Facebook is the popular social networking site online today and it wins Friendster hands down anytime. Friendster’s popularity took such a hit that it has resorted to copying one major component of Facebook – the applications idea.
There are tons of applications on Facebook. Useful applications like Event Management, or the Wall application, which allows you to post a comment on another user’s facebook profile. Facebook is also host to many games like BattleStations or Warbook, two of the more famous games so far. There are even games like FluffFriends, where you adopt a pet and you feed it things so they can race faster, and you compete with your friends.
Applications face stiff competition from other applications. They have to fight each other for traffic, so that they can earn more money through the ads served on their pages. However, there is one type of application I think is the worst, and only fools will use them to generate revenue.
The worst kind of application on Facebook is quizes. There are so many quizes applications on Facebook, and you have to add all of them separately to do them, not that they are accurate anyway. They clutter up your facebook profile, and you either relegate it to the Extended Profile section (where it is hidden), or you delete them after you have done. Of the quizes, the worst kinds are those that force you to invite your friends before you can get your results. Those are trashed by me immediately because it would involve spamming my friends and I have no idea whether there would really be a quiz there or not.
Let’s see why they are fools to think they can generate revenue on Facebook using quizes:
Firstly, most of the time, quizes are only accessed once in the user’s life, and nobody will go to the quiz page anymore if the questions do not change. If nobody is accessing, it would mean no one is looking at the ads, and also, the number of unique visitors drops. In a graphical sense, it is like an equation involving an exponential to a variable of -t, where t is time. Visitors tend to 0 after some time, and it is not long enough to get advertisers interested.
Secondly, they pissed the hell out of the users. It is extremely irritating to begin a quiz needing to invite many people at the start. It is worst, when you invite the many people and you don’t see the supposed results (the quiz, in this instance).
Lastly, quizes are boring. They don’t attract as many people as games do, because after you do a certain number of quizes, you get sick of doing quizes, and you know that the standard of quizes on Facebook is lousy, done up by some weird geek with a computer, and not really planned well.
I went to watch the “webcast” of the Singapore PHP User group, on a topic about suitable apps design for social network. I think it is a great clip to see if you are interested in programming an application for facebook. Before you start, however, promise me to do up useful applications, not quizzes. You want people coming back, not vowing never to come back.
For the Singapore PHP User group video, click here.