Why Do / Don't People Vote?

It has been 3+ month since our soft launch. We now have 250+ users registered, has given out $400+ in terms of prizes, and have around 400-500 unique visitors everyday.

What fascinates me is — why people vote? Or rather, why don't people vote?

Looking at the logs over the past week, we have no lack of registered users coming back to check out new bargains, but people rarely vote for them. So at the end when you browse through all the recently submitted bargains, you will see lots of items with only 1 vote — voted by their original poster.

So I am here to ask for suggestions — how can I get people to vote for good deals?

  • Maybe there are not really good deals? (Too much crap here?)
  • There is no incentive? (Why click on the vote button when I can just click through and shop?)
  • Too hard? (Where is the vote button?)

I am open to provide incentives, but then I do not want everyone votes on every deal.

Suggestion?

Comments

  •  

    Scotty, most of the deals are deals that most of them are always from the same people, company's etc and also there is no incentive to vote (like rewards, prizes etc.)

    •  

      most of the deals are deals that most of them are always from the same people, company's etc

      Looks like a chicken-egg question, but we also need to acknowledge the 80/20 issue as well. If you look at popular social bookmarking sites (Digg for example), majority of top stories are voted by the few top voters. As of "companies" — I would love to have more bargain oriented merchants/shops on board, but it does not mean the same old ones don't sell great cheap products.

      also there is no incentive to vote (like rewards, prizes etc.)

      I still need to figure out how to do this…

      If I go, "you'll get $5 for every 50 votes", or even "vote and get into draw for prize money", then you'll see all deals are voted to the full…

  •  

    I don't know the answer, but I can tell you that I'll vote for any deals that I actually use, or at least think is pretty good, and I'll vote for my own (now that I know I can!)
    Perhaps 400-500 visitors is still not enough? What's the percentage of lurkers compared to participants on average? Places like digg.com would have thousands per day…don't know, just guessing.
    There has definitely been more deals submitted since you started the comp, so incentive is certainly an issue, but if you gave incentive for voting, votes would no longer be genuine but rather just to get something for voting…
    Sorry, not much help, just my opinion :)

    •  

      True. Traffic is certainly an issue here. Digg? Much much more than thousands I would imagine, otherwise they wouldn't need 75 high powered servers whereas this site runs on a tiny VPS :)

  •  

    I think your award for the highest number of votes may actually be a turn off - we are all bargain hunters - hence why we are here, and maybe voting for someone else's bargain idea means less likelyhood of getting the prize for yourself.

    Also like Jaxx says - he votes for deals that he uses. Problem being that sometimes you dont get to vote for a few weeks if its a deal that lasts. Maybe its better to make the vote winner a monthly deal that gives time to prove the deal?

    Then also give an award for the each month best new deal, the best new post by a new member, that gives incentive to join and the "owners" award for best comment, or whatever you want to encourage - maybe if they keep missing out on the drawings or whatever….

    As you have a limited number of awards use have 1 per week and 4 at the end of the month for the special categories.

    Maybe others have ideas on the categories…

    Then again, maybe 5 tickets for a vote received and 2 for a posting. Awarding a point for voting will just encourage votes for anything. The real name of the game is to get bargains listed. If they are "trash" listings you can delete, and no points are awarded - just an idea for discussion

    Also the issue of timed promo's

    Would it be difficult to have an expiry date field. So that when this is passed, then the deal is deleted, archived or something, so that when searching for a deal, only those which are current or active is displayed. Like those petrol coupons, and Aldi offers

    •  

      Wow. Lots of info here. Thanks!! I think I will need a bit of time to think it through — just not something I want to do on a Saturday night :)

      •  

        Why? Got something more important to do?? lol !! :) :D

        For your sake I hope you do have other things especially on a Saturday night!!

        In the meantime you might get some other input from others to help out as well….

        I enjoy the site…. and the bargains …. cheeers

      •  

        Important things? Like delivering a baby at mid day on Sunday?

        My wife gave birth to a baby girl today (at Randwick Hospital for Women), and I too am exhausted. I don't think I can post anything tonight, and the rate of posting from me will be limited for the next few weeks.

        But bargain hunting will continue for sure :)

    •  

      I think your award for the highest number of votes may actually be a turn off… maybe voting for someone else’s bargain idea means less likelyhood of getting the prize for yourself.

      I sort of agree. A deal might be rubbish in one's eyes, but might be pearls in someone else's. I obviously do not appreciate any sales in fashion items, but that does not mean they are not good bargains! Popularity just by the number of votes can be biased, if the sample size is small.

      I also agree that the competition might discourage people from voting. I have actually seen a few obvious instance where a good bargain does not get vote from someone because of conflict of interest (his/her is currently the most popular of the week). It also encourages gaming the system by creating fake accounts to inflate the votes.

      I shall think about the competition a bit more. Maybe I will make some adjustment this week/next week.

      Then also give an award for the each month best new deal, the best new post by a new member, that gives incentive to join and the "owners" award for best comment, or whatever you want to encourage — maybe if they keep missing out on the drawings or whatever…

      I do want to keep the competition structure easier though. Sure if I am having more time running this thing but currently I am hoping the competitions can be more automated.

      Another problem with these "best" awards. If I am the judge, then it can be quite subjective. However if I let everyone be the judge via voting system, then it comes back to the same issue — why don't people vote. Maybe having a panel?

      Something else to think through.

      Then again, maybe 5 tickets for a vote received and 2 for a posting…

      I used to have a "userpoint" system here that give out different points depending on the actions, but something broke it. Looks like I need to code my own point system.

      Time oh time!!!

      Would it be difficult to have an expiry date field. So that when this is passed, then the deal is deleted, archived or something…

      Yes it has been suggested a few times. Originally I was going to do it after upgrading the site to the latest Drupal as it provides good infrastructure for me to add extra fields. However some major modules I am using for this site is still broken in Drupal 5. Looks like I need to hack up my own special fields again.

      Thanks for the suggestions. Some of the things are certainly coming, when I get around implementing them :)

  •  

    Congratulations to you and your wife.

    Not sure if you can classify your daughter as a bargain. But value for money she will be.

    All the best and enjoy.

    •  

      Thanks!

      I'll say that it is very difficult to put a monetary value on her :)

      It costs nothing for us to go into the hospital to have her. Howard government even gives us $4,000! However it is likely she will be spending away A LOT OF MONEY for the 21 years.

      Then again she is our daughter. Priceless.

  •  

    Congrats to you and your wife Scotty! :)

    Hospital bargain tip:
    Make sure you grab your Bounty bag before leaving hospital, contains lots of samples of baby products and other tidbits.

    •  

      Thanks! It is already packed :) No way I am going to buy anything from the rip off hospital affiliates, but don't mind the freebies :)

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