18

According to our Area51 site, this site has 3 very weak areas:

  • Questions per day (.9 as of this post; 1.4 as of 7 May 2013; 2 as of 21 Oct 2013; 2.1 as of 25 April 2014; 2.2 as of 23 March 2016)
  • Avid Users (48 users with 200+ rep; 1 user with 2000+ rep as of this post; 140 users with 200+ rep and 8 users with 2000+ rep as of 7 May 2013; 162 users with 200+ rep and 12 users with 2000+ rep as of 21 Oct 2013; 185 users with 200+ rep and 15 users with 2000+ rep as of 25 April 2014; 301 users with 200+ rep and 28 users with 2000+ rep as of 23 March 2016)
  • Visits per day (160 as of this post; 1150 as of 7 May 2013; 2241 as of 21 Oct 2013; 3066 as of 25 April 2014; 5454 as of 23 March 2016)

That is not good at all, especially considering all of the topics that are umbrella(ed) by this site.

So my question for you is: how, as a community, can we get back on track, so that we don't end up like The Quiet Ones?

  • 2
    +1, I would be sad for this site to go – Benny Apr 28 '12 at 0:48
  • With regard to avid users, we need to ensure that we are voting up good questions and answers so that users get the rep that they deserve. – Ste May 27 '12 at 19:21
  • 5
    Sad to see this site go...stops visiting this site two weeks later. – user527 Jan 23 '13 at 20:46
15

The usual method of driving traffic is:

1. Create good content

See an interesting question? Know something about the subject, or know where to find out? Write an amazing answer; answer the question and then go above and beyond.

Don't see any interesting questions? Ask one. It's hard for everyone else to write great answers without questions to answer. Hot topics can help; for spectator sports, you may be able to ask a question about a play you've just seen or one that is particularly controversial. Odds are you won't be the only one who had the question, so you can...

2. Promote the content

So we have good questions and good answers. Now we need to let people know they exist.

Are you on Twitter/Facebook/other social media1? Did someone ask a question that we've already covered? Let them know! If they discover that we're good at answering questions, they'll come back for more. And maybe they'll tell their friends about us too.

Don't forget about sites like Reddit; a reddited question usually results in a spike of traffic, some of which we can (hopefully) convert into regular users.

1Of course, this works for face-to-face communication too. I feel like such a geek now.

  • 3
    To back this up, I submitted this question to Reddit. The result was the most views we have had on any single day since the site opened, plus two badges for the question asker, plus three badges for me (including the first gold badge awarded on entire site). Hopefully some people who visited liked what they saw and will be back; we'll see. – Michael Myers May 2 '12 at 18:20
  • this is the best example I can think of for showing people how to promote the site. There is some fantastic content here from the current community, but we need more people promoting their answers or questions. – Will Cole May 7 '12 at 14:53
  • I think we need to get our scope down, and carve it into stone. Shall I propose a scope? – Dynamic May 10 '12 at 20:15
  • 4
    @MichaelMyers - do you have any tips for submitting to Reddit? It's not a service I've used before but if we got 1000 additional unique IPs for one question then we should definitely be looking at that option more often. – Ste May 27 '12 at 19:23
8

I've been thinking about this a bit in terms of scope and think we could make a an effort to tap into sports from a modern sports fans perspective:

  1. Questions about rules (usually very specific and niche) seem to do well here. These usually include the origination of the rule, application, or interpretation that the person answering clarifies while citing the rule. These are good as long as they are not just asking about the specific rule, but those other things I mention above.
  2. A rising theme especially in baseball, but elsewhere in sports is around statistics analysis. Mainly meaning how to use statistics in order to value player performance, team performance, and ties into prediction. We could reach out to other stack communities in math and statistics to bring some of that here.
  3. Fantasy Sports - Fair game? Having these two communities split at this point doesn't make a lot of sense. Fantasy sports are a huge part of what it means to be a fan now, and it may be a good idea to combine the general sports site with fantasy sports with the knowledge that they could be split again in the future.
  4. Products, gear etc... - These types of consumer type questions seem to be less interesting but somewhat prevalent. They are almost entirely opinion based (what's the best thing to use) and stick out quite a bit. Mark these as off topic?
  5. Trivia - These types of questions are only really good when they're very obscure, entail a lot of research (more than just a link to 1 wikipedia article) and in some cases require access to expensive databases. If we can get more of those types of trivia questions, it would be beneficial.
  6. Other non algorithmic prediction questions could be interesting even if they didn't include hard statistical analysis. Example: Who should the Jets start: Tim Tebow or Mark Sanchez. A great answer could include records of each QB against opponents on next years schedule, performances against certain defensive schemes etc... Not purely opinion based answers, but answers that cite specific reasoning behind what is still essentially an opinion.

These types of questions value expert style answers. Any thoughts?

  • Fantasy sports I can sort of agree on. But most of the fantasy questions I can think of off the top of my head would be too localized (e.g. "Should I start X or Y this week?"). – Michael Myers May 18 '12 at 18:40
  • Not completely sure about equipment - I'm inclined to allow them, but they seem to languish without answers, and that makes them useful to no one at all. – Michael Myers May 18 '12 at 19:23
  • An analysis of these points almost four years later: 1) Pretty much the bulk of our content on Sports SE; 2) Point taken; 3) Determined to be off-topic; 4) Less interesting how? Equipment choice can be very important based on the athlete's sport and skill level, and thus, would be expertise-driven; – user527 Mar 28 '16 at 19:03
  • 5) Pretty much the same analysis that we have now. The statistics point investigates research for these kind of questions; 6) I provided a similar stance for fantasy sports, but was shot down. I doubt those questions can work even with objective stats because as you state, it is still essentially an opinion, and it is prone to speculation/predicting the future. – user527 Mar 28 '16 at 19:06
6

I don't want to sound bitter but I think there's no consensus on what is on/off-topic. I know that the site and the concept is still work in progress but I think people are getting over-zealous with questions.

The motivation behind my statement is based on the fact that I've had two questions recently which regards sports equipment which faced, what I see as unnecessary criticism on the grounds of being off-topic.

I think so far majority of the questions I have encountered here are of the nature "what are the rules regarding ...?" I feel such questions and their rulebook-citation answers make the Q/A nothing more than a substitute for effective Google searches. If this beta is to make it big one needs to look over that issue.

2

IMHO we can up vote posts more often. Many users answer questions, but don't up vote them. I know we should not upvote every question/answer, but there are many good content with score of 0, 1 or 2.

This year only 5 users have voted more than 100 times, only 24 users have earned the Suffrage badge (Used 30 votes in a day). That's not enough. Expatriates SE is in beta for 3 months but has much more votes.

  • Point taken. Do you feel our votes are valuable on Sports SE? That is, are our votes being used appropriately and properly? This has been a discussion in the past. – user527 Jun 25 '14 at 15:58

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