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Idea to improve a first time visitor's journey

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Posted by
#1 Posted on:
Tue, 26/09/2017 - 10:50



Dear Forum Admin,


I've got an idea for your consideration - a natural first point of call specifically for new visitors to Gamcare.

When someone first visits Gamcare, usually at the end of their tether due to the effects of this insidious condition, whether for themselves or someone they know, the first thing they see is the main welcome banner. There are three clear options: Helpline, Netline, Forum. All very clear and intuitive.

However, when someone clicks on 'Forum' the journey starts to get complicated for the newbie. The top category, Welcome to the Forums, is fine, but there are then eight sub-categories talking about etiquette, rules etc. but nothing specifically to help 'kick start' their journey. A first time visitor will either have visited the forums because they didn't want to use the Helpline or Chatline at this point, or have used either and been directed to the Forums as potentially useful.

What I'm suggesting is there is no natural 'Welcome' point or specific message  for new visitors that describes what the Forum is all about and - perhaps even more useful to the newbie - suggesting immediate first possible steps they may wish to consider - "A survival guide", if you like (although I don't necessarily like that term). This is the ideal place to elucidate the ethos of what Gamcare is all about, in a personal message.

Here's my thinking, in practice.

1. A new visitor visits the Forums. I would suggest a new category, right at the top. "Welcome to the Gamgare Forums. If you're a first time visitor, Click here first!"

2. Therein, there would be a "Sticky" post along the lines of

"Welcome to the Gamcare Forums, a place to meet people, find information and share how you're feeling. It's all about supporting you, and each other, and we hope you find our forums useful and helpful..."

You may be visiting us for the first time and may be wondering where to start. 

  • You may find talking to one of our Gamcare advisors on the phone helpful; we're open from X to Y. [Click here for details.]
  • Alternatively, you might prefer using our Netline service, texting online. [Click here for more information.]
  • Sometimes, gambling can lead to feelings of despair; you can phone the Samaritans at any time on [phone number]

Dealing with gambling addiction often requires more than willpower alone; here are a few ideas that you may wish to consider in the first instance.

  • Sharing your problem with loved ones or friends; they may be more supportive than you think and it means you don't have to hide your problems anymore.
  • Handing financial control to someone you can trust can make a big difference
  • If you have debts that are spiralling out of control, consider phoning Stepchange on XXXX to talk things through.
  • Counselling might help you, Click here for more info.
  • Organisations such as Gaming Anonymous might suit you; click here for more details.
  • It's a good idea to self-exclude from the type of gambling that's causing you a problem.
    • For online gambling, blocking software might help you. Click here for more details.
    • For bookies, you can self-exclude yourself from premises in your aresa. Click here for more info.
    • For casinos, you can self-exclude from all casinos in the UK. Click here for more info

You are not alone! There is plenty of support for you and hope these first steps are helpful to you. You can ask for advice, or even start your own diary here on the Forums [link], and we have regular chatrooms where you can join others in a supportive, interactive atmosphere [link] -  you're welcome totake a look around!

And if you need any help with any part of your, or someone you know, gambling journey then we are only a phonecall away on XXXXX.

Kindest regards and our very best wishes.

Forum Admin"

You get my drift - a logical, friendly, helpful welcome message with useful links to help any visitors' first visit, giving a good first impression showing the spirit and heart of what Gamcare is all about.

Submitted for your consideration.

All the best, Mixer


Posted on:
Tue, 26/09/2017 - 14:32




Posted on:
Tue, 26/09/2017 - 15:38

Forum admin


Hi Mixer,

Thanks for a thoughtful post; you've obviously given this a lot of consideration and you've raised some valid points.  I think we'll have to discuss this within the team, but we'll take on board what you've said and certainly pass it up the chain of command. 

Thanks also for your ongoing contributions to the forum, we do appreciate them. 

Forum Admin

Posted on:
Wed, 27/09/2017 - 00:38



Mixer you really are a jolly decent chap. Once again I salute your admirable efforts to assist other travellers on their journey. You are helpful, compassionate, understanding and always ready to walk the extra mile.....stephen 

Posted on:
Wed, 27/09/2017 - 10:51



Think this would be a great idea, as when you first find yourself coming to this fourm it can be a bit daunting and something like this would really help

Posted on:
Wed, 27/09/2017 - 19:58

ALAN 135

Before 2009

Yep totally agree , it's a good point and would be a great idea for newbies :))

Posted on:
Sat, 30/09/2017 - 17:10



More brilliant and helpful ideas from Mixer.

Good work.

Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 07:12

Little miss lost


Mixer you are spot on! I found this forum and as you say, I was in a bit of a state after just throwing money away again and realising that I had a problem.
I was desperate to hear someone say to me - don't despair, you can do this, you can recover!
I wanted to join and write on the diary section but I couldn't work out how to start a diary. (I'm not brilliant with technology) I set up an account but didn't know how to post so I drifted away and went on to lose many more thousands. I occasionally came back (usually after big losses) because I liked the concept but It took a while before I realised how to start a diary of my own.
Even just a section that says open an account. To start your new diary click here and write your first entry.
It was very daunting when I was new. An easier format for newbies would definitely help.

Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 07:16

Little miss lost


Ps it was only through reading a forum members post where they were explaining how to open a diary that I was able to start one of my own.

Posted on:
Sun, 10/12/2017 - 17:29

Forum admin


Hello Little miss lost,

Thank you for this feedback.  I will pass it on to the forum team leader so that she is aware of your suggestions for improving the forum.

Take care,

Forum admin.