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View Full Version : Making my website more interesting



doubledee
03-04-2012, 11:20 PM
I could use some ideas on how to make my website more interesting, i.e. how to motivate people to keep coming back.

I am trying to come up with ideas that make my website more interactive/dynamic and also try and build an online community which will motivate users to make friends and contribute.

(My website is about Small-Business.)


Current Features:
- Browse Articles
- Create an Account
- Activate an Account
- Log In
- Log Out
- Change Password
- Reset Password
- Upload Photo
* Add Comments (i.e. Posts) to Articles


Potential New Features:
* Create a Profile (Similar to an Account, but with more details, photos, etc.)
- Change User Details (e.g. E-mail, Username, Name, Location, etc.)
- View My Posts
* Send/Receive Private Messages (PM's)
* User Forums
- Create/Manage User Preferences (e.g. Interested in Tax and Legal Articles)
- Add WYSIWYG Editor for adding Comments
- Others??

What do you think?

Thanks,


Debbie

mlseim
03-05-2012, 01:55 AM
Is it for small business in your community, state, or are your demographics nation-wide?

I think you might have to narrow it down to a unique demographic ... not making
it too generic. I've thought about creating an LLC for myself, but the process
seems daunting. Maybe you can be a place to find out the steps, and help out in
some way. But it might have to be "area specific". The LLC process in Minnesota
might be different than Arizona.

Maybe you can specialize in small business for women, or for "under 25", something
that gives yourself a niche that people can't really find anywhere else.

Connect small business owners with people interested in starting a small business.

Stuff like that.

That's my thoughts anyhow.


.

doubledee
03-05-2012, 02:47 AM
Is it for small business in your community, state, or are your demographics nation-wide?

I think you might have to narrow it down to a unique demographic ... not making
it too generic. I've thought about creating an LLC for myself, but the process
seems daunting. Maybe you can be a place to find out the steps, and help out in
some way. But it might have to be "area specific". The LLC process in Minnesota
might be different than Arizona.

Maybe you can specialize in small business for women, or for "under 25", something
that gives yourself a niche that people can't really find anywhere else.

Connect small business owners with people interested in starting a small business.

Stuff like that.

That's my thoughts anyhow.

Huh?????

What does that have to do with my original post??? :confused:


(Um, I didn't ask anything about what business to start. I was just asking - generically - what kinds of Features do Users expect on websites these days.)


Debbie

Fumigator
03-05-2012, 07:37 AM
Did you happen to notice what you said your website was about? Small Business. Mlseim suggested you put some good content on your website pertaining to Small Business. God forbid you have relevant interesting content for your visitors to enjoy. A WYSIWYG editor won't get people coming back... a website with good content will.

doubledee
03-05-2012, 08:31 AM
Did you happen to notice what you said your website was about? Small Business. Mlseim suggested you put some good content on your website pertaining to Small Business. God forbid you have relevant interesting content for your visitors to enjoy. A WYSIWYG editor won't get people coming back... a website with good content will.

Going to tell me "water is wet" next?? :)

Good content is not a "Feature" - in this context - so why are we still talking about it??

User Accounts is a "feature".

Being able to post comments is a "feature".

Being W3C compliant is a "feature".


Debbie

TheElect2049
03-05-2012, 08:32 AM
You could maybe make a point system? Point systems always draw me in

doubledee
03-05-2012, 08:33 AM
You could maybe make a point system? Point systems always draw me in

What are we keeping points on?


Debbie

webdev1958
03-05-2012, 01:07 PM
I am trying to come up with ideas that make my website more interactive/dynamic.....

why not post a link to your current website?

Just saying it is about small business doesn't mean much at all without seeing the site regarding suggesting features to improve it.

Without seeing the site you could say it's about losing weight or whatever else you like, and the suggestions would probaly be the same.

Basically content is still king. You can have all the flashy bells and whistles functionality you like, but if the site is full of rubbish why would anyone want to come back?

mlseim
03-05-2012, 02:20 PM
Create a whole bunch of animated .gif images.
Make them all move around the page.
Dancing Hamsters might really make people like your website.
The movement will motivate people to browse your site.

.
.
.
.

OMG, nobody cares about features.
They'll visit your site repeatedly and tell others about it if what they read (content) is valuable information.
.
.
.
period.


If you don't have any good information to share,
go with the dancing hamsters.


EDIT:
In all seriousness now ... no more sarcasm, I swear.
This small business site seems to have features you might want to look at:
http://www.partnerup.com/


.

doubledee
03-05-2012, 06:39 PM
why not post a link to your current website?

Because it is still on my laptop! :D



Just saying it is about small business doesn't mean much at all without seeing the site regarding suggesting features to improve it.

I shouldn't have even said what my site was about.

Sure, it might help to see an actual site, but my original question was meant to be *abstract*. That is, "What kinds of features make a website more interactive and interesting and make people want to return and are pretty common among all modern website?"

For example, I think most of use would expect the ability to create an account, log in, log out, etc if the website has the concept of "Membership". In this day and age, I would think having the ability to leave comments is pretty standard too. (That is why I just added all of those to my site!)

For what I am looking for, it shouldn't matter if my website is for plumbers or on small business or on web design.

The over-arching theme is that my website is content-heavy and I want to entice people to keep coming back to my site.

Make sense?



Without seeing the site you could say it's about losing weight or whatever else you like, and the suggestions would probaly be the same.

Exactly.



Basically content is still king. You can have all the flashy bells and whistles functionality you like, but if the site is full of rubbish why would anyone want to come back?

I agree, but I am also finding out that GREAT CONTENT alone is not enough in 2012.

In 1995, if you had stellar content you'd be a millionaire.

In 2012, people expect your website to be Interactive, have a Social Media Angle, have A/V, and so on.

I have read and heard time and time again where "Content is not enough".

So I am trying to figure out what I need to add to my already great content to make it the next FaceBook or YouTube or Google.


Debbie

doubledee
03-05-2012, 07:32 PM
Create a whole bunch of animated .gif images.
Make them all move around the page.
Dancing Hamsters might really make people like your website.
The movement will motivate people to browse your site.

Sarcasm won't help this conversation.




OMG, nobody cares about features.

I get the distinct feeling that you don't know what a "feature" is...



They'll visit your site repeatedly and tell others about it if what they read (content) is valuable information.
.
.
.
period.

It's not that simple in 2012.




If you don't have any good information to share,
go with the dancing hamsters.

See above.




EDIT:
In all seriousness now ... no more sarcasm, I swear.
This small business site seems to have features you might want to look at:
http://www.partnerup.com/.

How about a list of Features that YOU would like to see or maybe even expect on websites you frequent?


Debbie

webdev1958
03-05-2012, 10:19 PM
Because it is still on my laptop! :D


But so what?

Even if you don't have a domain name registered yet, you can still upload it to a temporary free hosting account.

Without seeing your site, any feature I suggest might be inappropriate for your site but totally appropriate for another site and so I don't see the point in spending time making a suggestion under this circumstance.

mlseim
03-05-2012, 11:00 PM
I already gave my official answer:
http://www.partnerup.com/

I realize I'm not say what I think the features should be,
but I just discovered that small business website, and I'm
already interested in going back to find out more about it.

They have some good features ... in regards to a forum type
system with social interaction. Seems to me like I might find
some good information there (content). If the content is
what I'm looking for, I'll return back many times.

@Debbie ...
I know you don't just want to copy someone else's small business site,
but look at the features other sites use. It's such a personal thing and
what I like may not be what you like. Again, the features they have
will allow me to interact with other small business owners ... yet, I'm
really hoping for some good, accurate content. Without that, no amount
of features will make me want to return.

I just think your original post is too ambiguous.

doubledee
03-06-2012, 04:46 AM
I already gave my official answer:
http://www.partnerup.com/

I realize I'm not say what I think the features should be,
but I just discovered that small business website, and I'm
already interested in going back to find out more about it.

So why that site?

What attracts you to it?

What features do you like?



@Debbie ...
I know you don't just want to copy someone else's small business site,
but look at the features other sites use. It's such a personal thing and
what I like may not be what you like. Again, the features they have
will allow me to interact with other small business owners ... yet, I'm
really hoping for some good, accurate content. Without that, no amount
of features will make me want to return.

I looked at your link and wasn't impressed.

The site looks one-dimensional with no clear message of what it does, no features that stand out, and it lacks CONTENT.

Honestly all I see is a bunch of "wannabees" looking for business partners to start up questionable sounding companies like...


i am in the business of buying and selling foreclosures,Reo, short sales.


I am not from Boca, Fl., but from the Philippines.


Experienced Nightclub Owner looking for Partners for a New Gig.


CUT YOUR PUCHASING COST BY HALF, FOR ANY BUSINESS.

Oh brother?! :rolleyes:


Debbie

mlseim
03-06-2012, 01:27 PM
I surrender. :(


I'll stick to PHP scripting.

SB65
03-06-2012, 02:03 PM
Interesting thread...

Thinking about what would make me want to go back to a site, in order:

- Useful content, that is updated on a regular basis
- (Maybe, if I'm very interested) the ability to discuss with others

Those are the only two things that would encourage me to re-use a site. Everything else hangs off these then, I think - is the content logically ordered/searchable etc etc. Is the site easily navigable? If there are issue with these latter elements then that's a reason not to go back.

Re all the log in/create profile etc - maybe, but only if there's worthwhile discussion/content going on - otherwise why would I need to log on? Don't use any social media myself, but if there's a logon and I can use my existing profile, that's nice, I suppose.

I actually think it is still down to content, personally. If the content's worthwhile, I might be prepared to put up with quite a lot of other things being wrong. If it's not, I don't care how easy it is to use or what bells and whistles it has, because I won't be returning.

Thinking further about what sites I've used heavily in the last week and why:

This site - it's for the content. I can log on/search/use the forum, not bothered about anything else really. It's not the most web 2.0 site in the world (sorry George..). I don't care.

BBC News - I read it for the news (unbiased, authoritative). It's changed lots since I started using it in the 90s, but I only use it for the content. If it had no moving images and looked less nice, I'd still use it.

My bank - interesting one - no choice in this one without changing bank. They've spent an awful lot of money making the site look nicer and adding features. This makes the site less usable for the basic stuff.

Morningstar (fund information) - lots of features, but I just use it for looking at fund performance. Used to use iii.co.uk which does much the same thing, but Morningstar is easier to navigate so I switched.

HMRC site (VAT returns!) - that's about web 0.2, I think, and again I've got no choice, but it's very usable and clear. That late 90s vibe holds no fears for me....

So, after that Joycean stream of consciousness, if there's stuff worth reading, I'll go back, and may be prepared to put up with a few things that aren't perfect about the site. If I've a choice of two sites doing the same thing, things like better navigation, better ordered content will become the determining factor.

I've a feeling that isn't going to help...

doubledee
03-06-2012, 07:52 PM
Interesting thread...

I hope so!



Thinking about what would make me want to go back to a site, in order:

- Useful content, that is updated on a regular basis

Right.



- (Maybe, if I'm very interested) the ability to discuss with others

Okay, we're making some progress! So you feel that "Being able to talk with others (about the website content)" would be a FEATURE you would like/expect.

Go on...



Those are the only two things that would encourage me to re-use a site.

Okay, but let's drill-down...

How would you like to be able to discuss the content?

A User Forum?

Sending PM's to other Members?

Sending E-mails to other Members?

Chatting with other Members?

Would you like to be able to just post a Comment beneath the content (e.g. Article) where the TOPIC IS SET?

Would you like an open Forum where YOU SET THE TOPIC?



Everything else hangs off these then, I think - is the content logically ordered/searchable etc etc.

So now you are telling me that "Have the ability to Search Content" is another FEATURE that you would like?

Is that a "Must have", "Should Have", "Could Have"??

And what kind of Searching?



Is the site easily navigable?

Tell me what that means?!



Re all the log in/create profile etc - maybe, but only if there's worthwhile discussion/content going on - otherwise why would I need to log on?

Well, that is part of my original question...

"What kinds of FEATURES - good, changing Content is a given - would you expect to see so that *if* you create an account, when you come back and log in there are FEATURES that you'd expect to see?!"



Don't use any social media myself, but if there's a logon and I can use my existing profile, that's nice, I suppose.

That is a FEATURE, but since I hate FaceBook, probably one I wouldn't support anytime soon! :)



I actually think it is still down to content, personally.

I bet you $20 that if a website just had interesting content and was PURE TEXT with now Web Design, No Graphics, No A/V, No User Accounts, No way to Talk with Other Users, in general No FEATURES, that you wouldn't be very excited about the site!!


Give me the name of one Wildly Popular Website that fits the description above?! (And something like Google or Craig's List doesn't count.)



If the content's worthwhile, I might be prepared to put up with quite a lot of other things being wrong.

Okay, but let's assume for a second that Debbie knows how to write exciting, informative, relevant, and regular content... :cool:

The purpose of this thread is how to BUILD UPON that foundation...



If it's not, I don't care how easy it is to use or what bells and whistles it has, because I won't be returning.

"Bells & Whistles" are not synonymous with FEATURES.

A "Feature" is so high-level aspect of the website - usually described in "Business-Speak" - which PROVIDES VALUE TO THE END USER.

By that definition, a FEATURE has to make the website better?!

WHAT that Feature is, I can't say. (That's why I'm asking all of you!!)

I have my own ideas about which Features would improve my site and make people visit it initially and then want to come back. But I want to get lots of people suggestions...



Thinking further about what sites I've used heavily in the last week and why:

This site - it's for the content. I can log on/search/use the forum, not bothered about anything else really. It's not the most web 2.0 site in the world (sorry George..). I don't care.

Time out.

You just named some FEATURES...

- Use the Forum (i.e. talk with others)
- Search Content
- Log In (implying you use things like "List of My Posts", "List of My Threads", right??)



BBC News - I read it for the news (unbiased, authoritative). It's changed lots since I started using it in the 90s, but I only use it for the content. If it had no moving images and looked less nice, I'd still use it.

Do you find value in the User Comments sections below each informative Article?

Does the BBC have a "Ticker-Tape" with News Headlines?

Does the BBC have an "Article Carousel"?

Does the BBC have Podcasts?

Does the BBC have Videos?

Does the BBC use Pictures?

Does the BBC have a "Popular Articles" section?

Does the BBC have Market or other real-time data?

Do any of those FEATURES appeal to you beyond the "unbiased, authoritative news"??




My bank - interesting one - no choice in this one without changing bank. They've spent an awful lot of money making the site look nicer and adding features. This makes the site less usable for the basic stuff.

So which FEATURES on your bank's website DETRACT your User Experience?



Morningstar (fund information) - lots of features, but I just use it for looking at fund performance. Used to use iii.co.uk which does much the same thing, but Morningstar is easier to navigate so I switched.

So which FEATURES do you LIKE? Which ones do you NOT LIKE?



HMRC site (VAT returns!) - that's about web 0.2, I think, and again I've got no choice, but it's very usable and clear. That late 90s vibe holds no fears for me....

But which FEATURES do you use and like? (I have no idea what site that is?!)



So, after that Joycean stream of consciousness, if there's stuff worth reading, I'll go back, and may be prepared to put up with a few things that aren't perfect about the site. If I've a choice of two sites doing the same thing, things like better navigation, better ordered content will become the determining factor.

Okay, but we are assuming my website already has all of that!



I've a feeling that isn't going to help...

It is a start!

If you can respond to my inquiries and questions above, that would really help! :)

Thanks for your time so far,


Debbie

SB65
03-06-2012, 08:25 PM
I bet you $20 that if a website just had interesting content and was PURE TEXT with now Web Design, No Graphics, No A/V, No User Accounts, No way to Talk with Other Users, in general No FEATURES, that you wouldn't be very excited about the site!!

You'd be right. But I'd still use it.

Sorry, don't really have the time to respond to all those QUESTIONS.

doubledee
03-07-2012, 06:11 AM
Sorry, don't really have the time to respond to all those QUESTIONS.

Thanks for leaving me hanging...


Debbie

SB65
03-07-2012, 09:58 AM
Right. Just to manage expectations, there will be no further long replies...


So you feel that "Being able to talk with others (about the website content)" would be a FEATURE you would like/expect.

I do on a discussion forum, yes. I like the ability to tag an interesting thread for updates, and search for earlier threads. All the PM stuff and befriending another member etc not bothered about.


Is the site easily navigable?
Tell me what that means?!

Come on....Don't make me think - see book of same name. If there's multiple levels don't make me have to click too many times to go up and down.


"What kinds of FEATURES - good, changing Content is a given - would you expect to see so that *if* you create an account, when you come back and log in there are FEATURES that you'd expect to see?!"

The problem here is that I have only the haziest notion of the audience of your website, but you're asking for a detailed set of requirements (to the extent of MoSCoW) and I can't answer the latter without knowing the former. What I'd expect whan I log on will depend on the website.


"Bells & Whistles" are not synonymous with FEATURES.

I meant that as a euphemism for features, so in my context, they are.


Time out.

What????


Do you find value in the User Comments sections below each informative Article?

Does the BBC have a "Ticker-Tape" with News Headlines?

Does the BBC have an "Article Carousel"?

Does the BBC have Podcasts?

Does the BBC have Videos?

Does the BBC use Pictures?

Does the BBC have a "Popular Articles" section?

Does the BBC have Market or other real-time data?

Do any of those FEATURES appeal to you beyond the "unbiased, authoritative news"??

I'll let you view the site to find the answer to all those. I do look at the images, yes, and sometimes the videos. The rest I don't use.


So which FEATURES on your bank's website DETRACT your User Experience?

The "quick statement" feature (last 5 transactions) makes it harder to get to the full statement option. The list of accounts has very large graphics - like a debit card (why? I know what one looks like...) which makes for more scrolling up and down. These are really usability issues rather than directly features I suppose.


(Morningstar)So which FEATURES do you LIKE? Which ones do you NOT LIKE?

Feel like this is far too specific, but all the performance analysis tools are good, the ability to save your own portfolio is useful. There are numerous other features I don't use but which I don't dislike, if that makes sense.


(HMRC)But which FEATURES do you use and like? (I have no idea what site that is?!)

HM Revenue and Customs - UK tax site. Again feel like this is far too specific a question to help - there are numerous transactions associated with running a business - I use all these that apply.

Having typed all this I doubt this has given you anything useful. I go back to the question about the purpose and audience of the site - without knowing this it feels a bit like "what features do you want in a car?" - which depends on the main use of the car. This would vary considerably if I wanted to use it to 1) attract members of the opposite sex 2)transport my disabled mother in law 3) carry two fully dressed french peasants, wearing their hats, with their produce, over bumpy roads to the market (which I believe was the spec for the 2CV).

I hope that helps, but suspect it doesn't. Maybe you could expand on your proposed site and list your proposed features, and ask for comments on that?

Sorry, you've already done the latter - still don't really know what the website's for though.

doubledee
03-07-2012, 10:55 AM
I hope that helps, but suspect it doesn't. Maybe you could expand on your proposed site and list your proposed features, and ask for comments on that?

Sorry, you've already done the latter - still don't really know what the website's for though.

It is a website on Small-Business and helping people start their own small business.

The site will be heavy on well thought out and researched content - like the BBC.

At almost 4:00am, what features do I want?

Well, I think these would make sense...

- User Accounts (i.e. Username, Email, Password)
- User Profiles (i.e. Photo, Bio, Interests, Preferences)
- Ability to Comment on Articles (build a "community")
- Show User Summary and Online Status next to Comments
- Ability to PM another Member (build social aspect)
- Rank Posters (e.g. Top Contributor)
- Rank Comments (e.g. Most Helpful)
- Podcasts (i.e. Audio)
- Mini Educational Videos
- Interviews (Audio & Video)
- Polls
- User Forum where people can start their own topics (later Feature)
- User-defined RSS


Those are some of the Features I am working on now or hoping to do soon.

Does that help?


Debbie

teedoff
03-07-2012, 04:57 PM
lol it always amazes me when ppl come here asking for help, then argue and rebut the help they're getting...lol

Sorry non-substantitive comment, except for a little comic relief?? maybe..lol

mlseim
03-07-2012, 06:02 PM
I thought what I said in post #2 was an honest attempt to help,
but as you've seen, I missed the boat ... about features, not content.

She gave a list of current features and potential new features.
Obviously she has a good insight to features that can be put into a site.

My point was to focus on the content and demographics. Once a site is created,
it's very easy to have people test your features, critique the design, and offer
ideas and changes they would like to see. Features should come after content.

Unable to redeem myself, I surrendered.

teedoff
03-07-2012, 06:08 PM
I thought what I said in post #2 was an honest attempt to help,
but as you've seen, I missed the boat ... about features, not content.

She gave a list of current features and potential new features.
Obviously she has a good insight to features that can be put into a site.

My point was to focus on the content and demographics. Once a site is created,
it's very easy to have people test your features, critique the design, and offer
ideas and changes they would like to see. Features should come after content.

Unable to redeem myself, I surrendered.

lol Yes I saw your white flag.

Again, as you've stated Content is KING. Features are sometimes alot of fluff and wrapping.


try and build an online community which will motivate users to make friends and contribute.

Without relative, good engaging content, a pretty site will soon lose its appeal. I think thats what most everyone here is saying. But to add to this. If the OP wants "new" features, then I say add them all! lol If you're going to bank your site's successfulness on great features, then go all out and give users more than they can handle!.

doubledee
03-07-2012, 08:46 PM
lol it always amazes me when ppl come here asking for help, then argue and rebut the help they're getting...lol

Sorry non-substantitive comment, except for a little comic relief?? maybe..lol

It amazes me when I ask a question on plumbing and I get responses about wiring telling me that it is plumbing... ;)


Debbie

doubledee
03-07-2012, 09:05 PM
I thought what I said in post #2 was an honest attempt to help,

It was and I appreciate your attempt.



but as you've seen, I missed the boat ... about features, not content.

Somewhat.

You know... I am a Business Systems Analyst so I deal with this all day and have been doing it for ages. Your responses sound like how most Developers think! ;)

It is a given that CONTENT should be every website's first goal. I know that. And it is.

But I get a sense you're not understanding what a "Feature" is.

Like most Developers, you make it sound like a "Feature" is some physical thing on the website, as demonstrated here...


Create a whole bunch of animated .gif images


In Business Systems Analysis, "Features" are typically more abstract than animated GIF's and might include...


- Provide secure, encrypted connection during Checkout

- Deliver Content in a Platform-Neutral Format that can be viewed on Browsers and Mobile Devices

- Allow purchase of Parts and Whole-Good including non-UPS-able Items

- Comply with all HIPAA 2012 Standards

- Allow Users to read content via Web Articles, E-zines, and Downloadable PDFs

- Deliver Content in a Textual, as well as Multi-Media Format
(These are actual requirements taken from some of my former clients...)



Features are supposed to provide VALUE to the End-User... (Animated GIF's of Dancing Bears wouldn't classify!)



She gave a list of current features and potential new features.
Obviously she has a good insight to features that can be put into a site.

I know what I want. The purpose of this thread what to see how my ideas for Features align with what others might commonly look for or expect.



My point was to focus on the content and demographics. Once a site is created, it's very easy to have people test your features, critique the design, and offer ideas and changes they would like to see. Features should come after content.

But you are missing the point...

You define "Needs" and "Features" BEFORE you design the System!!

Would you go frame a building and then determine if it is suitable to live in?! (What if what was built was a steel shed?!)

Figure out WHAT you want, and then determine HOW to solve the original "Problems" and "Needs" by implementing the agreed upon "Features".



Unable to redeem myself, I surrendered.

It's not about "surrender", but focusing on the "Business Analysis" before worrying about development.


Debbie

doubledee
03-07-2012, 09:18 PM
lol Yes I saw your white flag.

Again, as you've stated Content is KING. Features are sometimes alot of fluff and wrapping.

But who is to say that CONTENT and FEATURES are not one in the same?!

Think more abstractly here... (You're thinking like Developers!) :p

One of my Features is...


Provide Content in both a Textual and Multi-Media Format


Is that not about Content????

Yes, it is about Content!!! (It is also a FEATURE - and thus a REQUIREMENT - that I want Great Content in more than one format so that when you are driving home, you can hear Debbie on your iPod. Imagine that?!) :D


Don't separate "Business Abstraction" and "Content" from Features because if you do then it means you don't understand gathering and abstracting Requirements and a Business and a System.

Yes, a Feature could read...

The System must support all versions of Internet Explorer
... but typically "Features" are at a higher and more abstract level and are not about the HOW (i.e. "Implementation") but instead about the WHAT.




Without relative, good engaging content, a pretty site will soon lose its appeal.

We all agree on that.



I think thats what most everyone here is saying.

But we all agree on that!



But to add to this. If the OP wants "new" features, then I say add them all! lol

Which ones? (That was the original question...)



If you're going to bank your site's successfulness on great features, then go all out and give users more than they can handle!.

That would be a poor approach.

To be successful, you provide the Features (including Content) that helps your End-Users solve their Problems...

People that just load up their systems with Features turn into Microsoft or DreamerWeaver... :rolleyes:


Debbie

doubledee
03-07-2012, 09:30 PM
Here is an example of a "Feature" that USAToday is using to boost their readership...

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/story/2012-03-07/apple-unveils-new-ipad/53400320/1


Notice all of the people who are involved with the CONTENT because there is a FEATURE to allow Readers to Comment On and Share the Content with others??

Personally, I think USAToday found a Feature that really provides value to their website. (Probably why I did the same thing on my website...)

Of course there are probably tons of other great Features out there. I wonder what (some of you think) they might be??

;)


Debbie

mlseim
03-07-2012, 10:32 PM
SB65 suggested a feature that he/she thought would be a good feature:


if there's a logon and I can use my existing profile, that's nice, I suppose.


Here was your response to that feature suggestion:


That is a FEATURE, but since I hate FaceBook, probably one I wouldn't support anytime soon!


How passive/aggressive is that answer?

... and the smiley face makes it even worse.

That's almost the ONLY (real feature, according to you) that someone submitted,
and you pretty much slammed the door on that suggestion. How do you expect
any constructive discussion when you're so rude and condescending? I hope you
don't treat your clients that way.

I have a full-time job not at all related to coding. I don't have time for this,
and I don't think anyone else does either. We take time out of our day to respond
and help when we can. Nobody deserves being treated like this, from the OP.

Moderator: Please delete this thread. This is awful, and I'm embarrassed by this discussion.


.

teedoff
03-08-2012, 01:39 AM
lol one more note.....since we're all "thinking like developers".

Who do you think writes code for all those features?? lol DEVELOPERS!

I for one was not suggesting that some features aren't nice, even very useful and sometimes almost neccessary, but as MS said, I think you were too general and when some valid suggestions were given you immediately dismissed them.

I go to a forum to get and give information to a related topic...such as this forum. If I were interested in small business information, then I would go to a site like you're suggesting, and if so inclined, and they offered a forum, then I may frequent that forum.

Facebook is such a popular vehicle today, that I suppose a user login to a forum or any other member type content in a site that utilizes a facebook login intregation would be a great feature.

Personally I hate the comments section of sites, as they seem to be a haven for rude, silly, sometimes vulgar unintelligent mongrels to vent their sad lives..lol but some ppl may like them, so that would be a good feature i suppose. Although with comment sections and forums, their arises the need of moderators to screen user content.

Whew, there... some suggestions off the top of my head. As MS said, I also have a full time job, but IN web development, and am here because I enjoy helping others and learning myself. Sometimes I have more free time here than other times. Anyway, take my suggestions as you will. If you dont like them, thats ok.

doubledee
03-08-2012, 04:06 AM
I go to a forum to get and give information to a related topic...such as this forum.

Personally I hate the comments section of sites, as they seem to be a haven for rude, silly, sometimes vulgar unintelligent mongrels to vent their sad lives..lol but some ppl may like them, so that would be a good feature i suppose.

So what makes a "Forum" okay in your mind but a "Comments Section" bad?

Aren't they basically the same thing?!


Debbie

kathy0000
03-08-2012, 04:08 AM
what do you mean?

teedoff
03-08-2012, 04:16 AM
So what makes a "Forum" okay in your mind but a "Comments Section" bad?

Aren't they basically the same thing?!


Debbie

lol I guess theoretically they're the same, but if you go to any "news" site and view the comments section, which I do almost daily, the majority of comments are neither substantitive or relative to what the article is about. I simply meant that either one you may utilize, you'd then need to moderate if it grew large enough so as to not have undesirable ppl and or comments plagueing your site. Not to mention the constant barrage of spammers you;d need to continually deal with.

With a forum, you may still have some of the same problems, but most forums are moderated more so than a news/comment type site. Plus, usually a forum deals with a particular topic, therefore the ones I enjoy, such as this one, I frequent for the content.

doubledee
03-08-2012, 04:28 AM
lol I guess theoretically they're the same, but if you go to any "news" site and view the comments section, which I do almost daily, the majority of comments are neither substantitive or relative to what the article is about.

Ah, but they attract you back every day too! :p



I simply meant that either one you may utilize, you'd then need to moderate if it grew large enough so as to not have undesirable ppl and or comments plagueing your site. Not to mention the constant barrage of spammers you;d need to continually deal with.

My website is coded so that...

1.) You have to Register - including Account Activation via E-mail - before you have posting rights, and

2.) I have to approve all Comments before they appear



With a forum, you may still have some of the same problems, but most forums are moderated more than a news/comment type site. Plus, usually a forum deals with a particular topic, therefore the ones I enjoy, such as this one, I frequent for the content.

Maybe, but if the website has Articles you are interested in, then there is a good chance you'd have Comments you would want to make about the Article and an interesting Conversation my start.

But I agree that one distinguishing benefit of Threads in a Forum is that they are about whatever the OP wants.

I am considering add Forums, but that is A LOT more work since I am doing all of this from scratch?!

Thanks,


Debbie

teedoff
03-08-2012, 04:46 AM
No the news sites I go to are only about the articles. The comments I hate and usually are what make me close that site out. The forum here draws me back because of the CONTENT and gernal theme/topic of this forum....COmputers. The site, visually is not very appealing, and about the only "feature" this site and most forums have that are useful are search forms. The login is neccessary for security and mailer lists purposes, but I've seen forums that allow "guests" with no login credentials post comments

doubledee
03-08-2012, 04:56 AM
The site, visually is not very appealing, and about the only "feature" this site and most forums have that are useful are search forms. The login is neccessary for security and mailer lists purposes, but I've seen forums that allow "guests" with no login credentials post comments

Really?

What about these Features...

- Create/Manage User Profile
- Add Friends
- Join Groups
- Send Private Messages
- Manage Preferences
- Manage Privacy Settings
- Manage Threads
- Event Reminders
- Ignore Users

and so on...


Debbie

SB65
03-08-2012, 11:22 AM
Goodness, this thread is antagonistic....we're all drawn to it like bees around a honeypot though.

Moving on from who's a developer and who's a business analyst, or not (I'm neither), actually, we're all website users.

My view on the question the OP is asking is

"What would make a website aimed at new small business starter-uppers appealing such that they would frequently use it"

Note I'm not going near the F-word as that'll bog down the conversation again. Users don't talk about Fs, they just use websites they like.

So, a potential answer to the question would then be:

'As the owner of a new small business, I would like to be able to read authoritative helpful information about everything/anything to do with setting up a business. It's the information I'm interested in and I personally don't care about watching videos or listening to podcasts - its more convenient to me to see it written. I quite often do my research in the evening when my family are watching TV in the room so text is easiest - videos don't work for me.

As the owner of a small business I would like to be able to ask questions, share experiences with others, and perhaps offer advice to others who are in the same situation as I was. I'd like to be able to search for information relevant to my particular problem/issue

'I might, possibly, be interested in meeting up with/corresponding with local people in the same space.

I might also want to keep using the website when my business is no longer a starter-upper because I don't yet know everything...

And that's it, really. If all that means I have to log in to something, fine - that's an enabler to let me do the things I want to do.

So in order to meet those things I think the most useful thing to me would be one of those discussion board things - you know - are they called chat boards or something - because only that would let me ask the questions I want. If I did use those, though, it'd be nice to know whether I can trust what a person's saying or not - how do I know that it's good advice?'

Oddly, this opinion has a basis in real life, since I'm also involved in a (non-IT) small business based in a nearby town, and I would like such a forum to ask a couple of real-life questions of other small businesses. If you're really interested, these relate to handling credit card payments in person, and courier costs for overseas parcels (please don't give me answers here on these....). I cannot get what I want from any website that I can find, nor comment on any articles, but a forum would no doubt get me some helpful answers.

...and I said I wouldn't give any further long replies.

approachnet
03-08-2012, 01:33 PM
No the news sites I go to are only about the articles. The comments I hate and usually are what make me close that site out. The forum here draws me back because of the CONTENT and gernal theme/topic of this forum....COmputers. The site, visually is not very appealing, and about the only "feature" this site and most forums have that are useful are search forms. The login is neccessary for security and mailer lists purposes, but I've seen forums that allow "guests" with no login credentials post comments

I agree about comments. I visit a lot of blogs and news sites, and don't even bother looking at comments 99% of the time anymore. Stopped allowing commenting on my company blog site due to too much spam.

teedoff
03-08-2012, 03:13 PM
Goodness, this thread is antagonistic....we're all drawn to it like bees around a honeypot though.

Moving on from who's a developer and who's a business analyst, or not (I'm neither), actually, we're all website users.

My view on the question the OP is asking is

"What would make a website aimed at new small business starter-uppers appealing such that they would frequently use it"

Note I'm not going near the F-word as that'll bog down the conversation again. Users don't talk about Fs, they just use websites they like.

So, a potential answer to the question would then be:

'As the owner of a new small business, I would like to be able to read authoritative helpful information about everything/anything to do with setting up a business. It's the information I'm interested in and I personally don't care about watching videos or listening to podcasts - its more convenient to me to see it written. I quite often do my research in the evening when my family are watching TV in the room so text is easiest - videos don't work for me.

As the owner of a small business I would like to be able to ask questions, share experiences with others, and perhaps offer advice to others who are in the same situation as I was. I'd like to be able to search for information relevant to my particular problem/issue

'I might, possibly, be interested in meeting up with/corresponding with local people in the same space.

I might also want to keep using the website when my business is no longer a starter-upper because I don't yet know everything...

And that's it, really. If all that means I have to log in to something, fine - that's an enabler to let me do the things I want to do.

So in order to meet those things I think the most useful thing to me would be one of those discussion board things - you know - are they called chat boards or something - because only that would let me ask the questions I want. If I did use those, though, it'd be nice to know whether I can trust what a person's saying or not - how do I know that it's good advice?'

Oddly, this opinion has a basis in real life, since I'm also involved in a (non-IT) small business based in a nearby town, and I would like such a forum to ask a couple of real-life questions of other small businesses. If you're really interested, these relate to handling credit card payments in person, and courier costs for overseas parcels (please don't give me answers here on these....). I cannot get what I want from any website that I can find, nor comment on any articles, but a forum would no doubt get me some helpful answers.

...and I said I wouldn't give any further long replies.

I think, in one form or another, this same idea/thought has been repeated a couple of times in this thread, which is why I'm exhausted answering it. lol

Now, and I'm not answering your issues SB...lol but you need to talk to my employer...lol He owns a small business and I'd say half of our online sales are to overseas clients. Of course we're in the US, but overseas shipping is a big deal for us.

Anyway, again I'm not sure how much more this thread can be answered. Suggestions have been made, very good ones mind you. Now I think the OP should stop dragging it out and go ahead and start implementing some of them. Really its usually all trial and error anyway. Some things might work out well, some things users will hate and therefore they will die out.

alhera
03-08-2012, 06:53 PM
You can develop dynamic website by using php, mysql and others. So you need to implement this properly.

doubledee
03-08-2012, 07:18 PM
...and I said I wouldn't give any further long replies.

Glad you're consistent!

So your response gave me insight into things that would provide value to you beyond good content.

Anyone else have ideas?!

Thanks,


Debbie

seema12
03-09-2012, 08:21 AM
great post..i think this is great idea to make your web site more interesting.Because building a website that attracts and retains users can be a difficult task. Factors such as frequency of updates and fun are key in enticing visitors to return. The addition of content that a user will consider fun depends on the type of website. Google Gadgets provides many different programs to include in your website. These are small, self contained programs that provide different functionality like simple games to count down timers.

c1lonewolf
03-09-2012, 05:18 PM
It amazes me when I ask a question on plumbing and I get responses about wiring telling me that it is plumbing... ;)


How did you know the difference? Everyone is telling you the same thing over and over and you're stuck on the word "Features". Personally you're over thinking things, I do that alot! As someone here told me once it's all in the context!

The original "features" you posted are nothing more than options needed to maintain a specific set of datatable entries...
Account/Login Maintainence:
- Activate an Account (script activated)

- Create an Account
- Log In
- Log Out
- Change Password
- Reset Password

all part of account/database management ops:
* Create a Profile/Account (Similar to an Account, but with more details, photos, etc.) is the same just adds more detail!
- Change User Details (e.g. E-mail, Username, Name, Location, etc.)
- View My Posts
* Send/Receive Private Messages (PM's)
- Create/Manage User Preferences (e.g. Interested in Tax and Legal Articles)



Visitor Content Features - Articles(submission/editing by account holder above):
- Browse Articles
- Add Comments to Articles
- Add WYSIWYG Editor for adding Comments (simple blog style form input will work with backend to accept or deny posted comments)



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