I wouldn’t have responded to this (and almost didn't), but since you said you are really interested in suggestions, I decided to reply. First, let me say that I’ve really enjoyed the T3A website. I’ve had fun learning to make game modifications. I’ve also appreciated the effort that has gone into developing and maintaining this website. I assume the folks that maintain this site are all volunteers. Therefore, I’m not eager to be an armchair quarterback. It’s easy to say how things should be done when you haven’t been doing the work.
As I write this, I’m curious as to what kind of changes you have in mind and where you think the improvement opportunities are. For example, are you looking to change the web page layout or content or something else? Knowing that could influence the input you receive.
According to the “Users” list, there are 2,021 members. I tried to get a sense of general member activity but according to the list, most everyone is a regular user. I’m not sure how “regular user” is defined, but it seems like it is anyone that ever had a valid account, even if they haven’t accessed the site in years. I’m guessing you have access to more detailed data. For example, how many users are regularly accessing the site on a weekly or monthly basis? As you know, if there are not enough active members, then the site will fade away. I don’t know how close we are to that, but should steps be taken to boost membership or get infrequent visitors to become more frequent visitors? As you stated, things have been pretty quiet. It seems to have been that way for a while.
Allow me to ask a very basic question. What do folks look for on this site? That is, why do they come here? Is it for mods? Is there a demand for improvements to existing mods? Is there demand for new mods to play or do folks want to create their own mod? What are people looking to see in mods? Ditto for maps. How about tutorials? Is there an interest in a specific topic area or a few key areas? What are the opportunities to address this need? Is there a need for additional or more detailed tutorials? On the forums, is there an interest in detailed explanations with examples, or are people OK with the more typical general responses that are provided? Would a site polling questionnaire help gather needed data? What are the priorities? Would it help if the staff provide updates and requests for member input on more than a monthly basis if something newsworthy comes up?
I know I’ve asked lots of questions when you’re looking for answers. However, I really don’t know enough about the site’s opportunity areas to be more specific. I would expect that our site leaders would have a better understanding. I hope that some of these questions can be a starting point for further discussions that can provide more meaningful input.
One improvement suggestion I have for everyone is with regards to questions from newcomers (or even folks that have been around for a while). Yes, sometimes the question may seem silly or the person asking the question hasn’t done some basic research or may struggle with English grammar (having lived and traveled in other countries, I’m sympathetic to the challenge of communicating in another language). There’s no surer method to drive people away than to respond in a way that makes the questioner feel like an idiot or be embarrassed. If the person asking the question doesn’t respond to an answer, see if there is some additional information they need. If the person asks a follow-up question, every effort should be make to answer it, even if it’s a “I don’t know” because no response also indicates a lack of interest. This probably isn’t what you were looking for, but I believe it would help retain and grow our active membership.