example:
    Category - fishing tackle
    -sub category- Reels - then you would see the 40 or so reel brands.

    Category- boats
    -sub - boats brands and owners area then you would get the 30/40 major saltwater boat brands


    the main forum page is pretty uncluttered. But you are right , I need to limit things for now- such as classifieds- cant really have classifieds on a new site too much etc.
     
  5. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    As has been said elsewhere, you might be better using prefixes in some forums rather than have a whole bunch of sub-forums. That'll help users easily identify what brand (for example) a thread relates to and could look better than a lot of empty sub-forums.
     
    Steve F likes this.
  6. Blue chummer

    Blue chummer Active Member

    I like the prefix ideas for certain catagories.
    Is there a way to just had a brand image/logo instead of prefix button for each one.

    Instead of just having a shimano, diawa, okuma etc prefix banner. I would want to use their actual logos to click on ?
     
  7. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    I think you would need an add-on for that. I'm not sure if one exists - check the Resources section. If not, you'll have to request custom development.
     
  8. Steve F

    Steve F Well-Known Member

    You can use images for prefixes. Just takes some css work. Can't describe it any better right now as I'm on my phone but would be glad to help guide in the right direction.

    As for the nodes, prefixes is definitely the way to go

    "Spinning Reels" for the main node name then prefix your brands - Shimano, Diawa, etc...

    That way users can sort by prefix easily.
     
  9. Blue chummer

    Blue chummer Active Member

    Hi Steve , thanks the prefixes idea sounds great for 10 or less prefixes I am just curious how it would look with 40-50? I haven't really seen a established forum yet that has this in place. Do you know of any off the top of your head so I can see the functionality of it ? thanks

    Andre
     
  10. Russ

    Russ Well-Known Member

    Haven't seen forums use that many, on our customer section we use them, I've duplicated the code via firebug to get your an example.

    prefixes.jpg

    Of course my prefixes look bad :D but hope you can get the general idea.
     
  11. Blue chummer

    Blue chummer Active Member

    thanks Russ I appreciate it. I haven't forgotten about you , sending you a pm.

    Its a interesting concept. Have the prefixes with a logo instead of a banner that clicks to their own page/forum.

    .
     
  12. Tracy Perry

    Tracy Perry Well-Known Member

    Yes, just define a custom CSS for the prefix using the logo image. Not that hard to do and there are some resources here that show how to do them.

    EDIT:

    Knew there was one out there
    http://xenforo.com/community/resources/replace-prefixes-with-images.1670/

    No need to download his image pack... create your own images and just modify the CSS code to fit for them.
     

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