When reviewing our website with a critical eye it’s important to know who we are hearing from and that their voices represent targeted, yet diverse and willing members. Active participation is a crucial factor. The feedback needs to come from people that have used the site! The Scavenger Hunt was an effort to gather active Member participation and yet it has been not as successful as the web team had hoped. Most of the feedback we currently get has been hearsay and from the same few voices.
Despite the explosion of social media in the last five years, the 1% rule first identified by research in the early 1990’s (website research) still holds true:
- 1% of people create content
- 9% edit or modify that content, and
- 90% view the content without contributing (called lurkers)
New research has demonstrated that Community-based Websites tend to buck this trend:
- 64% of community members contributed new content every month, and
- 7% lurk (read content but do not contribute)
Smaller communities fare better (under 500), volume of new community activities for members to engage in is better, and shared demographics (commonality helps). Portland EWGA has all those attributes :a large Chapter but a small community, multiple events opportunities, and a shared demographics of working women golfers.
Key Measuring Methods
It is important to go beyond page views and clicks to review and focus on content that creates engagement.
- At what rate are unique visitors (not just the same people) active in not only viewing but rating, downloading, and adding to site content?
- Blogs, discussion boards, libraries, and Member Created groups (eGroups) give us the ability to for our members to contribute to site content.
Engagement opportunities can measure the contribution of member conversations and not just count passive observers.
For analysis we need to have Chapter members knowledgeable about logging in and familiarity with the structure of the site. Members also need to log in at least once a week. Key engagement measurement are:
- Facilitation Level: How many facilitators are building engagement opportunities
- Participation: Percentage of members who are participating during a one week period
- Contributions: Number of contributions made by each member participating during that week
- Lurker rate: The percentage of members who login, but just observe versus participate
We do not need more buttons on the Home Page to make one-click user functions. We do need quick links and 'link smithing' to let users know where the click will take them. Please refer to the blog on link writing for the web.
- Most Members will learn the site if the interest is there.
- We need to continue to create facilitator-initiated activities that encourage contributions and reduce lurkers.
Most of our users want to find out about events, register for events, or download library files. We have initiated a few Member Created Groups for Match Play, Scavenger Hunt and The Reserve League. We will gain valuable information from these Member Created groups and will report back to you, our members.
The Scavenger Hunt (just finished) required members to go around the site and combined with our Quick Start User guide gave members enough direction and experience to complete the Game. They are also very qualified to now complete the Web Survey. I will use the Scavenger Hunt eGroup to request surveys from these 14 'gamers.' Please contribute to the Website review process by completing the Survey and letting us know what you think.