Please don't take this the wrong way but...

Discussion in 'Forum Support & Feedback' started by 0754ben84, Apr 6, 2016.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    ...isn't the forum a little quiet?

    I mean, back in the day it was really quite and active place and although I have come back and there are a few members that have stuck around, the forum seems really quiet compared to how it used to be.

    You boast of having over 100,000 members but very few people actually seem to post and join in the conversations, which makes it hard to stick around because nothing's happening,

    I've been dropping by once/twice a day to check out my alerts and see the new posts but there's just not very much activity.

    And @Anthony, is he even part of the forum any more?

    Please don't take this as a big criticism, that's not what I'm trying to do. I suppose I'm asking is there nothing you/we could do to actually increase the amount of activity that goes on around here? UK business forums are an active place so we know forums like this can work.

    Anyway, just my thoughts.

    Ben
    si4560 likes this.
  2. beacon hill

    beacon hill

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Messages:
    1,859
    You are right, and we are certainly not taking it the wrong way.
    This has been discussed here a few times of late

    Various reasons I guess, including the fall out from the SS effect and most recently
    a load of generic "Hi I,m new" question / answer posts from the same user(s) having their own
    little private conversations
  3. Dean

    Dean

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    9,441
    Some people get what they want/need out of places like this and then move on. Others stick around and put back in what they once got out. Sadly the latter seems to be the minority.

    I also think there was a particular surge of people looking to start their own businesses around the time of the global recession and I think that has waned somewhat in the past few years.
  4. Gary

    Gary

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2009
    Messages:
    16,366
    I get exactly what you mean, though they have recently hired @Cody in February, and @Huda who only started on Monday to try to build it up a bit.

    And no, Anthony hasn't even logged in for over a year, @Helen is the owner now.
    Huda likes this.
  5. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    liamhawes likes this.
  6. liamhawes

    liamhawes

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Messages:
    2,104
    There was a stock shifters merger attempt or something then I don't think a lot of people liked. Think Helen has been in charge for a while now if I remember.

    I've noticed Erik and Cody posting some topical posts that people have different views on, these are pretty good at getting engagement from the community.

    I would think we almost need like a regular blog type feel to it, knowing every couple of days there would be a new subject to read, learn from and then comment on. (I appreciate there is a blog section but it doesn't work in the same way tbh)

    With the best will in the world we don't really get much out of our time writing an essay style post on a subject. I enjoy doing it to help out the community every now and then, don't get me wrong. It's just from a time management prospective most of us just don't have that free time.

    @0754ben84 like you wrote a good post the other day on optimization. It would be good if the site has these style of helpful posts regular from the staff etc if it was possible, as I feel these add value to the site and increase engagement.

    My thoughts on this anyway, what do you lot think?
    Huda and 0754ben84 like this.
  7. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    I've written 2 post now that I feel if someone was to take the time to read them and put them into action, they would make a difference to their businesses and ultimately, their lives.

    And like you say @liamhawes, these take time to write. I don't mind writing these posts as I'd like to give back a bit but if no one sees them or gets involved I might as well keep them for my own site and use them for SEO.

    I don't know, maybe the admin should look at other forums and find out how they operate and maybe try model their success?

    Surely it's in the website owners best interest as the site makes money from advertising, the more members, traffic and engagement community has, the more money the site will make.
  8. Erik

    Erik

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2012
    Messages:
    2,707
    I don't think there's any criticism in your question, Ben. The points mentioned by everyone above are all right in fact. Been discussed over a few times already, so just to put it shortly, there was a big downfall that happened (what they call the SS effect), and thus many got affected by it. It's long been forgotten now and everything with that were fixed, however, the toll it took was too much, so now we have been trying to pick up everything again.

    Dean's point is right. While we still do gain new members on a daily basis, most come in as a one off. Ask something then when answered, will no longer log in, some just want to check stocks sold, or some just want to read. This goes with advertisers nowadays who just prefer to post in the marketplace rather than interact, but we cannot blame them as most suppliers' goal is to sell. Other new ones, like beacon hill said, just post one liners that are at times even, not related to the discussion, only later on that we figure out as a new method that spammers use.

    But that does not mean to say that everything's quiet. Trust us, if we staff all lost hope already the developments should no longer continue, and we got Cody and Huda now to further increase our reach. We've been working on pulling in more and more people (partners, advertisers, and even big buyers) to our platform, but definitely, we need discussions. As a matter of fact, this thread alone helps, this thread will definitely drive in more views and possibly replies, which will hopefully encourage new registrants to interact.

    I think another thing is that we already have archives and archives of information, all possible answers to questions are already within our forums. So much so that new ones may not actually need to post their own questions as likely it has been answered somewhere in the forums. What I think we need to do is adapt and try to keep up with the pace of the evolution of business. We staff could pick up some of the news going around to have a discussion on, but we can't focus the whole day focusing on getting content alone (Cody for example still has to communicate and network, Huda is just starting, me, I still have to work on development projects, and Jenilee, she still has loads of tickets and inquiries daily). We could contribute, we could at times open new discussion possibilities, but not often as we have other things needed to be done regularly. We sure do hope that everybody knows that. If we did miss something of a big news, then share it, we'll read it anyway and give our 2 pence about it.

    Finally, to answer Ben's question: There is no such thing as "we can do nothing about it". There is always something we can do. We've been trying to rebuild, and everyone from the staff team knows it will take time (we feel like we are re-building TWF from scratch), but eventually we'll get there. But as with like any other new community, we need more interaction. As we rebuild the forums, we can help, but we're not entirely experts in business, we can open discussions at times and share our thoughts in some, but our knowledge is limited, so each member who shares his thoughts add up to the total knowledge. I believe you know the answer to what should come next right?

    Or, actually I miss the lounge discussions (I've been always reading in that section). That section is the light-hearted part of the community. More on that will probably get more on the other sections, right?

    Sorry for the long post. Here's a businessman potato for you:
    [​IMG]
    0754ben84 and Huda like this.
  9. Dean

    Dean

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    9,441
    I've read them and think they are excellent posts. Some points from them have been added to our to do list.

    There are some other similar forums out there but I'm not sure they that much busier than here. Another one of the bigger ones I occasionally find some useful advice on doesn't appear any busier comparing the number of posts made yesterday.
  10. Huda

    Huda

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Messages:
    23
    On this note! Something @Cody and I have just been working on is our Instagram page. @shaununo FYI we have already mentioned you on there!

    Please all follow our Instagram with the username: thewholesaleforums

    Instagram has really taken off so this would be a great way to keep in touch with our users and spread the word!

    Thanks guys :)
    Erik likes this.
  11. Huda

    Huda

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Messages:
    23
  12. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    Haha! :D

    Ahh right, I genuinely really like being part of the group so I'm happy the issues are being looked. Looks like there has been a ton of politics while I've been away that I wasn't aware of.
    Huda likes this.
  13. uhafmail

    uhafmail

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Messages:
    6,469
    The SS merger destroyed the forum, plain and simple and although Eric says it has long been forgotten, it hasn't by the members that have left. TWF basically stuck two fingers up at the people who made the forum what it was by merging with SS.

    The original TWF platform encouraged sellers to build relationships with forum members/buyers to build up trust. Advertisers weren't just posting helpful information, interacting with other members out of the goodness of their heart but because by doing so their name would be seen being helpful, and if that member later saw an item hey were interested in and it was by an advertiser that was familiar for being helpful it helped getting the sale. It is no coincidence that the month i won MOTM way back in October 2008 i had racked up over 800 posts in that one month alone (i was also selling on the forum at the time).

    It was no coincidence that the more successful forum advertisers were also prolific forum posters - Pete, HWH, etc.

    Then SS came a long and made all that redundant. Why post on a forum when any post/thread was hidden under pages and pages of SS selling threads that were of little interest to 99% of people? Why build up a relationship with forum members when it made no difference to my ability to sell on a faceless selling platform on SS?

    It is all well and good that it has now reverted back but TWF lost a lot of valuable members back then that will probably never return and those that do will never post as much as before without some real incentive which i can't see at the moment. You lost the advertisers so you lost the buyers as well. Now you are in the situation of pretty much starting from scratch because without one you wont get the other and without both you wont have a worthwhile forum or at least not in the same dynamic as it used to be.
    Dave likes this.
  14. Ross

    Ross

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2010
    Messages:
    1,243
    I guess you missed the death of Pete @0754ben84 . The forum was always much more active when he was around.
  15. Dean

    Dean

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    9,441
    Doesn't do any good dwelling on it though @uhafmail especially after this long. Mistakes were made, lessons were learned, it's done and dusted and time to move on. Fresh start, new beginnings and all that.
  16. uhafmail

    uhafmail

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Messages:
    6,469
    I definitely agree with this but what i am getting at is the SS mess in my opinion will not be forgotten about by the majority of members who left as a direct or indirect result of it. It is almost a new forum.

    How many new members in the last 12 months are "regulars"? Before SS, TWF would lose regular members almost on a monthly basis but it was never a problem because they replaced by new enthusiastic members. The problem is nearly all of the regulars here (and there really isn't that many these days) have been here years and i would hazard that most of these are only here because of the nostalgia and few familiar faces left. Would you stay here if you just stumbled across the forum today Dean?

    If staff want to talk directly with me about a few ideas of getting TWF back to the glory days then feel free to PM me, i offered some advice to Anthony a few years ago but i think he really wanted the SS merger to work - on the face of it, it could have been a really good move, it just didn't work out!
  17. Dean

    Dean

    Joined:
    May 22, 2008
    Messages:
    9,441
    I'd like to think I would but being hypothetical I really don't know for sure. When I first came here I was looking for advice, not a social club. The forum is still a huge archive for useful info and current members are always happy to answer questions from new members and old.

    There were a few of the old crowd that were not positive for the forum (none of the ones you mentioned I hasten to add). There used to be a certain pack of wolves that liked nothing more than ganging up on people who said something they didn't like. I was on the receiving end once. I'm glad they're gone and the forum no longer has a level of hostility it once had.

    Many of the old regulars have moved on for lots of reasons, whether it be the SS issue, lack of time, no longer in business and many more. That's entirely their prerogative. They probably won't be back and that's ok.

    I do actually think that the majority of those affected by SS never actually contributed to the forum anyway. I've said it many times before that Pete always did well as an advertiser because he put so much time in to the forums. So many advertisers just advertise here without contributing anything else. Many don't even respond to their own threads. Pete had it spot on.

    Those old regulars that were affected by SS have made their decision and moved on - that's cool, no hard feelings. Onwards and upwards for everyone.
    uhafmail likes this.
  18. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    I did catch it. I'm sure I saw the announcement on Facebook and I did log in to post my comments on that thread - it was very sad news.
  19. 0754ben84

    0754ben84

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,727
    @uhafmail - I be really keen to hear how you think the forum could be improved. Just as an education as much as anything else.
  20. psxgamer

    psxgamer

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2009
    Messages:
    3,467
    I consider myself one of the old regulars, I still visit TWF on a regular basis :)

    Personally I think the biggest problem is the old regulars ended up on TWF at the very beginning of their business. We found a wealth of information that helped growing our business. In the meantime we're a few years later. I no longer need to look for the information 'cause I know what I need to know.

    No longer the time to spend lots of time on TWF.

    As a thanks to TWF I've some educational posts in the past. At that time just minutes after posting people thanking, asking questions. It was really satisfactory. Last time I wrote a post like that it was dead in the water so I'm a lot less tempted to write other ones. Will write a new one though (been teaching for 10 years, and the teacher in me has an urge to come out).
    Helen and ladyvgw like this.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Back to top

Share This Page