How to start a forum tutorial

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Sabre

Yellow Belt
Thought I'd make a thread about how to start up a forum. I've done so and sold it quite recently so I hopefully can answer a few questions regarding this. I will be making some more forum tutorial threads soon.

For me, the first step in creating a forum has to be buying the right domain name. As much as you can make a forum on a generic domain, targeted domains are by far the best way to go. Even if it means getting your keywords with a hyphen in between them, then it's worth it. If you want to do a forum about football for example, you want to pick up a domain name with at least the word 'football' in it and ideally, something that goes with that to do with forums such as 'forum', 'talk' or 'discussion'. I'd advise going for 'forum' as a general name, 'talk' or 'chat' for a more friendly forum and 'discussion' for a business type forum.
It takes a lot to market a domain without keywords, so the easy option is to get a good domain.

Secondly, choose the right forum software. I've always seen VBulletin as the best. It costs a bit more than the others but it's really easy to maintain and work on. I've never really had any problems with it and from what I can tell it's very secure, unlike some of the other forum softwares out there.

Perhaps most importantly is what you focus you forum on. There are lots of forums out there probably focusing on a similar subject to you, so you need to make your forum something new and fresh. People aren't going to come to your forum if it just looks like a carbon copy of an existing forum. Give the forum a nice skin and add in some features and you will find people are much more likely to stick around. Sites like vbulletin.org are great for modifications, the site has everything from basic coding alterations to new skins, all the way up to having complicated programs on your VBulletin forum and best of all, it is free. There are other sites out there for other forum softwares but they don't give anywhere near the range that VBulletin.org does.

Lastly, when you start off a new forum, it can be advisable to hire people to post for you. You can normally buy pretty cheap packages where you get a number of people to come on your forum to post for you, though they are normally a pretty poor quality. It doesn't matter that much though as you are really only just getting your site off the ground and people won't stick around if there is no discussion going on. It's also worth using webmaster sites like Webmaster Serve to hire posters, as webmasters are reliable, normally work for reasonable rates and give a high quality of posting.
 

RiverWire

Yellow Belt
Good post mate, i think i agree with everything said and cant think of much else in terms of basic's to add to that, as you have said the domain is 100% something you need to think about, Ive personally owned 10 forums now , 5 of which ive sold last year. The ones that i picked the domains carefully have been much easier in the long run .
 
E

erslageorge

I was ambiguous about to start forum. Now my vision is quite clear but yet have to seeking for precise and easy way to start . Can anyone tell me in formulated from ?
 

intuitive

Yellow Belt
For newbie webmaster, don't build a forum as your first project.
Better if you go building a blog. And once you have enough visitors on your blog, you can then build a forum for your visitors
 

johinsmith636

White Belt
Good post mate, i think i agree with everything said and cant think of much else in terms of basic's to add to that, as you have said the domain is 100% something you need to think about, Ive personally owned 10 forums now , 5 of which ive sold last year. The ones that i picked the domains carefully have been much easier in the long run .
good information .thanks a lot for this kindness.
 
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