Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and More

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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby tech_admin » Tue Mar 17, 2015 1:17 pm

a dad wrote:Alternatively, there may be some server side solutions depending on the software.


I added a regex 301 redirect that applies to all links using that legacy URL scheme. The example you provided (http://www.dadsdivorce.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=13374) now redirects to http://forum.mensdivorce.com/viewtopic.php?t=13374
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby tech_admin » Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:03 pm

Outis wrote:While we're at it, I wouldn't mind an update on Tapatalk and/or new software for the forum entirely.

I'm curious what the traffic for the site shows after Tapatalk ceased to function here.


On upgrades:
Tapatalk and Forumatic bounce me back and forth. Tapatalk says they will not assist until the forum plugin is updated and Forumatic says they will not update the plugin until Tapatalk patches security issues. I have ran test migrations but there are still outstanding deal breakers when upgrading from phpBB 3.0 to 3.1. There are backwards compatibility issues with 3.0 and 3.1. EOY 2015 is still the ETA for a full upgrade.

From Tapatalk analytics:

2/2015
Average active users was 6
Total new posts was 39

1/2015
Average active users was 11
Total new posts was 558

12/2014
Average active users was 13
Total new posts was 629

11/2014
Average active users was 12
Total new posts was 1,170

10/2014
Average active users was 11
Total new posts was 773

So Tapatalk is a small set of dedicated users, likely mods and a few long-term members.

Looking at the traffic from Google Analytics since 2013 overall activity has been flat or has decreased. This is probably due two factors:
1) Forums across the web have seen flat or decreased activity due to a variety of competing social platforms.
2) Forum software has been slow to react to mobile demand.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby Outis » Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:17 pm

Wow, I really appreciate all of that. Kudos to you for the customer service.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby a dad » Tue Mar 17, 2015 2:24 pm

If the amount of new traffic went down 6mo ago, it probably had something to do with the url change and associated ramifications like the broken links and a likely associated drop in google rankings. Hopefully it'll all be bouncing back.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby tech_admin » Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:02 pm

a dad wrote:If the amount of new traffic went down 6mo ago, it probably had something to do with the url change and associated ramifications like the broken links and a likely associated drop in google rankings. Hopefully it'll all be bouncing back.


No. Traffic has been steady or declining across quarters for the last 3 years. I'm not sure how to drive home that the rebranding and hostname change did not cause a drop in traffic. I am trying to point out that traffic has been stagnant, period. The amount of dead links and errors that have been created over the course of ten years in phpBB and previous forum migrations is well beyond the scale of broken links from the recent hostname change.

My guess (as I did not decide to change the hostname) is that part of the rebranding was to increase the potential audience. Not all men affected by divorce are fathers, therefore limiting a potentially larger scope. That is not to diminish the need for dedicated resources for fathers, but to say fathers are one subset of all men going through divorce.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby a dad » Thu Aug 13, 2015 12:34 pm

1yr followup.

I go to google.com
I type in "forum.dads", then "forum.dadsdivorce.com" shows up in the drop down.
I type "forum.mens" and nothing. "forum.mensd"..."i"..."v"..."orce"...".com". Nothing.

You guys can act like there was no affect from your actions, but that's untrue.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby minuette » Thu Aug 13, 2015 1:17 pm

Dunno about that (edit: "that" meaning the implied negative impact of the change; there was a definite hit from the change in branding, but whether this will be persistent and long-term remains to be seen), awesomsauce. DD still has the higher Alexa ranking, but that is declining. Meanwhile, MD's Alexa ranking is increasing.

Try Google both terms without typing "forum." first. Typing "mensd" will bring up "Men's Divorce" on the dropdown - feeling lucky takes you to the primary http://www.mensdivorce.com site. Typing "dadsd" will bring up both the http://www.dadsdivorce.com site and the forum.

Top Keywords from Search Engines - per Alexa

www.mensdivorce.com
Keyword / Percent of Search Traffic
1. divorce forum / 32.52%
2. stbx / 16.43%
3. mens divorce / 9.86%
4. fidelity qdro / 3.48%
5. uhura / 3.15% <----that's some funny chit right there

www.dadsdivorce.com
Keyword / Percent of Search Traffic
1. child support calculator / 16.69%
2. cordell and cordell / 10.51%
3. cordell & cordell / 4.15%
4. nj child support calculator / 3.52%
5. colorado child support calculator / 3.35%
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby Outis » Thu Aug 13, 2015 1:31 pm

RIP Tapatalk :(
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby tech_admin » Thu Aug 13, 2015 1:59 pm

My position (that there was not a negative impact on traffic) is based on Google Analytics. Before the switch we had 37,000 to 40,000 user sessions a month. It varies slightly, but that's the low and high. That includes guests and registered members who are not blocking Google JS tracking. These numbers are not related to the phpBB stats you see at the bottom of the forums, which have their own issues.

After the switch, same ballpark. 37,000-40,000 user sessions. There is no growth, no loss, the traffic is the same.

Most people use a forum based around life events for a short period, then move on. Some stay and help others, but the majority go through a revolving door. Divorce is not a hobby like sports. You might contribute to baseball forums your entire life, but I hope you're not in divorce forums your entire life unless you are a paid professional.

The point is helping others through the process, maybe multiple times in their life. People will come and go. Even with growing populations, cases of divorce, etc. unless the medium of forums regains popularity, you’re not going to see impressive growth.

People who search for dads divorce forum or mens divorce forum arrive here, that's the goal. Whether Google's autocomplete function has cleared out old habits and searches is another piece of data for another position.
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Re: Forum Switch to Take Place at Midnight - Guidelines and

Unread postby a dad » Thu Aug 13, 2015 5:03 pm

That's just it. My advice is real world, based on over 3 decades online, doing everything you can come up with, while watching the trends in specs. Others advice is based on one set of everchanging technical data that is guaranteed to change over the next decade. Someday google will get knocked down a notch, just like microsoft is. If you doubt that, it just means you are young.

My thing is simply making it easier for new people to find us.

minuette wrote:Try Google both terms without typing "forum." first. Typing "mensd" will bring up "Men's Divorce" on the dropdown - feeling lucky takes you to the primary http://www. mensdivorce.com site. Typing "dadsd" will bring up both the http://www. dadsdivorce.com site and the forum.
"mensd" does not bring up "mensdivorce" when google doesn't know who you are.
"dadsd" has us first when google doesn't know who you are.

tech_admin wrote:You might contribute to baseball forums your entire life, but I hope you're not in divorce forums your entire life unless you are a paid professional.
Ma'am, I'm not sure of your intent by telling us your hopes, but it's kinda a shot in the eye for good, experienced dads who like to help out people in need. Maybe that's not your thing. I hope someday you can find that helping others in need can be a positive thing for everyone involved.
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