Network effect matters (Jens Hofmann, SBGDD)

What matters in these times is not solely size, also speed. What really counts is the network effect, which let small webpages grow and outperform their much bigger counterparts, sometimes in a blink.

The tipping point for the SWFM-QF webpage was in May 2013. The number of unique visitors, which visited only ones per month the webpage, quadrupled and the number of visits tripled. At the end of the year, a steady inflow of 500 unique visitors and 1500 visitors landed on SWFM-QF. In the end of October 2014, the project webpage increased their unique visitors in average by 50% and their number of page visits by 60%. The absolute numbers are not much, but the growth rate is remarkable for a non-commercial, specialized webpage.

It is interesting to know, that most of the webpage visitors in 2013 and 2014 came from Greece, Germany and Poland. This shows that the size of a country matters as well as the need for establishing a network in the field of the waste management especially in countries like Greece.

When it comes to the most downloaded content, than in 2013 the survey questionnaire, presentation from meetings and the comparison report were in the focus. In 2014, the survey questionnaire and presentations were accessed the most.

The usage of the SWFM-QF webpage shows, that a steady input of information helps to increase the number of unique visitors as well as the documentation of offline dissemination activities and interactions with the target groups (i.e. surveys).

The challenge for the future is to keep the pace of user growth by adding continuously new valuable information to the webpage in order to establish and sustain a dialogue with the target groups. One option is to set up an expert forum with the help of a national waste management association.