Forum or comments: what is better for business?
In the process of developing the company’s website at a certain point, the challenge arises – we need a constant influx of fresh, relevant and unique content. He really likes it and search engines, and ordinary people.
In the area with regular updating of the range (when new products, books, courses, offers appear weekly), the product itself becomes the source of such content – the site is updated with pages with its description. You can add content from users – reviews or comments to the product.
If the assortment is replenished less frequently (for example, a new service or product line appears every six months), then their descriptions will not be enough to regularly update the site. Two systems for generating content come to the rescue – a blog and a forum.
Forum called the Internet platform for communication and disputes on various topics. A blog is a kind of online diary on which author’s materials are published. More information about creating and maintaining a blog, we wrote here.
Which is better: a blog or a forum?
In the case of a blog “agenda” you ask. You decide what to write about in the articles, how often to upload them, what volume and format they will be. You can give blog visitors an opportunity to express their opinions in the comments to these articles.
If your potential customers need and it is important to get an expert, professional opinion to make a purchasing decision, then a blog is the best option here. You will be an expert in it, examining the various nuances of your products, highlighting the trends and innovations in your field, making reviews of products or examples of work. At the same time, people will have the opportunity to ask clarifying questions or express their opinions on the subject in question in the comments. In more detail about why this opportunity is useful, we tell in article about comments.
The forum is suitable for another situation – when a person is not inclined to be guided by expert opinion before buying (or fears that the expert will impose goods on him), but wants to get advice from ordinary people, like himself, only more experienced ones. There are several options here.
The first option is to go on the social network and throw a cry among your friends or subscribers – surely, among them there will be someone with the right example from life. Or search in the same social networks for the relevant group.
And although the widespread use of social networks at one time has weakly weakened the popularity of forums, the latter still have their advantages:
forums are available for people who do not have accounts in social networks (yes, they still exist);
if the forum is posted on the website, while viewing which the question arose, then you should not go far and look for suitable groups in social networks;
At the moment, you will see the contents of the forums in the search results when querying various tips (and not at all the social networking pages):
Search results pages of forums
Therefore, the second option is to get the necessary advice – ask a question on a thematic forum.
Another criterion by which you can distinguish between the audience of blogs and the audience of forums is the frequency of demand.
If demand is episodic, that is, the need for a product arises from an individual not so often (buying an apartment, studying abroad, opening an IP), then he doesn’t need to constantly monitor the situation in the area of this interest; basis to make the decision on the appeal to this or that company. Here the blog is better suited, a person will find in it a couple of detailed articles on his subject and, subject to the literacy of the authors, he will resolve all the incomprehensible moments for himself. It will be faster than shoveling a few dozen forum posts, then ask your question, wait for an answer, clarify your question, then wait for an answer again, and so on.
If the demand is periodic, that is, it occurs quite often (every month, every season), then it is useful to “be in touch” in order to be able to choose the best offers, and not the ones that the advertising wants to impose on you. From examples: the sale of consumables or building materials, spare parts, cosmetics.
In addition, periodic demand may reflect a person’s enthusiasm for a particular topic (car enthusiasts, gardeners, young mothers, and avid travelers). From here, there will be a desire not only to understand the topic, but also to discuss it – to share your thoughts and approaches, argue with other people, teach beginners to the mind-mind or listen to the guru.
Thus, the forum is more suitable for finding real experience and the opportunity to share your experience.
Also, no one forbids to place on the site and blog and forum at the same time.
What is the profit from the forum on the site?
The forum can benefit both the site visitors and its owner. Please note that here we are talking about a working forum – in which there are users (and not only bots), there are discussions on the topic, in other words – there is “life”.