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Which option would you choose to manage quiet subforums?

Discussion in 'Forum Management' started by Stuart Wright, Aug 23, 2015.

  1. Stuart Wright

    Stuart Wright Well-Known Member

    We have a couple of forums which have several subforums which are too quiet to justify keeping them:
    Bargains & Discount Codes | AVForums (actually this is a whole category)
    Mobile Phones Forum

    As I see it, there are three options:
    1. retain the subforums for the organisational and SEO benefits (of having them appear in the breadcrumb of Google search results) but use a digest view as per Forum Digest by Waindigo which would show all the threads from all the subforums in one list by default but with some styling changes in order to present the threads like you see them at Florida Forum, Travel Discussion for Florida – TripAdvisor with a small drop-down of the sub forums above the thread list plus the forum of the thread shown in a separate left-hand column. Disadvantage is that we still have lots of quiet forums.
    2. delete the subforums and use prefixes. Set up a bunch of prefixes named the same as the forums and batch update the existing threads in those forums to give them the appropriate prefixes. Move all the threads from all the subforums up into the parent forum and delete the subforums. The prefixes are obvious in the thread list and allow easy filtering on a prefix basis. Also prefixes are obvious when creating a new thread in the parent forum. Disadvantage is that we lose the benefit of having the subforums for SEO purposes. And we have a problem because we currently use a Question prefix to enable the Best Answer system. Someone wanting to ask a question about a particular make of phone would have to pick between, say, iPhone and Question prefixes. One or the other. I don't like the idea of having multiple prefixes, so I wouldn't install the addon which allows that.
    3. delete the subforums and use tags. Batch update the threads with tags corresponding to the forum name they are in. Move them up to the parent forum. Delete the subforums. Tags have the advantage of allowing multiple tags per thread and I feel tags is a neater solution than prefixes. Disadvantage is that tags are not as obvious when creating a new thread or filtering content you want within a forum. And again we lose the subforums.

    Which would you choose? Or are there alternative solutions?
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2015
  2. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Option 3. Use tags instead of nodes. But prominently advertise the popular tags of the parent node. This way people can still find their way to the content quickly.
  3. RoldanLT

    RoldanLT Well-Known Member

    More organize.
  4. Stuart Wright

    Stuart Wright Well-Known Member

    This is where I'm leaning. Is anyone doing this already? Any inspiration on the presentation?
  5. Xon

    Xon Well-Known Member

    I was planning on showing some sort of filterable tag-cloud at the top of each forum, to allow easily showing threads by a given set of tags (or exclusions). Not sure if it would be a more traditional forum list, or search-based.

    I just haven't had time to finalise the design and implement it.
    Fred. and rafass like this.

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