greenleaves - 5:17 am on May 27, 2010 (gmt 0)
1/ What do you think of the site on the whole?
It is an ok resource... used to be a great resource. Like many 'webmaster'/'marketeer' forums, the ratio of knowledgeable people/noobs is getting worse and worse. The few 'respected' members left tend to be old in age and stuck in their ways. So what happens is new people come in, ask the same questions, and get the same answers. The dynamics of the old webmaster world have changed dramatically.
2/ The brand?
A good brand on the decline... desperately needing a change in direction.
3/ The value?
If worked properly very high. As it is, declining.
What is your OVERALL impression of the site?
Read the answer to question #1.
* Make a clearer distinction of areas for newbies and for more experienced members. DON'T allow advanced conversations to be derailed by newbs. It kills the flow. Yes, your new members may not feel as welcome, but the advanced ones will... and they are what attract the newbies anyway. And I believe there is a middle ground to the 'newb hand holding' currently going on in this forum, and the newb attach that goes on in places like wickedfire
* Allow more freedom in discussion. URL/product mention restrictions are way too draconian.
* Get some high quality posters in here. Look up a person who has a blog about 'blue hat seo'. Get that person... and other such people on here. I don't know what you have to do to get them... but upping the signal to noise ratio of this site is paramount.
* Make the supporters forum based on invitation, which comes from good, quality posts. It is rather insulting that good members that contribute content don't get in there, while people who don't contribute anything and pay a measly fee get in there. It is part of what is deteriorating the signal to noise ration. I think Brett should really look at this video: hxxp://www.wimp.com/surprisingmotivation/
* As part of my past point, motivate good content. The forum does not do enough to motivate good content providers.
* Cut off ad museum argument posters. They will always harm conversations... it will happen in every forum, but WebmasterWorld is particularly prone to this.
Simply put, get the experts to participate more... and the newbies to participate without interfering in the 'expert' interaction.
I think the current design is ok... the layout of the forum sections could use improving (i.e. less sections; consolidate them).