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Dear IH: The issue that ain’t gonna get fixed here.

The countless number of posts on IH that go unnoticed.

For the past several days and weeks I’ve scrolled the “new posts” page on IH and have noticed that around 70-80% of posts have not been touched at all.

Sure, some may be spam, but that is already in the works of fixing because of spam reporters and mods here.

What can’t be fixed in a snap are all the other great posts by makers here.

They’re trying to accomplish the same things the rest of us are.

Simply by taking a look and leaving feedback or a comment on a couple posts that next time you visit Indiehackers could definitely help.

Remember when someone gave you that shot? They gave you that confidence?

Do the same for someone else.

  1. 16

    I carefully scan the headlines on new posts page but end up opening only a handful of threads. Why? Most of the ones I don't open look excessively promotional or clickbaiti-sh. Also, I stay away from headlines based on cliche titles (e.g. "Top 10 ways of...") or include overused, marketese, or fluffy words (e.g. mastermind, tactics, proven, and so on).

    1. 1

      Totally agree with what you’re saying here. Spam filtering is not at it’s best either.

      Thanks for sharing.

  2. 10

    I wonder if it would be useful to have some sort of flag to distinguish between two types of posts:

    1. Need help/advice/feedback
    2. Want to share/say/promote something

    I'd love to help people in category #1 which I think is probably the most valuable part of IH, but there is so much category #2 (a lot of it spam as people have noted) that it's often hard to find the category #1 questions.

    1. 1

      Reminds me of flair on Reddit. Would be very helpful to help scanning the list of posts

      1. 1

        That's a good analogy.

    2. 1

      That’s a pretty neat idea! Then you know what you’re getting into.

      (@csallen, @channingallen)

  3. 4

    This is my experience with posting on IH and HN, for the most part. Contrary to Paolo's answer, when I seek genuine advice or feedback I am ignored whereas my more marketed posts see the most engagement.

    I don't want posting to always be a game of "how do I optimize this title for clicks", but that is the requirement for getting relevant engagement.

    UPDATE:

    Take this post, for instance: https://www.indiehackers.com/post/seeking-feedback-on-our-home-page-primary-landing-page-3b162db7b8

    It received 3 upvotes, which I consider great! I've seen posts on the front page of IH with 2 upvotes (that is, 1 more than it started with). I believe the problem is that the post was engaged with too late to reach a critical mass of eyeballs necessary to generate the responses I was hoping for. I've never confirmed this, but I've always felt like the algorithms of BBS like IH, HN, Reddit calculate some kind of "velocity" for each post and determine it's "hotness" from there.

    3 votes is great! But 3 votes over a couple days results in a poor velocity. As a result, I did not receive any feedback (which is a shame because I highly value the opinion of my fellow Indie Hackers).

    1. 3

      Ok, so feedback on your linked post: It's a bad post.

      All you have is a link - if I didn't put any more effort into checking, I'd just assume that it's a spam post just trying to get people to the page. Especially since "Landing Page Feedback" has been a home for that kind of spam ("We just updated our page, what do you think" - well, archive.org shows that same design from 2 years ago...).

      My suggestion for engaging people on a post like that:

      Talk about why the page looks like it does, or
      Ask about specific feedback you're looking for, or
      Tell a little story about what led you into that direction for a page, or
      Give a little of your learnings about how the page ended up that way, or
      anything, really - help engage the reader, show you're commitment, lead them in a direction...
      Start the conversation...

      As it is, the post looks like spam, and even if it is not, you're asking for people to do work for you, when you haven't even seemed to put any work into the post.

      1. 2

        Oh definitely, I'm not saying that post is optimized for engagement (actually saying the opposite). Again, having to market a post to a community I've been a part of for years is counterintuitive. I think this is part of what separates a tight-knit community from any other public bulletin board. I was mostly responding to the OP and giving an example. I know the post itself is not optimized which was the point of me sharing that one specifically because it's pretty casual.

        It depends on what IH wants to become is all I'm getting at. I think of it like the difference between HN and a Slack channel or workspace. I don't have to put thought into optimizing a slack message to get engagement from peers, my being there is qualification enough. Contrast that with HN where every single post really is a marketing exercise. My $0.02.

  4. 4

    This, I think, is the way!

    I used to go to the new page (before invites) and report about 80% of the posts as the spam they were, day after day. I got frustrated that it didn't seem to make much of a difference.

    The invite change got rid of the really obvious and off-topic spam, but there's still a lot of naked promotion and listicles, and I still got frustrated.

    But, I realized that I'm wasting my time worrying about what the "new" page looks like, and I should be more worried about what the "popular" page looks like.

    Right now, you can get to the front page with handful of upvotes and a couple comments, so a lot of junk still ends up there.

    The way to combat that is Brayden's suggestion - to actively upvote and participate in a handful of posts on the "new" page that are good, but to understand that the new page is just a feeder, and doesn't have to be pure - it is the "popular" page that we need to curate.

    So, if you have a favorite contributor that you think is getting drowned out, follow them, use the "following" page to pick out their posts and upvote them, comment, contribute!

    Even if you feel the post isn't all that great, but is in the spirit of what you want IndieHackers to be, upvote it!

    For me, though, the biggest realization is that I shouldn't expect "new" to be anything other than like 20% good, 80% junk. Once I realized that, I feel a lot better.

    1. 1

      Awesome points! Never really thought of the new page in that sense.

      (@csallen and @channingallen maybe there is a section aside from popular and new where you pick moderators, high reputation indiehackers, or yourselves to suggest posts to the community. Maybe a “New and Noteworthy” section? And each user can submit one a day/couple days/week.)

  5. 3

    Agreed with the responses so far — I go through new pretty often (atleast during the times I’m active on IH).

    There is just too much spam/super low effort content.

    Does anyone like link posts without text? There needs to be something to start a discussion imo.

    What am I looking at here, what’s interesting?

    1. 2

      Exactly. There should be zero link posts. It just goes straight to their website or blog article. Instead, take the content from you blog article and post it here on IH.

      If someone really wants to share their website, it wouldn’t hurt them at all to write a short paragraph introducing it, pasting the link, and asking for feedback.

      That’d be great.

      1. 1

        As someone that has used link posts many times, I thought etiquette was the opposite just because link posts exist. I thought a self post containing the link would be perceived worse for some reason.

        1. 1

          Depends. If there is no good reason for having and sharing that link, that's the same as doing a link post.

  6. 3

    Agreed 100% - there's just too much crap posted here -- perhaps a way to see the beginning 50-80 words as a tooltip would be a cool addition... But all in all, a lot of posts go 100% unnoticed.

    I've never really liked the "Group" feature -- there's a ton of groups, and I've seen a lot of people posting the same thing to countless groups... So lets say I do a post, and then someone does another post in 5 groups, and a few more, and bam -- in 30 minutes my post is not even on the top "New" of the page...

    1: You should NOT be allowed to cross post
    2: If you make more than one post in 2 hours, only the first one should be visible in the "New" page
    3: Link posts should be somewhat differentiated from actual posts -- I'm really not keen how a lot of people just post links to their web site blog posts

    1. 2

      Totally agree on all of those points. Thanks for participating.

    2. 1

      I absolutely agree with you on the 3rd point i never click on those links to me its "Spammy" Why can't you just copy and paste the blog post (at least a couple pointers)

      1. 1

        Why can't you just copy and paste the blog post (at least a couple pointers)
        Exactly 😁

  7. 2

    I used to post on IH but no matter how much time I put into a post it seemed to never get any views/votes/comments. So I pretty much gave up. Sometimes I post to https://dev.to but that site has similar problems.

    Now I read the emails from IH and click on a few of the links (like this one) but besides that... my great hopes for being "involved" in the indiehackers.com community have pretty much dissolved into apathy. I feel my time is better spent coding on my projects and not bother to write up any articles because nobody will see them or comment.

    1. 1

      Sorry to hear that, Alec. If it helps, what got my posts more popular are ones that either:

      1. Asked a question to a large audience.
      2. Shared a milestone on one of my projects.
      3. Or addressed a problem or issue to the group of IH as a whole.

      Best of luck!

      1. 1

        Thanks Brayden.

        I just made a grumpy post to IH that talked about a recent milestone I accomplished and asked a couple questions. We'll see if it receives any comments...

        I didn't post it to a specific group - wasn't sure which group would be appropriate to post to or if posting to no group was better.

        1. 1

          No problem. The only other thing to do is keep trying. Try to stay consistent when posting.

          Trust me. I've had quite a few posts that have gotten 0 engagement but I didn't stop. I kept going and eventually found out what indiehackers really liked.

          (btw, I would suggest adding yours to the Youtubers group. It is usually better to attach a group to your post. )

          1. 1

            Thanks again for the input - greatly appreciated!
            I've just added YouTubers group for the post.

            1. 1

              Awesome. We're here to help!

  8. 2

    I have made posts I prayed would get the meagerest amount of love to make it out of the basement so I do try to look for new posts. Maybe IH should pin the most recent three added posts somewhere to drag some eyeballs over them by force as you go to the trending list.

    1. 1

      Yep that could work but then again theres the issue of spam, which could really turn off some users.

  9. 1

    Had the same experience recently, I was surprised to see how few interaction there is on the average post.

    I thought about researching trends and patterns in Indie Hacker stories through the interviews etc for my upcoming thesis, but I'm having mixed feelings about the data quality being skewed due to self-promotion/ boasted number/ survivorship-bias in the stories (if anyone is aware of meta-studies of IH micro-startups lmk!).

    Guess self-promotion has always been a lingering trend on IH, in a way that's the unavoidable nature of forums around software entrepreneurship since they are an excellent way to reach a tech-savyy audience to sell tools to.

    1. 1

      I agree with some of that but I would say that this is a great place to find stories about how the wheels came off, how apps failed to launch, and personal mistakes that more than balance out the survivorship-bias stories of someone's cool MRR.

      1. 1

        For sure, especially useful if you're not in an entrepreneurial environment yourself it definitely help broaden one's horizon on what tech entrepreneurship can look like!

    2. 1

      Yeah true true.

      Giving value and tips > you’re fancy little project you spent two seconds writing up a post for.

  10. 1

    @BraydenTW (& others in this thread): on twitter, have you come across the #buildinginpublic hashtag & the community Kevon has built on there? It's pretty cool, and might give you the back-n-forth you're looking for. It's been helpful to me on my journey thus far.

    1. 2

      How's this related to this post?

      1. 1

        "Simply by taking a look and leaving feedback or a comment on a couple posts that next time you visit Indiehackers could definitely help.

        Remember when someone gave you that shot? They gave you that confidence?"

        At this moment in time, I've found those places I mentioned to be a closer-knit community with a greater level of "community" / "support" than I've been experiencing here on IH recently. It can feel noisier/more salesy on here.

        update: I've just seen that you can 'report' profiles on here. A step in the right direction perhaps. I feel like community management/curation could help, too.

    2. 2

      True, that is a good spot to find neat milestones and stories. Most of the time the intentions are good too.

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