Almost every intranet platform contains some kind of analytics to track the users’ activity in different ways. Of course, every community manager expects to see great numbers in their community analytics. However, it is very common (it truly is) that the numbers are low. When you face such an issue don’t hurry to conclude the success of your community. The main metrics might not work for you. That doesn’t mean you have failed your community or can’t apply for an award. So how not get into community manager’s depression seeing low numbers? Let’s take a look at the main metrics managers usually work with.

Of all the groups created, only about 20% are usually active, and this is normal

Groups are created for very different purposes. Only some of them are aimed at prolonged existence.

Conventionally, groups can be divided into several types:

  • Administrative groups (departments’ groups, organizational structure, documentation, etc.)
  • Beginners adaptation group (usually, this group is a part of the HR groups complex)
  • Newsgroups (corporate news, HR news, worldwide news, any group that posts news regularly)
  • Working groups (project groups, team groups within the company, etc.)
  • Technical groups (we usually do not take them into account in general statistics, because they are created for the intranet management team. These are all kinds of test groups, groups for honing design, as well as groups for community project management)
  • Event groups (various groups that are created for a certain one-time event such as a summit of leaders, the launch of a new product, etc.)
  • Interest groups (various hobbies, sports activities, social responsibility, etc.)

The most real activity of the digital workplace is demonstrated by newsgroups, working groups, and interest groups. They will show you that your community is alive. Of course, all communities are different, and we are not saying that this scheme is a panacea or a true picture of things in every community. However, such a picture is usually relevant to typical communities. 

From the perspective of all the groups that exist on your intranet, newsgroups, workgroups, and interest groups, that is, active groups, make up about 20% of the total number of all groups in your digital workplace. That’s why you shouldn’t panic because of the low popularity of 80% of groups on your intranet. This is normal because groups are created for needs, and the needs of an active company are constantly changing and evolving, and with them your digital workplace.

Important! Such numbers are relevant primarily for intranets that have existed for 1 year or more. The new communities have a slightly different pattern of activity.

Among all users, usually, there are only about 60% of people log in to the community regularly

Moreover, there are only about 30% of truly active users, that is, the users that view, like, comment, or create content. Of course, many companies managed to develop super active communities with 75-80% of users that use the community on the daily basis. However, usually, they are small companies with about 500 to 3000 users on their intranets.

What you need to know about the semantic load of the concept of “active users” is that it’s a flexible term with many possible actions that may be considered as the activity of a user. We used to consider active users to be the users who view, like, share, comment or create any content. However, many platforms in their analytics consider active users to be the users who log in to the community a least once a week. It means that everyone who has logged in for the last 7 days will be named an active user. Of course, this metric is very important too, and these people still can see the main news on the homepage, but we all know that our goal is to have active users participate in the everyday life of our community as the actors not just spectators.

In this case, we can determine the type of information we need for all the users to see and put this information on the homepage. It will not be a very attractive solution in terms of numbers, but it will have a qualitative rather than a quantitative benefit.

In any case, you need to have a group of content leaders that will support your community with all types of content to keep it alive. These people will generate the vast majority of popular content even making up 1 percent of all community users. Sounds sad but it is true and that is OK. These people will generate interesting content and encourage other users to make their content. The more content leaders you have outside the group of community managers, the better. Why? Because content leaders are at the top of the active users’ list. Everyone will see their profiles and content items. If the users see different (let’s say random) people in this list, they will believe that your community is alive and contain relevant and authentic information. If the information is relevant and authentic, this community is worth spending your lunchtime in.

Points leaders are mainly people from the community managers’ group and content leaders

Among the top 10 point leaders, you may not even see more than 1 user that is not a member of the community manager’s group or a content leader. Which is totally fine. Community managers are the people who create a ton of content. Usually, it’s technical content such as documents for testing purposes, tables, drafts for the posts, documents with images and text to display on the group pages, etc. Most of this content remains unseen but they still get the points for all these content items.

Seeing your community managers at the top of the leaders’ list does not mean that all the other users remain silent, it just means that the community managers work very well. Of course, when analyzing community analytics, you will not take these people into account but it is OK seeing them at the top of your community leaders’ list.

Another group of people you’ll see are the content leaders. They are the heart of your community’s content. Of course, they are the people who probably even specifically work for your company to produce content. This is why they create content on a daily base, other users do not have such privilege to spend as much time generating content. However, it is important to make these people happy and motivated as any other employee in the company. Content leaders are the people who keep the community alive when it’s just born, when it lives its best times, and when it’s in stagnation.

How to keep your content leaders happy? The easiest way is to build up some gamification with an appreciation procedure for the most active users. This will keep content leaders and all the other users motivated, and be constantly ready to create new high-quality content.

Daily activity can be on only the 10th part of all the users

Daily activity is one of the fastest ways to understand the activity of the users, and what type of content users like the most. However, you may find your activity with only about 7-15% of unique users per day.

Of course, it seems to be a low number. Well, there are some causes for such numbers:

  • Weekend. Usually, on weekends people do not attend any sites that are related to work, so low activity is expected. Your community managers can use this time for generating any testing content they need, and by disabling email notifications they may work without making it publicly available or known.
  • Holidays. There is no major work activity for holidays in the digital workplace so people just sent some congrats to their colleagues, maybe check company news once a week, and that’s it. So don’t be upset with low numbers during holidays.
  • Most of your employees are field workers. Don’t expect them to check out the community daily if they don’t have constant access to a computer or even the Internet. In this case, you won’t have higher activity no matter what you do. This is OK. You expect your employees to work, not surf the Internet. You can reduce your costs on the intranet to spend less on a community that works mostly for the office workers. You can analyze the last login date, and if a lot of users do not log in at least every month, you can reduce the number of active licenses or temporarily disable inactive users. There are lots of ways to optimize your costs, and we can help you with it, just contact us.
  • Your intranet is dull. Well, sounds harsh but it might be true. So you are a happy manager to see it in your community analytics, believe us, this is your opportunity to make changes. Analyze some key dates with the highest activity, for example, when you post important company news or when your project teams update their project groups, etc. Any information will be useful. You get these key popular topics, you can develop them to work for your community for a longer time.

These are some causes of low activity but can be plenty of such. We can help you to analyze your intranet analytics, and improve users’ daily activity. To sum up, even seeing low numbers for daily activity is good because it shows you where you should go and what you can improve to make your intranet more interesting for the users.

Popular content may not be the content you see important

What is the most important content for your community in your opinion? Think of the content you especially hope will be popular. We know you have such 🙂 Usually, such types of content are top managers’ posts, company news, HR news, or some other kind of content that is designed for the whole company. Well, it is expected because it is that kind of information you expect everyone in your company would need to see. However, most communities will show you different leaders among the content.

There are some typically popular groups of content in digital workplaces:

  • Technical documents such as employment schedule in a private salesmen group. Such documents usually have a lot of changes, comments, likes, and bookmarks. This is great because it means that your employees use the intranet for its intended purpose. It means your intranet is truly alive.
  • Posts related to charity auctions where people bet on lots to do a good thing. These posts get a lot of comments as people use comments to bet. So this is a win-win situation of using the content functionality as a tool to gain your direct goal (sell something in a charity auction) and to make your content popular. Moreover, this is a situation where you make people use only the functionality of your intranet to interact with the people upon your project.
  • Mockup files in an internal project group. This is very similar to the technical documents. These files have a lot of versions and a lot of comments. It’s great because it means that people use the platform functionality and spend less time searching files in the email threads. Such activity is the purpose you want a good intranet, that is, to save money.
  • News about changes in the organizational structure. People are interested in new employees or some transfers within the company. Well, this type of content helps you to promote the internal employment program (if you have one, you can successfully conduct it on your intranet), and, as the result, save much money on hiring within the company.
  • Content where people can discuss non-related to the work stuff freely. This is what makes your employees feel comfortable and socially integrated. Anything goes. It can be a group about sport, music, cooking, foreign language training, etc. You can arrange marathons and football games, speaking classes, and book club meetings. You will have social media within your intranet. It will help keep your users in your community and spend less time on the outside social media. The more time they spend in your community, the more important content they will see. So you still have great chances to promote the needed content 🙂

We understand that you expect to see top managers’ posts at the top list of the popular content but, usually, this type of content is not the most popular one. It is OK, you just need to prepare your tops for this. They will understand that is it still important to post content regularly because it is the easiest and the fastest way to keep in touch with the employees. Video content would be good too. To make an important post more popular you can promote them by sharing to different groups, adding them to the news digest, or encouraging the top managers to interact more in the community to gain more subscribers, and therefore, more readers.

There are a lot of numbers that may look depressing but don’t get upset too fast. Everything works if you know what causes problems and how to make these problems a tool, not the obstacles. If you have any feeling that your community does not work well, please, feel free to contact us, and we will help you to use the full potential of your platform to make the users happy.

Natalia Scherbina

Author Natalia Scherbina

Project manager, Tech Lead, QA

More posts by Natalia Scherbina

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