i am running a dating website for 3 months now, have about 5000 unique visitors and 115k page views. My website was featured in a nationwide newspaper, really big though, and it is responsible for the most of the visitors (and signups) to my site.
Currently i have about 800 members, roughly said 20 should be my friends, from which 200 or maybe 300 are "active" and "returning" members.
The problem is following:
Neither the power of the share/like button, nor the tweet button have showed some effect on the website's population. Although the user page's where "liked" on facebook, but the people who viewed the page, somehow ended up not signing up. Sad.
I want that people invite their friends, using the same technique like facebook or other networking sites, by entering their passwords, so that their contact list of their email providers can be retrieved and they can chose from the recipients and send out the initial invite letter, for this website.
I have seen an approach by a website, that "locks" cities before a certain amount of users are registered for that city. What do you think of this approach?
Should i, for example, force users to send out invites, before they can continue?
Should i force particular users, handpicked for example, to send out invites?
I am kinda tired and really want to roll the dice, but as a last resort, want to ask it here before i pick any idea from above.
Some facts about the website:
- It's a free service
- It's NOT a one night stand type dating website
- In my opinion, the design looks good.
- You can register with 1 simple click using facebook connect
- It also pulls all your pictures from your facebook profile (which you can immediately edit after they are pulled)
- You can fetch your email contacts, which you can again, select from which you want to exclude from the invites
04.06.2011 - UPDATE:
My experience so far. I don't know if it's the missing returning users or the few ones that return, or if it's me, who markets the site not as optimal as i should maybe.
I did not introduce the forced updates, but I'm about to. The unique hits dropped from XXXX to a value of xx (please notice the lowercase). I will introduce this forced invite system and then gather my thoughts here. Thank you