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The need for online communities? No rants

  • oliverm


    Hi all

    We’re debating whether we should set up an online community on our site. We have a very active G+ community and a semi-decent FB page going on.

    However I’m aware, from a purely brutal point of view, that such interactions do the users a world of good but don’t necessarily bring them to our site. In a recent survey we found that a great deal of our community users had never even come to our site. As a result we miss out on the pageviews that prove to our advertisers and content providers that we are worth committing to. Brutal, but then that’s what I’m paid for in the business.

    I’m also aware, because I’m human, that people are likely coming to our social communities BECAUSE they don’t have to come to our site and because it’s provided within the context of the environment that they are most comfortable with (Facebook or G+ as they prefer).

    Hence I wonder whether, even looking at pageviews, setting up our own online community is really worth investing the time and money in.

    I’m really interested in peoples thoughts about this. Clearly you are all BuddyPress users and admins here, so probably are already using it to run sites and thus are already semi-biased but I’d love to hear your thoughts, views and the like.



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  • heilyn


    I think that’s good idea! On the other hand, most users now likes to go on social community than online community. Maybe, because its easy to chat people on our contact list in social community.

    For me BP is most useful where there is a specific need for either privacy or specific features that are not available directly with services like FB or G+.

    We use BP for document sharing and creating groups based around discussion of those documents and BP works very well. I am not sure what your use case is but I would suggest that you look at what it is you want the users to do that they cannot with social networks. You have already identified that users stick with what they are used to so it may be that BP is not for you.

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