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-   -   What Can Be Done To Bring Traffic Back To The Site? (https://www.loveshack.org/forums/general/loveshack-org-questions-comments/657931-what-can-done-bring-traffic-back-site)

Mr. Lucky 8th June 2018 1:05 AM

What Can Be Done To Bring Traffic Back To The Site?
 
Happy to see LS back and I continue to enjoy posting. Most members are thoughtful and kind, not always my experience at other sites.

But Loveshack's reemergence seems to be a pretty well-kept secret and, at times, it feels as though there are only a few dozen active posters. Since the outage was caused in part by financial issues, doubt there's much budget for outreach.

Any folks with tech backgrounds have "guerilla marketing" ideas as to how the word could be spread? Maybe we each just need to tell 10 people...who tell 10 people...who tell...

Mr. Lucky

William 8th June 2018 7:54 AM

Perhaps Paul knows something we don't because that topic has been conspicuously missing from any of his communications. He's shared no strategies to re-grow and further grow the site, no concrete adjustments to policy or guidelines, nothing.

However, he did share some graphs regarding other aspects of the site which indicate he is savvy about metrics and how to put them together and analyze them.

If he is serious about the beta forum he's working on replacing what we currently have, perhaps he's waiting to get that installed first, then push new/different strategies to increase exposure and membership.

For example, I noticed just under 1000 new members have joined since the outage, a bit over three weeks ago, but easily half, probably more, have been spammers we've banned. New forum software with stronger anti-spam measures will provide a cleaner environment and also more accurate stats on how we're doing regarding growing membership.

Since Paul has access to the server logs, he knows how things are going; I'm waiting for the May stats from similarweb to see if the 1000 point ranking loss from the site outage has recovered any. Remarkably, the site was still getting a lot of pings during the outage, an echo of its popularity prior. However, the internet moves at warp speed and once something disappears, most people move on to the next thing. Exposure is fleeting and attention span brief. Harsh reality.

If members have ideas about getting the message out and creating more exposure, feel free to suggest stuff and we'll pass it on to Paul. Historically we haven't received much feedback from such suggestions but no harm in trying.

CautiouslyOptimistic 8th June 2018 8:43 AM

If users have time and are interested in getting new members to join us, start commenting on articles about relationship issues on news websites, blogs, and Facebook posts. Include a plug for Loveshack in your comment.

William 8th June 2018 9:21 AM

Noting a comment from one member in the Water Cooler forum that they were glad the forum was back and they added a negative comment about enotalone, which I presume they participated in while LoveShack was down, I can add that two top historical referrers prior to the outage were ENA and TAM (talkaboutmarriage). In other words, where site visits were tracked, users clicked from those sites to LoveShack. Prior, both were lower ranked than LoveShack. That isn't the case now, at least short-term. Going dark was brutal.

Since it appears many LoveShack members are on social media like Facebook and Twitter, mentioning the site on those platforms could likely be helpful.

What I've noticed in real life is people in my social circle have their narrow and focused internet interest and presence and beyond that the wider internet doesn't exist. Concurrently, none would be caught dead discussing their marriages on a web forum like LoveShack. I've suggested LoveShack to a few who've used me as a marital sounding board and they looked at me like I was an alien. I guess I need a better pitch.

Mrin 8th June 2018 9:45 AM

Suggestion - what about sending an email to previously active users letting them know that the site is back. Are you able to easily access people's email addresses that they used when they registered?

William 8th June 2018 10:29 AM

That was suggested elsewhere and I looked into it. The main negative was server resources and bandwidth. Paul is running really lean right now and has throttled the back-end in favor of the user experience publicly. We saw some tweaking going on early in the site recovery when he was adjusting the processors to speed up rendering and public searches at the expense of some of the work we do in the background.

A mass e-mail to over a half-million addresses would be a huge hit on the background and likely hit the public forum and also would cost a bunch of money, something in short supply right now. Paul could take some time and create a user group of members active in xxx time and among the usergroup 'established members' to narrow that e-mail list. Question is, does he want to mess with that with this forum software or wait and do it with the beta he's working on? I don't know. He hasn't shared much with us. We do pass on suggestions when in contact. Thanks for the suggestion!

alphamale 8th June 2018 11:03 AM

Well....we had a good run.

JuneL 8th June 2018 11:12 AM

Do users get email notifications for private messages? I havenít logged into the email account I used for LS for a long time (and have forgotten my password).

Quote:

Originally Posted by William (Post 7577363)
That was suggested elsewhere and I looked into it. The main negative was server resources and bandwidth. Paul is running really lean right now and has throttled the back-end in favor of the user experience publicly. We saw some tweaking going on early in the site recovery when he was adjusting the processors to speed up rendering and public searches at the expense of some of the work we do in the background.

A mass e-mail to over a half-million addresses would be a huge hit on the background and likely hit the public forum and also would cost a bunch of money, something in short supply right now. Paul could take some time and create a user group of members active in xxx time and among the usergroup 'established members' to narrow that e-mail list. Question is, does he want to mess with that with this forum software or wait and do it with the beta he's working on? I don't know. He hasn't shared much with us. We do pass on suggestions when in contact. Thanks for the suggestion!


William 8th June 2018 11:42 AM

Our experience has been that PM's from moderators and administrators generate an e-mail notification. Member to member varies depending on preferences and, of course, the member monitoring the registration e-mail account.

Members also have the option to change their e-mail in their profile if they choose.

Since Paul assigned separate moderator accounts we experimented with this, changing the @LoveShack.org generic account for specific real world accounts and the changes worked fine.

However, I know no way of generating mass PM's in an automated sense. I guess someone could write a script to collate the member roster and paste it with the appropriate separators into a PM message, presuming the address field doesn't have a character limit. The most I've ever done is four or five members at a time.

While all are not posting, yet, I have seen a substantial number of what we might term 'regulars' returning to view or log in, so they're out there. Perhaps more will return to posting in time. I'll keep suggesting to Paul to post something publicly. I think that'll help.

DrReplyInRhymes 8th June 2018 2:47 PM

I've run a vbulletin board before.

My opinions:

Without the owner of the website onboard to make changes to both vbulletin and the website itself, I don't see how you can without actively running around and marketing the forum.

There are a lot of things you can to do update the website as well as increase user interaction in order to keep them here longer / returning. You can see the average time people spend here is 5 minutes each. This is quote good, as the average attention span for a human is 7 seconds. 'So, how do we keep them here longer?' should be the question!

The psychology behind online games is very much the same. Get them hooked onto your game so they keep wanting more. It's actually quite fascinating.

I've tried to contact the owner of this website a few times, along with the owner of the domain loveshack.org because I was interested in bringing it back when I noticed it was down. I could easily turn this into a project that would pay for itself at least in order to keep it up.

While I would love to have more features added, including premium features that would actually be desirable to generate additional income from the traffic, I think a complete revamp of the website is needed. If not, I'll probably try to do it myself someday as a hobby project.

Idea: Integrate paypal donation button in posts. Make likes seen by everyone again. I've always was interested in having those who provide consistent valuable advice rewarded, so I had always thought some type of "donation" can be given. It can be monetary, loveshack-currency similar to reddit gold, or "points" that you can redeem for more features. Spend a few dollars and put facebook ads up to drive traffic. Hire someone from fiverr.com to make some great ads and really drive home the idea of getting advice for relationship problems and other intrapersonal communication problems and make it visible that with due time and qualifying individuals, they could become a paid advice giver!

As far as I know, the longer this website remains unchanged, the farther it will fall into the depths of forgottenness or outdatedness. Keep up with technology and the ideas that are making other startups explode and assimilate them into this website in order to grow traffic organically.

Once you gain enough traffic, you can then make some pocket change by affiliate marketing with other relationship/intrapersonal communication websites. They link you, you link them. Google's algorithm will pick up on your back links and keep you at the top of the search engine when looking for relationship advice. ****, you could even run a few adword campaigns to drive traffic to the website with any leftover profits as a reinvestment to the website if it shows promising results. According to Alexa (which now doesn't display the amount of traffic without an "advanced plan", sheesh), this website actually had quite a bit of decent traffic before but was completely underutilized in terms of capitalizing on the traffic.

William 8th June 2018 3:01 PM

Without going into any details, I'm sure a strong offer for the web site domain would be considered.

The move to Google Cloud Services from Softlayer during the outage is reflective of the current climate in the owner's personal life. I wouldn't expect marked investment in the near term, though suggestions for no-cost improvements hopefully will be considered.

I was just doing some research in the moderation areas and came across a discussion between Robert and myself about Tony being missing and not hearing from Paul in awhile. That was in 2014. Pretty much it's been a zero since then. We've (moderation) been on our own.

Paul says there is no way to integrate a payment/support system into this iteration of vBulletin running on Google cloud services. I'm not privy to the back end so can't really dispute that. I was thinking Google wallet or something like that, since the site is on Google's servers now. Perhaps there's no way to do that. In any event, ostensibly even though finances were the reason for the shutdown and change, he's not actively seeking member support on this software iteration, and in fact disabled the subscription system. Hopefully the new software he's discussing will incorporate the changes to bring traffic back and make the site profitable again.

DrReplyInRhymes 8th June 2018 3:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by William (Post 7577507)
Without going into any details, I'm sure a strong offer for the web site domain would be considered.

The move to Google Cloud Services from Softlayer during the outage is reflective of the current climate in the owner's personal life. I wouldn't expect marked investment in the near term, though suggestions for no-cost improvements hopefully will be considered.

I was just doing some research in the moderation areas and came across a discussion between Robert and myself about Tony being missing and not hearing from Paul in awhile. That was in 2014. Pretty much it's been a zero since then. We've (moderation) been on our own.

Paul says there is no way to integrate a payment/support system into this iteration of vBulletin running on Google cloud services. I'm not privy to the back end so can't really dispute that. I was thinking Google wallet or something like that, since the site is on Google's servers now. Perhaps there's no way to do that. In any event, ostensibly even though finances were the reason for the shutdown and change, he's not actively seeking member support on this software iteration, and in fact disabled the subscription system. Hopefully the new software he's discussing will incorporate the changes to bring traffic back and make the site profitable again.

I was wondering why the /whois info was different than I remembered when I tried to email the address listed.....

As for integrating a payment system, there absolutely is a way! Adding paypal donation buttons to posting templates in the admin section via code would be a way that has found success in other forums.

I'm just throwing out ideas for ya.

William 8th June 2018 3:27 PM

I get what you're saying but Paul is saying it's not possible and he was the one who programmed the site to accept Paypal for subscriptions over a decade ago. I used it as a new member without issue. I can't imagine him making it up, to the point of removing the subscription system entirely (note what happens when you click on the subscribe button now). He either believes he's right or he purposely doesn't want member donations and isn't being truthful about that. I don't know which it is. We've already, and for a long time since the subscription system has been broken for a long time, made similar suggestions. At some point, accepting reality is the healthiest path.

ETA, here's a discussion, linked to start at the point the latest iteration of problems began about a year ago:

https://www.loveshack.org/forums/gen...ms#post7341623

They had occurred periodically in the past but Paul fixed them when advised. The latest iteration never was repaired.

Robert 8th June 2018 4:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DrReplyInRhymes (Post 7577500)
I've tried to contact the owner of this website a few times, along with the owner of the domain loveshack.org because I was interested in bringing it back when I noticed it was down. I could easily turn this into a project that would pay for itself at least in order to keep it up.

I have heard this before and I think people don't realize the resources and money it takes to run a forum that can serve up 6 million posts to thousands of users, the CPU power and bandwidth can cost over 1k per month or it used to..
I think people think a forum like this isn't very costly but the reality is it can cost 10's of thousands of dollars per year and advertising only pays a tiny portion of that so the labor of love aspect comes into play..

Loveshack has been around longer than some of it's posters are old and hopefully Paul will continue his labor of love project for us all.

alphamale 8th June 2018 4:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Robert (Post 7577537)
I think people think a forum like this isn't very costly but the reality is it can cost 10's of thousands of dollars per year and advertising only pays a tiny portion of that so the labor of love aspect comes into play...

I've been trying to make a donation for years but I can't because the site's donation functionality is broken. And I know of other posters who were trying to do the same.


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