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The new SR - Your ideas

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scholl24
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« Reply #45: December 09, 2018, 05:35:16 AM »
I do  like this thread. Rob, thanks for taking care of us.

Im late to the party but I do agree on the point system and the shorter reviews as well. Sometimes I was writing my experience on a product that was reviewed 30 other times, because after all everyones experience is different, but I ended up saying the same things as the other 30 reviewers. Not  a problem, just a little nusiance to restate the ingredient profile everytime.


admin2
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« Reply #46: December 09, 2018, 07:52:06 PM »
Just checked on Semrush, examine looks to have taken a similar hit to SR.

So Tommy. Now that you know more. What should we do? Would you still carry on with the site in its current form?

We are leaning towards relaunching with supplement brand reviews. Google doesn't seem to have a problem with brands.

Hmm, maybe brand names are one step far away enough from supplements themselves?  A good thing to look at would be which pages were not affected.  Also, check some of the top previous keywords and see what's ranking in SR's place.  What sort of supplement information is working now?  It's not like the first 5 results for different keywords are now just empty.

One of the reasons I stepped away was because I was sick of the SEO industry.  It's so frustrating when crappy sites are outranking you.  In this case, it seems like everyone is getting hit though.  Google kept saying "don't focus on SEO - just focus on creating a great, informative website and you will be rewarded".  Well, I spent a long time doing that, and it doesn't seem to be happening.  It's hard to really think about it without getting myself all worked up.


RoarRob
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« Reply #47: December 10, 2018, 10:04:27 AM »
Brand and ecommerce reviews look like a safe option. We're not giving out health advice with those. If that works we can then go back to individual product reviews.

There isn't a right answer. It's a case of looking at what is ranking and then testing.


MarsheS
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« Reply #48: December 10, 2018, 11:28:39 AM »
I tried Redcon1 MRE review and we're in the first page. Same thing with VMI Major Mass review, Dymatize Pre W.O. review, etc. Brands were interested in coming to SR, then that means we were doing a good job. The brands weren't going to those sites, the brands were coming here. So who was doing a good job and who wasn't? I can't even say anymore to just keep the site like it was and keep going because the reputation built is probably ruined already.

I do  like this thread. Rob, thanks for taking care of us.

Im late to the party but I do agree on the point system and the shorter reviews as well. Sometimes I was writing my experience on a product that was reviewed 30 other times, because after all everyones experience is different, but I ended up saying the same things as the other 30 reviewers. Not  a problem, just a little nusiance to restate the ingredient profile everytime.
That's why the QUICK SUMMARY section was created and put at the top so that thing of shorter reviews, etc, sounds lame and mundane. What can WE offer in this new SR website RoarRob pretends to build that other websites don't offer? Exactly, nothing extra or special, now he wants us to write reviews similar to other sites because they are more direct, etc.

So long reviews are bad, but people who cant write should be encouraged to write short reviews so they feel included? But then at the same time we cant have unverified reviews because they're bad too? I'm seeing a lot of confusion right here. In my opinion a crap review is a crap review, I keep scrolling past anything that doesnt have the detail that you would expect from an experienced TROOPer and/or expert reviewer, because man, if you dont have the effort or energy to write a good review then how good was the product in the first place? And if you dont have the time/effort or ability to write a good review, then i'm not that interested in reading some half-baked garbage. I think the reviews themselves should be the most informative part of the site. When you figure out how to work google then you should be able to chuck in a particular supplement, or a supplement category, SR comes up, you click on a review and it's an in depth explanation on the product that you would expect from someone who knows what they're talking about, instead of some yahoo going lololol10111oneone this sheet gave me epic gainz bro omfg I think I was Ronnie himself buy this. The other thing is that having 20 reviews on the one product is nice, but no one is going to read all 20 of them. They might read 3-4 if you're lucky to get a good idea of how the product performs. It's making these top 3-4 reviews the most detailed, informative ones that's the goal in my opinion, otherwise we may as well just be any other supplement review site and if you're planning on going down that route you'd already know there's a million of them out there so good luck with that.

Getting brands on board is all about giving them a reason to spend money with you, which generally translate to them seeing a return IE people buying their product because they went to SR. I feel like the 'best deals' section of the site can use a lot more work to streamline the process. I also think involving some of the supplement supply websites (probably no bb.com obviously, but other ones like A1, lockout, nutra, etc etc) would be something to look at too. They dont have a large forum section on their sites with reviews for their products, so by having a direct link from a reviewed supplement to their site where you can see the product is available, the price, any deals on it etc makes the buy choice simple for someone once they've read the review. You could offer this directly to supplement companies too that would have a window/re-direct to their site for direct purchase. At the moment when I read a review on SR I open up another window and go searching for the supplement online, if I could just click through SR and get to the appropriate website and make the purchase that would streamline the process, and of course eliminate the chance I google the supplement and land on another review website that's not SR.

From what i've seen in your comments, you really dont know how to make this work right at the moment. You're asking a lot of questions, and asking people for suggestions, but there's not much 'we're going to do this' about your responses, which says to me you either dont have a solution, or you're working through it but hitting a lot of roadblocks along the way which isnt giving you the confidence to come out and say this is how it's gonna be etc. That's OK, but time is of the essence and I reckon every day extra that it takes there's another bunch of people who write of SR, and those people are hard to get back on board.
Excellent written.


RoarRob
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« Reply #49: December 10, 2018, 12:18:19 PM »
MarsheS,

We've got two long threads here. So far all we've seen are people ranting and guessing. Tommy doesn't know what to do either.

We know the Google has taken a serious disliking to all supplement review sites.

Please, give me the fail safe plan that is going to get us out of this massive hole that we're in.


bctuthill
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« Reply #50: December 10, 2018, 01:44:37 PM »
Was the website broken before?  I've been swamped at work and am catching up on this forum.  I'm usually online daily but haven't really contributed here in at least a month, I'd say.

I can only speak from my experience.  When I started, I was drawn in by the prospect of free supplements.  This was only after I'd been a user of the site.  If changes are being made, there needs to be a hook somewhere to get people participating.  There are flaws with free things-- people will take advantage.  We had high standards that should have prevented this from happening and it didn't.  Because of this, I'd assume it's unavoidable.  So then the options become a bounty program or a subsidized purchase strategy.  If we subsidize the supplements we're asking people to pay, even if it's less.  I think that's going to lead to people feeling entitled not to write reviews.  The bounty program however maintains the opportunity to earn something for free, and still allows for the new brands to get themselves out there.  I know people are saying they wouldn't try a new product if they already have go-to's, but I think we all know what will suck and what won't by looking at the label at this point.  Most of the mystery is the taste at this point.

Maybe SR can track people who click links on the site to purchase supplements outside of it and aggregate prices similarly to what priceplow does?  I have no clue what's involved with that, but seems like a value-add if you can boast to a brand how many people arrived at their product through the site.

If we went straight bounty, 5-1 like I think McGilla suggested seems excessive.  I'd vote that it needs to be scaled similarly to how it had been setup before.  Supplements in more acute need of reviews and/or more expensive yield more points than cheap ones with lots of reviews already.


MarsheS
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« Reply #51: December 12, 2018, 07:49:36 AM »
MarsheS,

We've got two long threads here. So far all we've seen are people ranting and guessing. Tommy doesn't know what to do either.

We know the Google has taken a serious disliking to all supplement review sites.

Please, give me the fail safe plan that is going to get us out of this massive hole that we're in.
Some of us have given good ideas. The thing is all you and Tommy care about is Google traffic, probably because the $$$ is there so I don't blame you, however, when a door is closed, you have to open other doors. Why does Google have to be the only way to get people in here? We got Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, other social media, our logo on products, a forum that is massively underused. You pressed the "Panic" button way too early, probably because you're scared your investment will be lost but when you invest in a business, you shouldn't really expect to see $$$ at the beginning so your Panic button because of the Google change was not justified. Other websites are still posting their stuff, we killed all the site. See the difference? Imagine PricePlow saying "Hey sorry we're not going to post more deals until we figure out the Google thing".

IMO, your only challenge had to be creating a business model that doesn't depend on Google traffic so you could still earn $$. Which business model? I don't know but there must be one. All you needed was a webmaster that knows how to do its job, some guy in charge of the marketing, nothing else. If SR is really a community of members passioned about Supplements, you could have one of us be like a Global Moderator and have forum moderators to activate that forum (very important), for free or you could give them some incentive who knows.

The only problem this site had was the TROOP program because most reviews were coming from there. The rest of the things were running fine. You're asking us for ideas and stuff but we have 2 different perspectives. Our perspective is from the consumer, the person writing reviews, not a business owner perspective that you expect. That's why I told you that you're the one in charge of creating the business model, not us, we don't understand those things. However, if we all this time took several hours to write reviews (I took days) and it WORKED because respected companies like NutraBio, Ronnie Coleman, VMI Sports etc were coming to us, then you can't come in here and destroy what we did because of Google. Look at tobacco companies, their advertising is banned in several countries however, people still buy their products. They use other forms to get their people, apart from addiction obviously.

Maybe we're too late already so whatever.


RoarRob
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« Reply #52: December 12, 2018, 10:28:35 AM »
Some of us have given good ideas. The thing is all you and Tommy care about is Google traffic, probably because the $$$ is there so I don't blame you, however, when a door is closed, you have to open other doors. Why does Google have to be the only way to get people in here? We got Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, other social media, our logo on products, a forum that is massively underused. You pressed the "Panic" button way too early, probably because you're scared your investment will be lost but when you invest in a business, you shouldn't really expect to see $$$ at the beginning so your Panic button because of the Google change was not justified. Other websites are still posting their stuff, we killed all the site. See the difference? Imagine PricePlow saying "Hey sorry we're not going to post more deals until we figure out the Google thing".

The problem is that SR is set up for google traffic, without thousands of visitors a day from google there isn't enough revenue generated to pay for the running costs, at the moment it's not even enough to pay for one person. The business model is similar to the publishing websites. If the big news websites like Huffingtonpost, CNN, New York Times etc lost most of their rankings, they would be screwed as well, they can't just switch their main traffic source.

The natural reach on social has been greatly reduced, we'd have to pay for ad placements, that wouldn't be viable. Supplement information doesn't do that well on social anyway, it's too niche of a topic, people don't really share that type of content. Youtube is a whole different game in itself.

It's not viable to continue paying for resources to run a website that is dropping in traffic. It's only delaying the recovery.

Quote from: MarsheS
IMO, your only challenge had to be creating a business model that doesn't depend on Google traffic so you could still earn $$. Which business model? I don't know but there must be one. All you needed was a webmaster that knows how to do its job, some guy in charge of the marketing, nothing else. If SR is really a community of members passioned about Supplements, you could have one of us be like a Global Moderator and have forum moderators to activate that forum (very important), for free or you could give them some incentive who knows.

SR has relied on google and to get it going again we need that traffic from google. We are looking at ways to not be so heavily reliant on them in the future but that's years down the line. The community just isn't big enough, we need a lot more return visitors.

Quote from: MarsheS
The only problem this site had was the TROOP program because most reviews were coming from there. The rest of the things were running fine. You're asking us for ideas and stuff but we have 2 different perspectives. Our perspective is from the consumer, the person writing reviews, not a business owner perspective that you expect. That's why I told you that you're the one in charge of creating the business model, not us, we don't understand those things. However, if we all this time took several hours to write reviews (I took days) and it WORKED because respected companies like NutraBio, Ronnie Coleman, VMI Sports etc were coming to us, then you can't come in here and destroy what we did because of Google. Look at tobacco companies, their advertising is banned in several countries however, people still buy their products. They use other forms to get their people, apart from addiction obviously.

Maybe we're too late already so whatever.

There isn't any point in keeping the old content online if barely anyone is seeing it.

Those brands and new brands won't partner with us if we're not getting the traffic.


RoarRob
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« Reply #53: December 12, 2018, 10:33:40 AM »
There is another option here. Anyone is welcome to buy SR from us at the price we bought it for. Any takers?


bogusforlife
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« Reply #54: December 12, 2018, 11:36:57 AM »
Surely prospective revenue was a factor in what you bought it for so asking for the same when that prospect has dwindled drastically seems far fetched, doesn't it?

P.S. I tried to make it right on the two supplement reviews I had to cancel on months ago but nobody was manning the email inbox that I was directed to.


RoarRob
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« Reply #55: December 12, 2018, 12:27:16 PM »
It was just a joke.

We're not putting up any new reviews so you don't need to email them in.

We'll be putting up a new version of the site within the next couple of months.


bogusforlife
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« Reply #56: December 12, 2018, 12:55:38 PM »
Gotcha. I was actually trying to pay for the products since I never did get to finish them and review them. Maybe my .02 will offset the 75% loss of traffic? (A joke also)


bctuthill
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« Reply #57: December 12, 2018, 01:44:45 PM »
@MarsheS - A website, a company of any kind, really can't exist without Google.  That's the whole reason Google is under the level of scrutiny it is right now-- it's overwhelmingly powerful.  Of the entire Search Engine market share, Google searches represent 93%.  With its integration to other technologies it can track not only where you are and where you've been, but also pinpoint fairly accurately where you'll be next... and what you'll buy.  There's no going around it.

@RoarRob - Have you looked into mimicking the SEO strategies used by the rest of the industry and the brands represented on this site?

A lot has come out in these Google testimonies that could give us insight to promoting the brand.  The CEO has had to explain their algorithm in pretty thorough detail to explain the alleged bias of the site against conservatives.  Maybe reviewing those disclosures could provide a road map that can be followed.


davidian
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« Reply #58: December 12, 2018, 02:57:19 PM »
Seems like we're going round and round in circles here, and i'm not seeing any real progress at all. The 'customers' (us, the reviewers, people who click the links) are saying how much they love the site, and the admin is saying how nice that is, but no one is seeing it anymore so who cares? I can understand how the visitors to the site, some of them long term, are pretty frustrated at the moment. Marshes is right, asking us 'well what would you do to fix it' is a big red flag that you dont really have a plan to get the site viable (note: not the same as having good content, as you've said yourself who cares how good the reviews are, it's traffic we want). I'd love to see what the traffic figures from repeat users are in the past month vs. 6 months ago. SR used to be on my start-up page, now I might drop in 2-3 times a week max. I've stopped posting reviews, I have about 6 products lined up to review but what's the point? They'll probably get deleted anyway. Speaking of which, did you/can you take into account people sharing their reviews via fb/twitter etc when they post them? I know I do that for every single one of my reviews, i'm sure others do too. It may not be a lot of extra traffic generated, but it's pushing it onto a new platform and it's free.

I still stand by my original comments that if you havent figured out a solution yet then i'd probably just can the site as a whole. From the time I wrote that to now I havent seen anything, not a single comment, strategy or otherwise, that suggests SR has figured it out. Gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em.


RoarRob
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« Reply #59: December 12, 2018, 03:55:15 PM »
bctuthill,

For the most part you're right, the majority of websites do rely heavily on google. There are exceptions to that.

It's been 4 months, myprotein, livestrong etc haven't recovered, there's no point in looking at them. We have a strong SEO team here, we're spending everyday on this. I built my first website in 2003.

davidian,

This thread has gone off track, I feel like I'm repeating myself. It was supposed to be about the new features that you'd like to see. But people have been asking questions and throwing out ideas on how to recover the site, they deserve a reply.

We are working on a new version of SR. We're going to start with supplement brand and ecommerce store overview pages where people can leave reviews. That will be the first phase.

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