About FreeBSD.org visitors

Derek Wood ddwood at highdensity.org
Thu Oct 10 23:25:40 UTC 2013

On Thu, Oct 03, 2013 at 11:14:48AM -0400, Eitan Adler wrote:
> Here is an overview of the people that visit FreeBSD.org:
> http://people.freebsd.org/~eadler/files/Report-10.01.pdf
> Some takeaways:
> - More than half (60%) the people that come to our website leave
> without going to another page (called 'bouncing').  However these
> users spend more time than any other user per page.
> - Non-bouncing users had an average of just over 4 pages per session
> but spent about an average of 0.86/s per page.  They spend most of
> their time on the last page.
> From these I think we can take away that most people come looking for
> something very specific.
> How can we fix this? Better search maybe?  Improved navigation bar?
> Its up to you to work on this.
> - New users spend a lot *less* time on the site than repeat visitors.
> Do we need better advocacy data?  Less text to confuse new users?  Is
> this trend specific to FreeBSD or is it true across the board?
> - Internet Explorer is 10% of our traffic.
> Many of ours users use Windows as there primary desktop platform.
> Probably more if we include not-IE on Windows.
> What other insights do you see?
> What other data might be helpful for us?
> -- 
> Eitan Adler
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The bounces I would be most concerned about are the ones from
index.html, because I wouldn't call anything there useful (e.g, no
direct links to a FreeBSD iso)

A few ideas:

- Offer prebuilt FreeBSD VMs

- A link to a screenshots page? This might be tacky but I believe that
  most potential users view FreeBSD as solely a console-based system,
  so showing what the user can do with the different desktop
  environments available in ports can help dispel this.

- Update the information blurb below "The FreeBSD Project":

    * Stress that chances are, whatever software you expect on a *nix
      system is available in ports

    * Ease of installation: bsdinstall is new; maybe link screenshots
      of it or the section in the handbook that covers installation
      with bsdinstall.

    * Link to PC-BSD: I'm not sure this is feasible, but the
      desktop-friendly features (graphical installer, WM included,
      default applications included) would definitely be more
      appealing to newcomers.

Although, I do agree: there isn't a whole lot of data, and if users
are moving on from the site after just the front page, there isn't a
whole lot we can do. Fedora [1] and Ubuntu [2] seem to be designed on
requiring at least a little bit of user curiousity: They contain
mostly the same things the freebsd.org site has, and then have a
well-designed "features" page that shows off the applications included
with the OS and also the general look and feel.

[1] http://fedoraproject.org/en/features/
[2] http://www.ubuntu.com/desktop

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