|Clueless About Building User Traction|
Earlier this month I launched a web based service - a simple service that many visitors found cool. The site got reviewed on a couple of popular sites in the niche and I received a good rush of traffic and additional reviews.
Now that the "storm" has subsided, I am not sure how to go about it. Sure I can go and get more reviews, and that will get me more visitors who will find it cool and will leave.
How do I build a regular traffic base? The service is somethng that will make life simpler. But people have lived without such a solution and so may not be the "life-changer" kind.
What should I do apart from getting more reviews? If you have built a successful web service that is now being regularly used by a lot of users, please share what are the things you did in the early life of the service.
Well, without knowing much about what your site offers, anand84, I'll start by asking, "Do the visitors have a good reason to return?" I.e., did they accomplish their objective on the first visit? Is the content on the site changing? Is there any kind of update or subscription process that could notify visitors of new stuff?
Building repeat traffic is difficult in some situations, but one way to do it is with community. That can provide impetus to return (say, a new "friend") and can also create new and changing content (via posts, discussions, etc.)
The service is something that a visitor might want every now and then and hence there is a good reason to come back. But from what I see, people have lived without such a solution for as long as the internet has existed. So, I am afraid that while people may find it cool and appreciate the owner for the work, they may soon get back to their old ways.
The service does not need any registration and so I am not able to capture all the visitors' info. What I have done is that I am trying to get visitors 'like' my websites' Facebook page so that I can get back to them on every feature update, etc. But that number of Facebook fans is disproportionately low at the moment so I do not know if that alone will suffice.
The service is "viral" to an extent - it is built around sharing content so I am sure that once it reaches the critical mass, it should expand forever. But I am concerned about the inertia of people stopping me from reaching the critical mass.
Is there anything you can think of that I can do apart from getting reviews and "spreading the word"?
Given the social aspect, you might consider tying in some game elements to drive repeat visits and other user actions. If users are getting feedback from your service that they are doing the actions you value, and are getting some sense of status from those actions, they may be more inclined to share generally or more specifically invite their friends to participate. Things such as points and achievements can be effective depending on context.