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SOLICITING FEEDBACK : NEW MEMBER EXPERIENCE

post #1 of 341
Thread Starter 

We have been doing a lot of thinking lately about how to improve the new member experience and would love to get some community feedback on our initial thoughts.

 

We have been hearing a lot lately that the community is starting to run low on patience for repeated questions from new users, things that have been asked a million times before and they didn't search before asking.  This has resulted in a lot of new members feeling unwelcome after their first interactions on the forums.

 

To address this we were considering creating a new section on the forums for new members to introduce themselves, ask questions without worry of being attacked for not searching first, and generally get a positive first interaction with the CC community.

 

By creating a specific section for this, hopefully the members who do not want to deal with these kinds of questions can just not participate in this section of the forums, and those members who enjoy welcoming new members and helping them get started perhaps we could start an official Welcome Committee or something like that.

 

WOULD LOVE FEEDBACK ON THIS IDEA.

 

Would it be effective in addressing the needs of both the new members and the existing members?  Is this the right way to do it?  Other ideas?

 

post #2 of 341

This a variation on your idea, but I wonder if you could create a "baby pool" of sorts, a forum where new members can post basic questions and meet other members.  When their post count is high enough (at whatever number you select) they earn the ability to post in all the regular forums.  Maybe this would get them acclimated and familiar enough to see those questions that get asked over and over, and eliminate some of the repetition.

 

And a welcome committee would be a lovely idea. :)

 

Liz

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post #3 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by liz at sugar View Post
 

This a variation on your idea, but I wonder if you could create a "baby pool" of sorts, a forum where new members can post basic questions and meet other members.  When their post count is high enough (at whatever number you select) they earn the ability to post in all the regular forums.  Maybe this would get them acclimated and familiar enough to see those questions that get asked over and over, and eliminate some of the repetition.

 

And a welcome committee would be a lovely idea. :)

 

Liz

 

interesting variation .. thanks for sharing your idea. ;-D

post #4 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by liz at sugar View Post

This a variation on your idea, but I wonder if you could create a "baby pool" of sorts, a forum where new members can post basic questions and meet other members.  When their post count is high enough (at whatever number you select) they earn the ability to post in all the regular forums.  Maybe this would get them acclimated and familiar enough to see those questions that get asked over and over, and eliminate some of the repetition.

And a welcome committee would be a lovely idea. icon_smile.gif

Liz

That's actually a really great idea
post #5 of 341
What will happen to members who have been here for years, but just not very talkative ...and their posts count is not very high?!?
post #6 of 341

I think it's a great idea Heath.

When I first visited cake central for advice I already had 14 years of decorating experience and had a question about something a bit more advanced . I did need advice from more experienced designers.

An inexperienced designer would not have been able to help me had they been the only ones to view my question.

Fortunately I received a wonderful response from members and it was a great experience.

I do see a lot of questions that newbies ask, repeatedly, that do become quite annoying. 

I think having a special place for those questions to be asked and answered by designers who don't mind helping with the routine questions would be great.

post #7 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by liz at sugar View Post

 

".......And a welcome committee would be a lovely idea......)

That is a lovely idea.  Perhaps with some simple directions on using the Search function.:)

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~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman  
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post #8 of 341

How about a "permanent sticky" that pops up when they log in for say, the first ten times they post? Like a pop up that can't be ignored, but will eventually disappear after they've posted a few times. It could have links to the most common questions, or a short description about where to look for answers for the most common questions. And they would see it over and over and over for a little while at least, and have to look at it

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post #9 of 341

Thank for so much for  all your hard work on making Cake Central a good experience for all.  I think a new section would be great and worth a try with a welcome committee able to respond timely.    

I know one of the most common questions seen over and over is about pricing and number of servings.  I wonder if a optional drop down form could be made available when posting cake pictures that would include more information if the bakers choose to complete it. The drop down menu could include such things as suggested selling price,number of servings, size of cake, fondant/ buttercream, etc. Cake Central members have diverse backgrounds and experience and the information would be the view of the baker but it could be a starting point for the new bakers to compare information.  The drop down menu should be optional thus avoiding increasing posts regarding how to complete the menu.    

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I ask God for all things that I might enjoy life,
He gave me life that I might enjoy all things....

 

dreambakers.net  Come check out our custom made cake Plateau

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post #10 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZCouture View Post
 

How about a "permanent sticky" that pops up when they log in for say, the first ten times they post? Like a pop up that can't be ignored, but will eventually disappear after they've posted a few times. It could have links to the most common questions, or a short description about where to look for answers for the most common questions. And they would see it over and over and over for a little while at least, and have to look at it

 

not sure we could do that with the technology we are using, however we could create a welcome PM that includes links to important posts to read to get started.  It would not be as "in your face" but it would at least be something more than we do now to get them started off right.

post #11 of 341
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZCouture View Post
 

How about a "permanent sticky" that pops up when they log in for say, the first ten times they post? Like a pop up that can't be ignored, but will eventually disappear after they've posted a few times. It could have links to the most common questions, or a short description about where to look for answers for the most common questions. And they would see it over and over and over for a little while at least, and have to look at it

 

And I know that can be done, because the local newspaper here has an online edition, and it counts down how many free articles you've read before you have to register and pay. So everytime I visit the page, there's a box that floats above what Im reading that shows how many free "reads" I have.

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post #12 of 341

We must have been typing at the same time. I just think the repetitive "in your face" information at least for the first few times would be helpful, rather than something that most people quickly click on just to go do whatever they were going to anyways....know what I mean? 

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post #13 of 341

I just know that when I join a site, or anything like that, honestly...I click thru whatever I'm supposed to read and go about my merry way. I think most people do that, really. If it can't be ignored, the information may stick a little better. I don't think it would turn anyone away either. Ok, thanks for reading my suggestion, I appreciate it. I'll let others chime in now. Done, I swear! :D

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post #14 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dreamacres View Post
 

Thank for so much for  all your hard work on making Cake Central a good experience for all.  I think a new section would be great and worth a try with a welcome committee able to respond timely.    

I know one of the most common questions seen over and over is about pricing and number of servings.  I wonder if a optional drop down form could be made available when posting cake pictures that would include more information if the bakers choose to complete it. The drop down menu could include such things as suggested selling price,number of servings, size of cake, fondant/ buttercream, etc. Cake Central members have diverse backgrounds and experience and the information would be the view of the baker but it could be a starting point for the new bakers to compare information.  The drop down menu should be optional thus avoiding increasing posts regarding how to complete the menu.    

something we could look at for the future, but this is a coding item, so not something we can do in the short term.  This thread is really about improving the use of the forum part of the site because we can quickly make changes to the forum flow without coding.

post #15 of 341
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AZCouture View Post
 

I just know that when I join a site, or anything like that, honestly...I click thru whatever I'm supposed to read and go about my merry way. I think most people do that, really. If it can't be ignored, the information may stick a little better. I don't think it would turn anyone away either. Ok, thanks for reading my suggestion, I appreciate it. I'll let others chime in now. Done, I swear! :D

I totally understand about the stickiness idea, its just not something I think our forum software has built in, so it might not be something we could do in the near term.  I know other sites have that, but they are using different software which has different feature sets and for different reasons.

 

But still an interesting idea to keep in the the hopper.

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