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PoohBear

Anyone care to comment?

http://thechilloutzone.myfreeforum.org/index.php

Hey Everyone,

I've been working on my Forum for a couple of weeks now.  Although it isn't quite as up to scratch as I'd like it to be.  I'd really love some input from people with more experience on the how it looks at the moment.  I have ran a few poker forums in the past, but it's not quite the same LoL.

I really would appreciate any advice or thoughts anyone may have.  I am not afraid of constructive critisism, so please feel free to leave me your honest thoughts, if you feel like you'd like to give me some input.

I don't really have much traffic besides a few friends, so I know that traffic is an issue.  It's the main feel and look of the forum I'd like input on.

Many thanks in advance.

Toodles
PoohBear
Bravo

My advice would be if you use that format of text a lot on your forum, it will certainly hurt a lot of peoples eyes, especially male readers will have more trouble reading it.  Light text on a light background is quite difficult as it is, and the small font only doubles the problem, indeed I have only read the first few lines of your post.

Using colouring for entire posts in this way can also cause problems in the future if you were to perhaps change to a violet coloured template there would be whole swathes of posts that are completely unreadable.  Colouring is for highlighting.

Hope that's helpful to you  Wink
Zudane

It looks nice, I do have a few suggestions - you can choose to accept them or not.

I am not a fan of the purple, but I can see you have other templates installed.... I would say though that you should limit those down.  You have 16 styles available, on mine I limit it to how many I can customize.  While I could go for more, I choose to keep it limited to just a few, otherwise it's just too confusing, unless it's simply color themes for the same style.

And since my forum originated as a general chat, I want to point this out... general chats are VERY hard to get going, you need something to draw people in, a reason to join rather than just being able to chat - can do that anywhere.  Find a specific part of chat that you and your friends are most comfortable with and try to stick with that as a central idea - but definitely allow other chats.

As well... you should limit down your forums for now.  It's better to have 5 busy forums than 15 slow forums.  If you can combine them, then do so.  Say... eliminate the sub forums for most of those forums, and just put in the description that they can talk about any of those there.  If one of them gets busy enough to need it's own forum, THEN make it.

Might want to make the staff room hidden from non-staff view, move introductions into the general chat or welcome forum, maybe combine the celeb news with the box, comedy with general,  gamers with gambling...

I had a lot of forums on mine to begin with, and I later realized that they weren't getting that many posts in each.  Once I condensed them down into fewer forums, like I put pictures and videos together, comedy, quotes, and the general chat went together, etc, then there was more activity in each forum, because there is more that can go into each one.

To sum up my suggestions:
Fewer themes
Fewer subforums (only when needed)
Fewer forums (condense them down)
myff admin

I have not looked, frankly when I see a post here that is purple and centered and hence less readable than it should be, then all the warning bells sound  

Forums are for reading and posting!
Full Tilt Boogie

admin (no pm's please) wrote:
I have not looked, frankly when I see a post here that is purple and centered and hence less readable than it should be, then all the warning bells sound  

Forums are for reading and posting!


The above is some of the more salient advice you'll receive here, and a very neat summary of my own immediate opinion too.

I'll be honest, as far as Web forums go, and how they are presented to attract new members (and retain existing members!), too many people make the mistake of being a triumph of style over content - and the way you post here [i.e. the style in which] you post is symptomatic of that. I didn't go to your site because of the way you post above - if your board is anything like the way you post here, it requires work just reading it, and any board which hurts the eyes is just off-putting. In short, it grabs the attention - but for all the wrong reasons.

As a board Admin, you need to think about your members' "user experience" - get that wrong and you consign you forum to obscurity and low member/user traffic.

The winning adage for any Web forum is simple: "CONTENT IS KING!" Give people a reason to visit, join and then post regularly on your site.

Without that, you can have the funkiest looking board on the Web and it won't matter - all it'll be populated by is tumbleweed as opposed to active members and frequent posters. Boards which are not busy (i.e. where members only post infrequently) are also a turn off for potential new members - why would anyone join a board where there's nothing going on? Hence worthwhile content - the key incentive to make them join!

Hope that helps and good luck with your board!!  
Full Tilt Boogie

Forum Notice on 'The Chill Out Zone' website wrote:
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http://thechilloutzone.myfreeforum.org/index.html

I take it thing's are what they should be over there?

Has it died, or is it just under reconstruction?

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