The Other Side of the Coin - Dealing with the Onboarding Issue and Some Ways of Helping — Steemit

The Other Side of the Coin - Dealing with the Onboarding Issue and Some Ways of Helping

in steemit •  2 years ago

Introduction - the Other Side of the Coin

Coin

I've been discussing ideas for promoting Steemit a lot recently (for example in yesterday's post) and it is something that I will continue to work on but that is one side of the coin in getting new users on Steemit.

The other side is actually enabling them to use Steemit and actually find answers/help when they need it and keeping them on the platform long enough to do so without them being discouraged to the point of giving up.

There is no point in bringing lots of people to the platform through promotion only for them to leave through frustration a short time later.

That is the equivalent of flushing our time, effort and money down the metaphorical toilet.

Further it might also make it harder to bring those same people back at a later time, not to mention the potential for them to spread negative feelings amongst other potential users.

Rather than letting things get to that stage we need to make it easier for new users to find the help that they need and where possible educate themselves:


Onboarding

In occupational terms this issue is known as "onboarding" - here is the Wikipedia definition:

Onboarding, also known as organizational socialization, refers to the mechanism through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviors to become effective organizational members and insiders.[1] Tactics used in this process include formal meetings, lectures, videos, printed materials, or computer-based orientations to introduce newcomers to their new jobs and organizations.

Although we are not an employer as such, much of the issues are the same as discussed in the definition above.

Whilst in person interventions are certainly possible, as a web based platform it is most fruitful (and cost effective) to employ web based methods of onboarding.


My Progress So Far

Last week I posted about a website I had created called Steemithelp.net to provide some assistance as a central resource for guides on Steemit.

With Steemithelp.net the aim is to provide them with a central location that collates user guides in an easy to navigate manner.

Steemithelp

I have gradually been updating it with some of my posts for new users including most recently the Quick Start Guide (which takes new users from registering to making their first post in a stepwise manner).

On a side note if any of the Steemit team would like to link to the site or the individual posts such as the Quick Start Guide, please feel free to do so.

Further I would be happy to host other content on there too (contact me in the chat if you want to discuss it further).


Visibility Issues

One of the remaining problems though is how to get new users to go there and also other locations that would be useful (such as the FAQ, chat, Steemtools etc).

Currently users need to click on the rather anonymous icon in the top right corner to bring up these kind of options.

Not only is the icon easily missed but it is also inconsistent with the rest of the interface. Even when I have explained where it is, users have had a hard time finding and using it.

The icon in the image below is hard to spot and it isn't really clear what it does to new users:

Screenshot 1

Illustration of how the current menu opens:

Screenshot 2


A possible solution

Remove the icon and replace it with a menu which mirrors the placement of the different feeds as so:

Screenshot 3

This is easier to spot, self explanatory and consistent with the current way of using Steemit.

It should not be difficult to implement and would at least show new users exactly where to go if they need help.

Also any remaining items that can't be fit in this position could be placed at the very top of the page as show below by the red text:

Screenshot 4


Conclusions

Usability

I think the simple interface change discussed above would make a big difference for new users and the usability of the site in general.

The big advantage is that it needn't take a lot of time and effort to implement either.

What do you think?


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Great post I agree with your suggestions and I will make great use of your help pages.
One further point to add. Has there been any discussion on a splash page for users feeds or even a sticky thread so when someone goes to your feed they can get some info you want to share?

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Yes it has been discussed before and it is in the informal roadmap to have profile pages - there are no firm dates for it though but I think it was even mentioned when Ned was last on Steemspeak.

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Thanks and btw love the site https://www.steemithelp.net/
This site should be the splash page for steemit.

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The only problem with steemithelp is when I got to the bottom of a very interesting page "etiquette" there was no voting button :(

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Thank you:)

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I notice you're using bit.ly on your links. are you getting any usable engagement metrics?

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Yes it does give a very basic breakdown on the number of clicks. I've only been using them on Facebook until now but thought I would try them in other places both to save time and to use the metrics more. So far the data from FB was only giving between 5-10 clicks. I think I should use them for twitter too as I often hit the character limit before tagging.

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Is it possible you could put up a quick tutorial on how to use bit.ly? I would pay.

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No need to pay lol. It really is very easy. If you are not in a rush I could probably just add it on to the end of my next post tomorrow or something - won't be very long.

Great post and views! Agree with most of them and thanks for creating the website, will make sure to link it to newcomers in the future!

Also love the original photos you provide! You are a perfect example of the perfect Steemian. :)

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Thanks. That is very kind of you:)

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Yeah: @acidyo explained why you're such an easy upvote. Lots of folks like me want you rewarded & have more influence around here. You are a good influence; that's for sure.

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Aw guys you are too kind to me. I'm just trying to do my bit and I think we all help each other here - the community is the reason I keep coming back. Thank you for your support it means a lot:)

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I'm actually surprised that you haven't registered as a witness. Right after I wrote what I wrote, I went to the Witness page so as to vote for you.

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I might do it at some point but right now I would rather concentrate my efforts on writing and also even more importantly getting back to work as I have been off for the last couple of years following a chronic issue with my pancreas that resulted in me becoming a type I diabetic. It really knocked my confidence - other than going to the gym I became a virtual recluse.

That's why I had so much time but I need to look at getting myself sorted out financially and career wise.

Once I'm back on my feet I might use the cash to get someone to run a witness server for me.

Another great idea! I have been manually sending a list of links to new users to help them get this basic info when they join because they can't seem to find their way around easily. Your suggestions would go a long way in helping newbies. Seems like a no brainer.

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Thanks. Yes that is the aim. The ideal of course would be for Steemit itself to centralise all of this but my site is temporary workaround (or could be a backup in case of problems).

Upvoted and resteemed!!!!!

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Thank you:)

"There is no point in bringing lots of people to the platform through promotion only for them to leave through frustration a short time later."

Bingo.

Focus not on growth right now, but on making a quality core, solid product or service with a solid direction, to start with. Then grow and expand. Lets start off strong with one direction, not fractured into many different directions. I mentioned this on another post comment today.

We also can use with greater inter-connectivity and functionality in the platform before we can think of retaining most modern and millennial users who are accustomed to a certain level of interconnective simplicity. I opened github issues/requests for following posts we like to be notified of comments so we can interact more easily. Right now its only on comments we make, i we make them at all on posts we like. I also suggest. Reblog notifications is another one.

If the feature base can become more socially interconnected, like PMs as well, then that makes people able to share attention and information more easily, and more quickly in the immediate now. This will greatly accelerate the success of the Steemit platform via the community.

P.S.EDIT Great site, rockin it. But,please make FAQ subsections at the top with anchor links to each section if you're doing one long page. Otherwise it's not a fun thing to go through. Thanks for the great work!

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Thanks those are great ideas. I still think we can work on both but I see your point. My concern is that if we don't focus on getting new users at all we will never get to the non-beta or completed state. When Facebook first launched it was pretty minimal but they were already working on promotion. I think we need to work on both whist being careful not to sabotage one or the other.

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Ok, great example, FB. I personally have no clue, but what was it like? What features did they have, when they did start promoting? I would like to know. And also, take into consideration at that time, the level or bar was lower, as the social media we have today did not exist in 2003-2005. So the features to start off would not be comparable to today's features. Also, FB created many of the social media features we now use. Thanks.

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It was pretty empty and yes it was a different time for sure. A lot more text and fewer photos. No advertising or monetisation either. It was really quiet too as not many people were on. Initially I saw it and didn't use it - my brother starting using it very early and I would see his feed and posts and wonder what the point was! It is hard to remember exactly what it was like now though because we take so much of these things for granted now and one of the problems is that memory is very fallible and fluid. Might be a good exercise to use something like the wayback machine to have an objective look.

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I also see growth as an organic thing that comes with quality of product or service, and word of mouth in society. It can be helped with promotion and ads for sure. To try to get quantity of users too early may be the wrong way to go about it. It will come. Build it and they will come, as they told Kevin Costner.

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Yes absolutely - I think we saw how that works when we had the price peaks in July. Good points as always mate.

Upvoted and shared on Twitter✔ for my followers to read. Thanks for sharing. Great piece. Stephen

https://twitter.com/StephenPKendal/status/803690247322300416

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StephenPKendal Stephen P Kendal tweeted @ 29 Nov 2016 - 20:01 UTC

The Other Side of the Coin - Dealing with the Onboarding Issue and Some Ways of Helping..!! @Steemit

steemit.com/steemit/@thecr… / https://t.co/WgLiY7VN6R

Disclaimer: I am just a bot trying to be helpful.

Shared this post on Gab.ai with these exact words:

If anyone here looked at #Steem from the links I provided and got a wee bit overwhelmed, I want to call attention to thecryptofiend : he's a one-man director of Help Resources:

followed by a link to this page. I meant every word of it.

Even if I called you a wunderkind at HR :D

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Thanks you are too kind:) I have heard of Gab recently - what is it like?

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It's pretty damn good, in my humble opinion. I fit right in.

The bulk of the people there are alt-right, alt-lite, or some other kind of right - but that's because Twitter's been kicking them off, shadowbanning them, handing them the brunt of the double standard, etc. The founder has said repeatedly that it's open to everyone. But given the above, righties are the bulk of the clientele right now.

It's possible that there could be an "entryist" wave of folks like you and me (my other side) to set up & populate a Cryptocurrency Corner in Gab, but anyone who tries will have to get along with or tolerate righties.

Since I'm a self-identified righty, I've had zero problems fitting in.

One reason to join - to sign up for the waiting list here - https://gab.ai - is just to look over the interface; in my opinion, it's a dream - lots better than Twitter's. This last point is something that @dantheman , @ned or another core-level techie should consider.

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Thanks I will take a look when I have time - I don't mind who the current users are as it is early days.

I don't consider myself a "rightie" lol but I think a lot of people think I am - I think if you believe in small government and libertarian ideas you automatically get labelled that way. I will take a look when I have a moment (right now I have so many things I am trying to juggle simultaneously).

Might also be an idea to see what other people are doing and the ideas they are coming up with - useful research.

I find I use Twitter less and less interesting nowadays. OK have added myself to the list:

Done! You're #1319983 in the waiting list.

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Great! Just to let you know, my username there is the same as here: @nxtblg .

PLease let us know when you get your invite, including your username!

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Cool. Assuming it is not taken I will use the same but will let you know if I can't.

I really do agree with how the interface could be improved further. all i know is i was pulling quite a bit of my hair out trying to figure out navigation my first week in.

then again, i also put it down to the fact that i always don't have a good affinity with technology. lol

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Great points - you are not the only one. I think it is the job of good technology to adapt to your needs rather than the other way around - I think I learned that in part from the example that Steve Jobs and Apple set.

I like coins and pets. And the good stuff in between. Also shared on twitter

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Thank you so much:)

I agree, I believe the lack of instructions and lack of user ease is 1 of the major issues with steemit.
Thats why i built a site myself 2 months ago to tackle the very same thing. It is in the steem apps link...
http://howtosteemit.com/

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Cool. I'm sorry I missed it earlier will check it out.

It doesn't do us any good to get new stakeholders if they don't stay.

this might be a good video for your steemit help web site

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Thanks I will add it. I think I will do a page just for video tutorials because some people just prefer that method of learning and they don't take up much space on the page. Are there any others you think are good?

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dont have any more now, but I think a good tutorial I can do is showing how to convert steem and sbd on the internal market

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Actually never thought of that. Yes that is probably the most obvious one - thanks and look forward to it.

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OK it didn't take long (no text to re-edit or reformat) - here is the link: https://www.steemithelp.net/videos/

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sweeet, I'm now inspired to do more video tutorials and promote that page

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Cool. Thanks that would be great:) Have you done any on Blocktrades - buying and selling Steem. I have my written tutorial but would be useful to have a video one too.

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the visa debit video includes a blocktrades transaction, but i can do one just for blockades alone

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OK no problem - I should have watched more closely:) A separate one would be great too though.

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Thank you that is very kind:)

I am not a fan of promoted onboarding. I prefer that people join organically through the success of users. I think Medium did this well. This also depends on the financial situation of corporate. My way is much more passive but will build the strongest foundation.

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There is no reason we can't have both.

I'm totally with you on this great observation and idea. Putting those items upfront without needing to find the 'menu' button should be a huge benefit.

So far my only suggestion for the help site might be to include something on 'finding people/people finding you' side of things. (I may have missed it in there.) This could just be including steemit.chat (with maybe the 5 main promo rooms and how to find topic specific ones) and perhaps some of the discord communities (steemspeak, steem venue, steem pub, maybe beyond bitcoin on mumble, etc.)

Love the site though, very well organized with great 'ramp up' info!

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Thanks. It is in the mini FAQ (which is not that mini now that I look at it!). I think I might put together something new and separate on that as we now have Discord too and to make it easier to find. It might be worth doing a post and collating some ideas and tips from others too - I might make it more fun by giving out some Steem to the best idea. People seem to enjoy that and it helps to get people talking too.

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Ah, I thought it was in there somewhere but missed it looking through this time. Def no worries. I could see many enjoying putting some of that together with a steem reward. If helpful, I did this post a while back on some of the voice chats out there, I know I forgot to include steemtrails in there, maybe others were missed too.

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OK thanks I will check it out:)

It costs far more to win people back who've left than to win them in the first place. You're exactly right. We're better off making sure we have what it takes to keep folks, because if we lure them with fake bait or empty promises, they'll be disgruntled. And, let's face it, payouts are not enough right now for folks to stay unless they have a greater vision.

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Yes exactly mate. I think some of these interface issues would not take much effort to sort out but would make a big difference.

Great work and ideas. Easy to understand and use documentation is so very important to new emerging technologies and ways of doing things like Steemit! I'll try to think of some ideas to help out as well as take a look at what is already out there!

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Thanks. All help is appreciated:)

I enjoyed your documentation efforts, and as previously expressed they were quite helpful.

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Thank you:)

@craig-grant ... And to continue with my post. There are still "many" major hurdles with and for the Steemit platform.

Consider the end user. Not a tech-savvy geek who understands "pwned". (For your previous post - @thecryptofiend) 😀👍 Yeah, get it.. 'But I'm still looking through a glass darkly' 😎.

@craig-grant ... The video of your transfer... Appreciated! ::Yet Painful:: (lol). I just "lost" my first Bitcoin Wallet trying to transact between coinbase and bittrex - via my phone. ::Damn!:: I thought I was getting the hang of this thing (in less than 72 hours) 🤔 ...$95.01 of bitcoin POOF ... Lost in the blockchain! (Forever?) - Not sure. 😶

Just wanted to buy some "Steem", not a big deal... But it quickly became a "big deal". No- not the money ... The experience.

"Steemians" of origin of old (well ok, not so old) GET "this" ... If you make a better "front-end" the 'crowd' will come. If the ability to transfer dc, use and understand the platform.. You get 👀.

People like me - the 'old tech' we won't leave, we just adapt. The point, you're classmates... You know- the neophytes 🐊 they are the ones who 👣 and 💋 this beginning goodbye.

I say this to help, not hinder or criticize. Perhaps someone could help me find my wallet! 😜

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Thanks for the helpful articles. Just finished the help guide.

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You're welcome:)