How do you decide what to do in a community?


(Laleh moli) #1

we have around 2000 users in our community, and the retention rate is too low (1-2%).

what would you focus on, if you were us?

  • user acquisition and increase the number of users,
  • user retention
  • forget about the work! and start some other business :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

0 voters

I’d appreciate if you explain hows and whys as well.

(Richard Millington) #2

Can you explain a little more about what you mean by the retention rate? Is this how many of those whom have joined are active? Or how many in, say, the last month are still participating?

(Laleh moli) #3

this is the retention rate google analytics gave us, for users in the past
few months (i.e. the cohort analysis).

p.s.: Thanks for your answer, I didn’t expect an answer in holidays :wink:

(Richard Millington) #4

Any chance you can share the table itself? I want to see how it compares to a few other clients.

My instinct is it’s probably about normal rather than too low. Google Analytics isn’t always a great tool for measuring communities.

(Chris Detzel) #5

@lolmol I think you have to work on both. You can get 100,000 new members, but if they aren’t doing anything, then what is the point? One of my main goals this year is to grow the membership of our community by a hefty amount. Another one of my goals is to make sure that the content that is created is created for members to engage in, but also for new acquisition, through Google.

My recommendation:

  1. Look at your goals and see what you have to accomplish
  2. Create a content plan that are in line with these goals
  3. Create a marketing plan so that you can accomplish an engagement plan, and a new acquisition plan.

(Chris Detzel) #6

Really? I’m interested in what you think is a great tool then. We look at Google analytics for:

  1. Pageviews
  2. Average time on page
  3. Bounce rate
  4. Sessions

We use Telligent as a platform and they have some analytics that help you understand engagement. Who is adding content, who is replying to what, likes and other engagement activities.

(Laleh moli) #7


thanks, but I think we should prioritize one to another. e.g. use our 70% of resources to growth and the rest 30% on retention, or vise verse.

during the past 3 months, we put our main effort on growth in the retention rate, and it only came up from 0.9 in the first day to around 1.7 as you see. it’s doubled, but if we want to grow like this, …

(Richard Millington) #8

Ok, I think you’re using completely the wrong metrics here :slight_smile:

By comparison, here’s a client example:

At the very least you need to use a cohort analysis tool from a community (@Bas_van_Leeuwen).

But, really, I’d ask what is the business goal of the community? How many people contribute at the moment? What happens when you ask people why they drop out?

@Chris_Detzel Google Analytics is designed to measure advertising, not communities. Whatever the goal of your community is, I bet Google Analytics can’t measure it. It instead drives people to get as much engagement as they possibly can.

(Laleh moli) #9

why do you call it “wrong metric”? this is the cohort analysis of google,
there may be some error as I guess it works based on ip.

(Richard Millington) #10

hi @lolmol,

I wasn’t trying to say the data itself is wrong, the data is probably pretty close to the mark.

The problem is it’s measuring visitor data and not the member or participation data.

This includes everyone who arrives at any of the pages on your site for the first time and how frequently they visit again (it also doesn’t cover when they visit from different devices etc…).

The problems here are:

  1. A cohort analysis is useful for knowing whether newcomers are converting into regulars, but Google doesn’t do a great job of highlighting this. I’d make sure you’re using a tool designed for communities. I can’t think of anyone that uses the cohort analysis tool for a community. No matter what you do, those percentages there won’t change much. In fact, the more popular you become, the lower they’re likely to be.

  2. You need to know if the community is helping you achieve your goals. What are the goals of the community? My guess is a cohort analysis tool won’t answer them unless it’s to sell advertising.

  3. If you are going to measure the health of the community, look at the number of unique, new, members, the level of participation, and (possibly) the sense of community.

(Laleh moli) #11

thanks for your kind description, but then are there some other ways or tools to measure the retention of users?

as Chris_Detzel mentioned before: “You can get 100,000 new members, but if they aren’t doing anything, then what is the point?”

and if we can’t measure their retention, we can never be sure how we are doing in managing the community.

(Nick Emmett) #12

Hi @lolmol - perhaps we can try to help you more if let us know what the goal of your Community is - what’s your WHY?! Why does it exist? What does your organization hope to achieve by having a community? Why would customers or members come? What’s in it for them?

(Laleh moli) #13

Thanks Nick for your questions,

basically we have a community of practice, and the main objective is to
collectively share knowledge so that everyone learns more (so people come
to share and to learn).

I hope this answers all the whys :wink: let me know if not.

(Richard Millington) #14

So I’d look at metrics related to:

  1. Survey results of member satisfaction/relevancy/time saved.

  2. Number of items of knowledge / articles shared.

  3. Number of visits to useful knowledge items shared.

These are probably more reflective of success than the absolute number of members or cohort analysis.

(tamara Parris) #15

Seems like a bulk chart of all users. .

Do you have various sectors in your community? does everyone look at same content and engage exactly same? or do they have various value needs?

(tamara Parris) #16

I would also look at “Attention depth” on your content. to understand better did memebrs read or just glance and bounce.

Did they comment? if so is there trends emerging in the comments? etc -

Also - Comments are an indicator of deeper committement level because you have to take more time, effort and think about what your sharing out for others to read.