Best Practices for User Profiles

Yesterday, a client asked for some information regarding best practices around gathering information for user profiles. Through some of the research I've been doing, I've seen that there are no hard & fast rules when it comes to user profiles. However, I put together some general recommendations that are applicable to all types of communities:

1. Define your strategy: When creating your profile questions, you should keep in mind the type of information you are looking to gather from this data. If you have a set goal for the site, make sure that the data you are capturing helps to reach that goal
2. Limit # of Profile Questions/Mandatory Fields: While you want to capture relevant information from your community members, you do not want to overwhelm them during the sign-up process. With our platform, you have the ability to go back and add profile questions, so you can have users sign up for your community and then later have them expand their profiles.
3. Privacy Settings: Allow users to have the ability to limit the information that is shared from their profiles with other community members.
4. Personalization: Give users the opportunity to give their profiles a personal touch by allowing them to upload photos or avatars.
5. When adding profile questions, such as polls, it is advisable that the content be around timely events. Most people are more likely to answer a question or their thoughts on issues that are currently taking place. An example of this may be asking users how they feel about recent gas prices.

I'm interested to know if anyone has looked into this question and if so, what your thoughts are.

Comments | Add Comment

BY: Connie Bensen (17/07/2022 8:48:48 PM)
COMMENT: Those are some excellent ideas. I think that one needs to keep in mind that relationships are the focus. What information will help community members better relate to each other? For that particular niche what is of interest to them? Another thing that comes to mind is to remember that it's about the community (rather than the company, the brand or the product). The customer profile will provide information about what will engage them. For example stay at home mom's would enjoy being encouraged changing their avatars & profile info for holidays, but a male audience probably wouldn't care about that. Ultimately, knowing your customer's interests & lifestyle affinities will provide many clues.

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