Forums are one of the original online social communities, they’ve been a part of internet culture long before social media and web 2.0. Far from showing their age, discussion forums have evolved with the web and continue to be one of the most immersive, interactive and useful community platforms around today.
Some of the benefits of online communities are that they help to build customer trust, increase productivity and drive traffic to your website, so if you’re looking for advice on how to create a forum using Telligent Community, you will find this guide useful.
Telligent Community is an API-first, white labelled, fully-customizable community application that can be used to create complex, intricate, integrated forums.
The basic foundations – what will your forum be about?
As outlined in our guide on how to build a social intranet for Sitecore, the initial step in creating a forum is deciding its purpose and main function. Once you have an idea in mind, you can then begin to name your forum.
It’s worth, at this stage, really considering who you’ll want to attract to the forum, what you expect them to discuss and perhaps most importantly, how you’d like to harness the information gathered through user-generated content. It’s important to have these elements clearly defined initially, in order to successfully set up your forum with these aims in mind.
Once you’ve decided your forum’s purpose, you can then name it and add a description.
What type of forum threads will it include?
Forums contain threads, which are essentially conversations. One main hallmark of great forums that function successfully, is that they have unique threads for each topical conversation.
With Telligent Community, you’ll have the option to decide whether your forum is set up to accept discussion threads, question and answer threads or both. Wondering what the difference is? Discussion threads encourage community members and users to publish content for a number of reasons, even though they won’t necessarily always be searching for a definitive answer. In fact, they’re more likely to be looking for an open discussion in which other members can provide varying, subjective and experienced-based opinions.
Question and answer threads are another option. These threads differ from standard discussion threads, in the way that they can include suggested answers and verified answers. Verified answers will appear at the top of that particular thread, helping any users that land on the page from external searches. Find out more about the different types of forum threads.
Forum creation and management video guide
For more technical information on creating a forum, watch our course. Here you’ll find in-depth information on all aspects of forum setup and management.