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How to get more visitors?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by kuyenmotdivad, May 26, 2011.

  1. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member


    I have been running my website now for about 1 month and don't seem to be getting many people registering on my website, there seems to be some visitors coming and going but no signup's. any idea why and how I can get my site active?
  2. Kaiser

    Kaiser Well-Known Member

    Well just by going to your forum I can see you dont have much content and there are empty forums which can be why.

    When you have a small forum its the admin's job to get it of the ground and fill in the sections with content. I also see you have the default theme which not too appealing for a General Discussion forum when there are alot of nice styles available.

    There are thousands of General discussion forums so you have to set yourself apart from the others and be unique, or members wont have a reason to join. The biggest turn of on your forum is the empty sections which you should start filling in.

    Hope this helps (y)
    Kim and kuyenmotdivad like this.
  3. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

    Thanks a lot Kaiser will do.
    Kaiser likes this.
  4. CyclingTribe

    CyclingTribe Well-Known Member

    Discussions: 7
    Messages: 122
    Members: 2

    This is a big part of the problem. 2 people and only 7 discussions. It's not going to encourage people to register.

    If you're already bringing people to the site, then you need - as Kaiser has suggested - to get some content into the forums to give people something to see/read, and a reason to stay there and register.

    One simple thing you can do is post questions rather than statements. You'd think that would be common sense, but I see a lot of new forum admins posting things on their site that don't invite the reader to respond in any way. A question encourages people to say something, post their opinion, want to register to get involved in a discussion.

    Here's a simple illustration of what I mean:

    Hmmm ... well, okay, that's great. I've read you opinion, and I might even agree with it, but, well, what now? I'm not going to register to post "Me too!". So how do we turn that around to encourage someone to post a reply?

    Almost the same as the statement above, but instead of just saying something, it now asks for a response. It asks you to think about a reply. About telling us your fave X-Men character, and what makes them special to you. It asks for your opinion. For some feedback. For some interaction.

    You can use this, combined with a few pseudo-user accounts, to create some conversations that will invite people to respond.

    I'm not suggesting you create masses of fake accounts, or use them in any sort of harmful way, but it takes more than one person to have a conversation, so by creating a handful of "personalities" for your board, you make an environment that invites people to join in.

    Don't get me wrong, it's incredibly hard to get forums going, but take your time, keep posting content, keep building up the different discussion areas and eventually you will get it going.

    My first forum took me two and a half years to get going. It was an incredibly slow start. My latest one is growing at a much faster rate than my first, with better quality content, a small band of committed regulars (who've all now been promoted to mods - which makes them stick around and feel more involved) and I expect to be at the same level my first one was within 4 months this time around.

    Be patient, keep posting new content, and keep popping back here to pick up tips and advice from other forum owners. I've learned loads just hanging about on the outskirts and picking people's brains (in a nice way of course ... lol).

    Good luck with it.

    Shaun :D
  5. TheLaw

    TheLaw Well-Known Member

    Let me ask you this two part question -- and I had the same conversation yesterday with someone else:

    Why should anyone care to invest time registering at your site to discuss "general stuff"? Do they not have a million other places to do the same?

    This is not intended as an insult but just the reality of the Internet. Unless you give them a good reason to join, most won't care to waste time doing so. Additionally, what does "off topic" mean? Most people want to have on topic discussions and "off topic" is a catch phrase to say "anything else other than the reason we are here goes here." People are searching for something - not for everything else but what they are looking for. I think you need to identify your forum with something - ask yourself this and share this with the visitors:

    What is the reason for my forum's existence?
    kuyenmotdivad likes this.
  6. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

    its a general discussions forum and i could not think of another domain name which wasn't taken, How about have a compitition where the winner gets a prize for posting contents?
  7. CyclingTribe

    CyclingTribe Well-Known Member

    I'm not convinced you're really interested in listening? :whistle:

    If you're going to skip right over the advice of seasoned site owners and plumb for a competition as a quick-fix to get your site going, well, then, go for it. Good luck with that. Just remember what we've said when the competition is over, the prize winner has run for the hills (along with everyone who lost) and you still don't have any content to encourage people to join.

    It takes hard work. There are no short cuts. You need focus and you need content. Quality content. If you don't have that, then no amount of gimmicks are going to help you. If no one else is currently writing that content, the you have to. You have to put the work in to get it going. You have to encourage people to join and post, and you have to take care of your regulars and keep them interested so they continue to add content and encourage new people to join.

    Good luck.

    Shaun :D

    PS. What's the prize BTW? :ROFLMAO:
    Trombones13, TheLaw and kuyenmotdivad like this.
  8. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

    I did listen to you guys dont get me wrong, I took into account your advice of adding more contents which I will do but I thought a compatition per month would also help dont you think?

    The prize is a packet of rolo's....i'm joking I dont know yet - ideas?
  9. Forsaken

    Forsaken Well-Known Member

    You need more members and more content before a competition, otherwise people will join just for the competition and then leave.

    Without anything to keep them there, they won't stay.
  10. mjp

    mjp Well-Known Member

    And before placing ads all over your forum.

    I would ask anyone with ads on their site the same question: is the $1.12 you're raking in every month worth turning away potential users? I can only speak for myself, but I would leave a "general discussion" forum that put ads in my face before I'd even take a look around.

    Okay, I was lying a little bit. I would never go to a "general discussion" forum, period, but that's neither here nor there.

    Always remember; ads are for sites with large numbers of visitors, and coffee is for closers.
    Mikey, Dan, Kim and 3 others like this.
  11. Deepmartini

    Deepmartini Well-Known Member

    It's simply too generic. Your forum needs to be focused and specialized on a "target market". Being everything to everybody ultimately makes the site unappealing. People want to feel that they are part of a special group with like-minded people they can relate to. All of the subjects of the forum can easy be discussed on other sites that are more focused on that subject. My advice is to look at what INTERESTS YOU, then create a specialized forum around that. You'll be more excited and encouraged to get the forum going and will have an IDENTIFIED MARKET that you can go after. Make a list of your hobbies and interests, see what the competition has to offer, then make your forum better than theirs. This is where you should start.
  12. CyclingTribe

    CyclingTribe Well-Known Member

    Where do I sign-up? ... lol

    Glad the advice is helpful, and it is difficult getting going ... and quite frustrating too, especially when you're all keyed-up but don't have any activity at your site.

    I think others on the thread have a very good point though. You need to think about focusing your site on something less general.

    You could turn off-topic on its head and create forums/threads about taboo things maybe, or different cultural niches ... things that you don't find on other general chat forums, stuff that's a bit out of the ordinary. I don't know what the answer is really, but have a good think about how you can add a "twist" to your site and content that makes it a little bit different.

    It's a sort of generic domain name, so you could easily bend it to whatever "theme" you like.

    Shaun :D
  13. Ingenious

    Ingenious Well-Known Member

    One thing that would put me off joining your forum is the adverts. A forum with as few posts as yours and which is looking for more visitors maybe needs to ditch the adverts and focus on your members and community first. The time to start adding adverts and taking up screen space and/or distracting people is when you have enough traffic to justify it. As an example I have just viewed your site and there's a huge banner advert at the top advertising Yola and at the bottom is a hideous flashing advert offering me free smilies. First impressions are so important. If I think the only purpose of a site is to generate advertising income I lose interest immediately.

    Why not use all that space to promote your site and content instead? Then when you reach tens of thousands of threads, start adding adverts? :) Remember - just my opinion and constructive criticism, don't take it personally.
    Kim and kuyenmotdivad like this.
  14. Kaiser

    Kaiser Well-Known Member

    I make a good amount from selling adspace and it pays for hosting and other things. When I had adsense I also made a good amount from it, but I make much more from selling adpsace.

    And I agree there shouldnt be ads on a new forum. I didnt start having ads on my forum till I got decent traffic which was along time ago. And if you do have ads makes sure it doesnt get in the way of content.

    @kuyenmotdivad, your first add messes up the layout and goes over to the sidebar, a reason for me to just close my browser as it shows you dont care much about. I suggest you replace it with a 468x60 ad instead. And it probably has to do with the size of my monitor as seeing your style is fluid, but you should cater for everyone and be sure that its fine for everyone.

  15. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

    Even if the adverts go away when you signup and login - the ads are only for guests?
  16. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

    Is it working good now?
    Kaiser likes this.
  17. Kaiser

    Kaiser Well-Known Member

    Yea much better. Although I still think you have ads way too early.. should wait for atleast 120+ members and 5000+ posts before considering them.
  18. kuyenmotdivad

    kuyenmotdivad Active Member

  19. TheLaw

    TheLaw Well-Known Member

    If your answer is that it's because you put up yet another general forum, then you've got a lot of work ahead of you and, yes, you'll need to bribe people to register. But then you'll still have a problem -- after the prize is gone so will their attention.

    So how many general forums are you a member of and would you join someone else's general forum and participate there?
  20. jonsidneyb

    jonsidneyb Well-Known Member

    I don't know what the secret to growth is. I had many people tell me my forum would not grow but it did. It just did, don't have a clue as to why. I did everything wrong.

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