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Welcome headers - Improve community registration rates Details »
Welcome headers - Improve community registration rates
Mod Version: 4.2, by Ted S (Coder) Ted S is offline
Developer Last Online: Nov 2020 I like it Show Printable Version Email this Page

This modification is in the archives.
vB Version: 3.6.x Rating: (162 votes - 4.86 average) Installs: 2440
Released: 24 Jun 2006 Last Update: 20 Jun 2007 Downloads: 10469
Not Supported Uses Plugins Template Edits  

Attention vB 3.7 users: Please see the 3.7 version of this add-on.

The out of the box vBulletin style does not have a robust method of informing users about their current activity status or user level. As a result, guests entering on a page other than the homepage (which is most often the case) have no idea what a forum is about or that they may need to register. Additionally, there are no visible status indicators, making it confusing for unconfirmed, unapproved or new members to know what to do or where to begin.

To help solve these problems, the welcome headers plugin creates a 5-part set of conditionals to better introduce members to your community while pushing them to register, activate or post. The default templates are just that, default – I highly encourage you to tweak the language and functions to meet the needs of your actual community environment.

Modifications/ Instructions:
Template edits: 2
Plugins: 1 (adds 1 template and several settings)

This template hack should take under 5 minutes to implement and customize.

What’s new in 4.2
The 4.2 version of this addon functions in the same way as previous versions but with modifications to the backend code. The addon is now designed to independently review conditional statements to make it easier to add new messages. If you are upgrading from a previous version and have changed the template welcome_headers, this version will revert your changes. There is no new functionality in this upgrade and it is optional.

Install Instructions:
Full install instructions can be found in the attached file. This addon requires adding a plugin and modifying one template.

Customizing the content / messages
To customize which messages appear or what they say, go to vBulletin options, select the "Welcome Header System" group and configure the options as desired. Each phase can be modified by adding translation text.

Details on how it all works:
Step One: Turning lurkers into Members
For most forums, upwards of 50% of traffic comes through search engines or deep links to threads, profiles and categories. Out of the box, vBulletin only displays a welcome message on the forum-homepage, meaning someone who enters through any other page does not have the benefit of seeing an explanation of the site or welcome message. The guest welcome header is used to explain the purpose of your site, sell users on the benefits of joining the community and push them to proactively register.

Step Two: Making Users Confirm their Account
Many vBulletin sites require email confirmation prior to being able to post or access an account. However, activation emails are often misdirected to spam folders, ignored or simply deleted, leaving unconfirmed users with little access rights and no explanation as to what is wrong with their account. The unconfirmed welcome header is used to inform unconfirmed members of their account status and to direct them to automatically resend their activation email, or to contact the webmaster for support.

Step Three: Get non-posting users to post
Another chronic problem faced by many forums is insuring users post after registering. Many new visitors register in order to access certain features with the intent of posting, but never do so. The never posted welcome header is used to encourage users to post for their first time and should ideally be linked directly to an introductions or new member forum to help users "break the ice".

Step Four: Getting inactive users to become more active
Many members start out as lurkers, register, post once or twice and then go back to being lurkers. Often time these members are not actively thinking about participating in topics or are still shy about interacting. The inactivity welcome header reminds members to make a post after a predetermined amount of time as specified by the forum administrator.

Step Five: General Announcements
Unfortunately the standard announcements are often overlooked or never even seen by members who use the "new posts feature". As a result, urgent notices may be missed by users causing problems and high volumes of support requests. The global announcement welcome header creates a message shown to all members who do not fall into the other welcome header groups (guest, unconfirmed, never posted, inactive). Whether it be a scheduled outage/ upgrade, an important request or the need to display an advertisement in a prominent spot, global announcements allow an administrator to effectively and quickly display messages in a way that is certain to be read.

Optional: One-View Messages
Some forums find that users grow tired of seeing the messages thus there is an option to show the welcome messages only once per browser session as determined by using a cookie.

Optional: Custom Messages
Welcome Headers addresses 5 common needs, your forum probably has more. I highly encourage you to add messages based on profile fields, user states and other criteria that may impact your users.

The results:
At first glance this system may seem a bit superfluous, however, the numbers rarely lie, nor does the feedback. On ScubaBoard.Com, the site the system was originally tested on, posting rates increased by over 100%; new user registration rates by over 60%; user activity by 50% and the welcome/ intro & greets forum has exploded over 400%. If you browse through the pages of this thread you will find even more real life testimonials and experiences from the thousands of people using the system.

vbSEO Add-ons
Some forums have found that after adding welcome headers, the welcome message shows up in their search descriptions. To address this issue, user's at vbSEO have recommended turning the guest welcome header into an image -- this way there's no duplicate content for the bots to spider. To learn more click here. My recommendation is that you test this option if you are allowing bots to spider your front-end pages.

Limited Guest Viewing compatibility
The Welcome Headers System is designed to work with the Limited Guest Viewing without any conflict. To insure that welcome header messages do not show up at the same time as the limited guest viewing message, please be sure you are running welcome headers version 4.1.3 or greater and have enabled the suppression option.

Support
Please post any enhancement or technical questions you may have and I will do my best to respond in a timely manner. Please note: I can not guarantee an immediate response and am unable to assist with integrating this addon with other addons or with HTML related questions.

Updates
4.2.1 - Fixed bug with global message
4.2.0 - Changed template conditionals to simplify customizations
4.1.9 - Added ability to disable messages if using Limited Guest Viewing system
4.1.3 - Added support for Limited Guest Viewing system

Download Now

Only licensed members can download files, Click Here for more information.

Screenshots

Click image for larger version

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Size:	74.3 KB
ID:	49927   Click image for larger version

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Size:	72.5 KB
ID:	73357   Click image for larger version

Name:	welcome_headers_nopost.gif
Views:	4159
Size:	69.7 KB
ID:	73358  

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  #1261  
Old 17 Mar 2008, 11:20
globalinsites globalinsites is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Question

Is it possible to change the color of a word/link in the Guest Message? I tried it with [color=Option ]value[/color ] but it doesn't work.
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  #1262  
Old 17 Mar 2008, 16:53
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Originally Posted by globalinsites View Post
Is it possible to change the color of a word/link in the Guest Message? I tried it with [color=Option ]value[/color ] but it doesn't work.
You need to use regular HTML, not BBCode.
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  #1263  
Old 22 Mar 2008, 11:03
netzrate netzrate is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Real name: Michael
install and work nice!

Thank you!!
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  #1264  
Old 24 Mar 2008, 07:28
jwaggoner's Avatar
jwaggoner jwaggoner is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
I've just installed the mod on our 3.6.2 Vbulletin board test site but I don't see any welcome messages... I've installed the plugin and ensured it was switched on in the admincp and made the changes from step 1 and 2 in the default style (the only one installed).

How do I test this functionality? I have delete the cookie to ensure I was considered a unknown user from my PC...

I would love to use the mod so any help or hint is welcomed!!!

greetings,
John
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  #1265  
Old 24 Mar 2008, 15:23
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Originally Posted by jwaggoner View Post
I've just installed the mod on our 3.6.2 Vbulletin board test site but I don't see any welcome messages... I've installed the plugin and ensured it was switched on in the admincp and made the changes from step 1 and 2 in the default style (the only one installed).

How do I test this functionality? I have delete the cookie to ensure I was considered a unknown user from my PC...

I would love to use the mod so any help or hint is welcomed!!!

greetings,
John
Have you added the welcome headers variable to your template?

Are you viewing your board as a guest (and thus seeing the login box)?
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  #1266  
Old 24 Mar 2008, 21:31
Iron Guard Iron Guard is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
*installed*..thanks, just one quick question.

I edited the navbar template, however I still have dual welcome messages. The custom message and the standard vb message. Upon installing this mod I followed the directions and removed the code necessary at forumhome. Any reason I am still getting both messages.

I have two styles, default and dark, but only have the one style activated. Do I need to edit the forumhome template in the default style as well? thanks
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  #1267  
Old 24 Mar 2008, 21:59
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
You have not removed the forumhome code from the appropriate template... if using a custom template it's entirely possible that it exists elsewhere and may look slightly different. A search should help you find it.
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  #1268  
Old 24 Mar 2008, 22:21
jwaggoner's Avatar
jwaggoner jwaggoner is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Originally Posted by jwaggoner View Post
I've just installed the mod on our 3.6.2 Vbulletin board test site but I don't see any welcome messages... I've installed the plugin and ensured it was switched on in the admincp and made the changes from step 1 and 2 in the default style (the only one installed).

How do I test this functionality? I have delete the cookie to ensure I was considered a unknown user from my PC...

I would love to use the mod so any help or hint is welcomed!!!

greetings,
John
Thanks for your replies. I was finally able to figure it out. First plugin installed so I had to figure a few things out to get it working.
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  #1269  
Old 25 Mar 2008, 05:30
Iron Guard Iron Guard is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Originally Posted by Ted S View Post
You have not removed the forumhome code from the appropriate template... if using a custom template it's entirely possible that it exists elsewhere and may look slightly different. A search should help you find it.
oh oh....tough one... i am a tech tard and its all i can do to install the simple modifications....so the code that I did remove (as outlined in the instructions) may exist somewhere else? I have only one style enabled and it was from within that style (dark) that I wen to the forumhome template and removed the code.

When you say search I can't even begin to imagine where I would start to do that....whoa!
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  #1270  
Old 25 Mar 2008, 15:33
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
If it's still showing up then it's not removed... There's several search tools in the template system I'd suggest using to find it.
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  #1271  
Old 30 Mar 2008, 21:02
Iron Guard Iron Guard is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Hi Ted,

So...I used the search function and located the phrase <!-- guest welcome message --> in the template Forumhome >welcome headers and then removed it! Conducted a search and thus it could not be located....clicked save and ...no dice...both messages remain....so I deleted from my inactive default style, just in case...clicked save and again no dice...both messages continue to show up even after I search for the phrase and it doesn't show up....
What might you suppose is going on? Thanks
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  #1272  
Old 30 Mar 2008, 21:36
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Originally Posted by Iron Guard View Post
Hi Ted,

So...I used the search function and located the phrase <!-- guest welcome message --> in the template Forumhome >welcome headers and then removed it! Conducted a search and thus it could not be located....clicked save and ...no dice...both messages remain....so I deleted from my inactive default style, just in case...clicked save and again no dice...both messages continue to show up even after I search for the phrase and it doesn't show up....
What might you suppose is going on? Thanks
There's clearly still code somewhere... What's the URL to your forum?
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  #1273  
Old 01 Apr 2008, 06:27
Iron Guard Iron Guard is offline
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
http://www.ironguardfitness.com/forums/ i just edited the phrase in the short term
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  #1274  
Old 10 Apr 2008, 22:26
Kadence Kadence is offline
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Neat mod Only problem is that in vBulletin Options->Welcome Headers, the Enable Lurker Message 'click here' links to .../admincp/phrase.php?do=edit&e[global][welcome_lurker]. This gives a 'No Phrases Matched Your Query' error.

The actual phrase to edit seems to be 'welcome_guest'.
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  #1275  
Old 11 Apr 2008, 04:15
Ted S Ted S is offline
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Originally Posted by Kadence View Post
Neat mod Only problem is that in vBulletin Options->Welcome Headers, the Enable Lurker Message 'click here' links to .../admincp/phrase.php?do=edit&e[global][welcome_lurker]. This gives a 'No Phrases Matched Your Query' error.

The actual phrase to edit seems to be 'welcome_guest'.
It sounds like you changed something or downloaded this hack elsewhere... The world "lurker" does not appear in the source code at all.
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