The 2011 Brickset user survey results

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The survey has now ended. There were 836 responses, which really is excellent so I thank you all for doing so.

You can view the results and read the comments on the 2011 survey results page. This is the second year that the survey has been in its current form so it's possible to directly compare this year's results to last year's and see what's improved and what you don't think has.

So, here are the comparative scores for the quantitive questions, taking everyone's (under and over 18s) scores into account:

Question 2011 2010 Change
The home page 81.10% 85.90% -4.80%
Searching 79.20% 77.50% 1.70%
Quality and relevance of the news 78.90% 81.90% -3.00%
Accuracy and content of the database 92.70% 89% 3.70%
Quality of images 90% 83% 7.00%
Ease of use 89.10% 89.10% 0.00%
The site's design 78.40% 79.60% -1.20%
Speed of response 80.80% 79.30% 1.50%
Quality of set reviews 61.70% 56.50% 5.20%
The forum 52.60%

As you can see, five of the scores have improved and three have not. I think it's obvious why the 'home page' and 'news' scores have gone down: some of you don't like the eBay bar and the Amazon alerts. I guess the 'site design' score has gone down because, although it has not changed significantly since last year, you think it's looking a little dated now.

So, without even reading through all your comments -- of which there are some excellent ones -- there are clearly some points to address, and I plan to do so in the new year. However, there has to be a balance between your needs (uncluttered and ad-free) and mine (discreet value-added advertising to fund the site) so some further experimentation is needed to find that balance. I would however like to put it into some sort of perspective and remind you what happens when a LEGO site totally sells-out to advertising and becomes unpleasant to use. I don't think Brickset is anywhere near that state yet!

It's interesting that the 'the forum' question has such a low score. Although it appears to be very popular and the Vanilla Forums system is liked by those that have taken the time to get used to it, I guess it's so different to normal, old-fashioned phpBB-style forums used by other LEGO sites, that some of you have been put off by that. I have no plans to change it, so like it or lump it :-)

Over the next week I will read all the comments, pick out the themes and post something here when I've done so.

So, once again, thank you all for participating -- with your input the site can continue to meet your needs and improve.

41 comments on this article

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By in United Kingdom,

Well as a sum up of this site I think it is excellent. It has proved invaluable to me over the past year as I have grown back into Lego - if there is something to make turning 40 better its getting Lego as pressies : )

As a complete archive its brilliant and easy to use.

The quality is fantastic.

And the links for Amazon, Argos and E-Bay make lots of sense as this is where we are very likely to make our lego purchases - lego shop is too expensive strangely enough.

So am very glad this site is here. Keep up the great work and thank you.

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By in Italy,

I wish that there was a survey that you could take whenever you wanted...

But Well done for the images!

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By in New Zealand,

Keep up the great work, Huw.
There's always room for improvement - that's just life - but dont forget to give yourself credit for all you've done so far, its a great site.

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By in United States,

Well, all this Amazon & eBay story killed homepage design. I understand that you want to get the maximum from Amazon affiliation program, I do the same, but there should some more optimized way to do it. Every second news is about Amazon now, as on FBTB, EB, and other websites... Amazon pays very well and some people make a living from that, but you should keep in mind the Brickset spirit. I love this website, I am just sad that it goes as an Amazon subshop from the first look on the frontpage.

Comparing to my traffic and my revenues, it for sure generates you a few thousands dollars monthly, but you can still do it in a more friendly way for visitors.

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By in Canada,

Good to see some data. I want 1960's sets added.

There's a country flag for selecting a country preference!

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By in United States,

I agree, the website is looking a little old.

I too was shocked by the forum's score. I thought it would have been much higher.

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By in Netherlands,

Everytime I think the site can't get any better, it does. The new Amazon deals pages are excellent. Price comparison, euro/dollar conversion, historical data. I don't think I ever saved so much money in a few months.

And the most important category for a site like this is alo the best-scoring: Accuracy and content of the database.

Huw and all others who work on this site: Big kudos. I love it.

---
the only thing i'd like is to have not only a set database, but also a brick-by-brick database, but I do realise that is totally out of this world ;-)
I like bricklink a lot as well, but this site is just much more clean and readable. Bricklink needs a redesign I think. Maybe they can hire you Huw?

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By in United States,

Personally, I would hope for an MOC uploading database, as you would encompass all LEGO fans here, and eliminate MOCpages entirely... hey, it's one less stop. I understand that you're mainly geared at collectors here, but the two do overlap, and it's just more traffic.

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By in United States,

Not everyone USES the forum, or can use it. If you didn't put a score, does it bring down the average?

I am surprised about the Ease of Use and the homepage. Sure the Amazon & Ebay stuff might not appeal to everybody, but they are GREAT features!

I can't wait to hear the "action plan". :P

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By in United Kingdom,

@wb74160, thanks for your comments. You have to bear in mind that Brickset, FBTB, EB etc. all take time and money to run -- which someone has to pay and provide -- yet all the sites are free for everyone to use, so the only way they can continue to operate and be ehnanced is if they can get the funding some other way.

I have no sympathy, though, for anyone who still complains about the Amazon alerts. If you don't want them you can filter them out and if you're not logged in you only ever see those relevant to your country, and then only ever one at a time. I don't know what else can be done to balance displaying them for those that are interested -- a significant number of people if comments here and elsewhere are to believed -- and those that are not, but I am open to suggestions.

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By in United States,

I think the Amazon posts are very useful, and perhaps will just take a while for everyone to get used to seeing and learning how to set preferences. As far as the look of the site goes, it may be a bit "dated" but it is very clean and the navigation is easy and intuitive, unlike many flashier sites.

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By in United States,

It is odd that my country changes frequently from US to UK?

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By in United States,

@crzypainter, How is it "dated"? It looks very modern to me!

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By in United States,

@Huw I am aware of all those costs considerations, and I support you in trying to keep Brickset free. At the end, if I would have to pay some annual fee to use Brickset, I definitely would as I use it on a daily basis as a resource for myself and to document my own work on my blogs.
On the other side, I don't think Brickset needs a revamp. It is the best database and collection management tool around, and we all love it as it is.

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By in United States,

I think the reason the forums' results were so low is because all the kids who took the survey gave it a low score because they couldn't post on it. I think. Personally, I'm fine with how it is.

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By in Germany,

A change: You can now change your country! Look at the top-right corner!

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By in United Kingdom,

^ Nothing gets past you, does it :-)

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By in Germany,

@Huw: Nope. :)

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By in New Zealand,

"I don't know what else can be done to balance displaying them for those that are interested -- a significant number of people if comments here and elsewhere are to believed -- and those that are not, but I am open to suggestions."

How about having all the amazon alerts on a seperate tab, i.e. have a 2-tabbed panel on the homepage.

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By in United Kingdom,

Funnily enough that is exactly what I'm likely to do, and then also expand the alerts to include things like new instructions added at Lego.com, new sets added at Argos and so on.

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By in Canada,

Great site, great job, Thanks.

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By in United States,

^^Great idea. What would also be good, though it might hamper usability, would to be to have a "random set" image, if you will, to draw users into the site. Also, on the minifig browser, you could have anchor links to each minifig category/section, a la Wikipedia. Also, just as a side note, I greatly anticipate the update of the minifig browser to include the latest batch of Harry Potter figs when you find time.

Personally, I would also hope for an MOC uploading database, as you would encompass all LEGO fans here, and eliminate MOCpages entirely... hey, it's one less stop. I understand that you're mainly geared at collectors here, but the two do overlap, and it's just more traffic.

Thanks for a great site, Huw (and the rest of the staff!)

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By in United States,

^There is a random set under the Lego Shop logo on the right side of the page.

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By in United States,

Jonbuddy- Yeah, I was a bit confused for that one. Sure, I don't like the age rule, but that doesn't mean the actual forum is bad, and I've never been to the forum (It's on another website) So in the future Huw, could you add a "I don't know" kind of option for the survey? Thanks, keep up the good work at Brickset! :)
P.S. Now to look at comments and guess who wrote them :P For Alemas I'll just look for a lot of ':P's :P

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By in United States,

I do read the forum occasionally, but can't participate. :(

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By in Denmark,

I'm not sure, but I'm wondering if not the changes actually could be within the statistical error margin? Maybe with the exception of the 7% increase in "Image quality"? I guess however, if you have the same people voting each year (or a high percentage are the same), then the figures would be statistically certain. In any case, the ratings are at a constant very high. Thanks for a great site and keep up the good work :-)

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By in United States,

I see that you don't understand something about Brickipedia. The articles and pages of the site are under the control of the community but the design and ads are totally controlled by Wikia which recently has done its darndest to make money without consulting the users beforehand. The community Brickipedia actually plans to move, although apparently it's not working out....

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By in United States,

I think there should be a LEGO comics repository of both comics featured in Club Magazines and the old online ones like Orient Expedition and LEGO Island Xtreme Stunts. If such a thing were to be added, I might be able to provide scans of some comics...

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By in United States,

^Jay Kenobi ZX

That's a cool idea. I'd go for that.

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By in Canada,

^^Yes, good idea. I used to read those comics.

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By in Singapore,

Brickset is now the only site I use to keep track of my Lego and look for new sets to get.
Marvelous job.
While I agree that look and feel can improve, it is the utility of the site that keeps me hooked.
Thanks for the site!

Jon

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By in United Kingdom,

@BobaFett2, so the staff of Brickipedia get nothing at all for all those ads? I guess the hosting is free though, right?

If I can be of assistance in helping to move it, let me know...

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By in United States,

@Huw - indeed, Wikia is simply a free-hosting farm. The nice thing is that it's pretty much customizable, and it's an easy wiki platform to use for new users because of its rich-text editing features, but in the end Wikia is in complete control of the look and design - several wikis moved a year or two ago when Wikia changed the entire layout of all of the wikis so it looks like it does on Brickset, with content in the middle on a white background and an underlying background showing on the sides from a layout where the content took up the entire page.

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By in New Zealand,

@Anyone and Everyone on Brickset: Who cares about Wikia? Or Eurobricks? Or the other sites some Jokers here want Brickset to turn into? Sure, Improvements do need to be made from timetotime, and Huw has done an execellent job.

There is nothing wrong with change in itself, But I am sure Huw would agree that "Borrowing" ideas from other sites makes Brickset less and less unique, and its idea's less original, meaning that then, What is the point of people coming to use it if it is the same as other LEGO Sites?

Brickset.com is unique. Just look at our statistics on the Home Page, They are brilliant! Here they are:
-------------------------------------------------------------Site statistics-----------------------------------------------------------
* There are 8806 sets in the database.
* Brickset members have written 29188 set reviews.
* 33592 Brickset members use the My Sets facility and among them own 2,721,536 sets worth at least US$71,519,502 and containing 682,955,512 pieces.
* 2159 members have logged in in the last 24 hours.
* 221 people have joined Brickset in the last 7 days. Welcome!

(Copyright Brickset.com 2011)
--------------------------------------------------------End of Site Statistics--------------------------------------------------------

Having our new Amazon watch pages IS a step ahead, I can assure you.
Why? NO OTHER LEGO SITE HAS THIS! (Even if some don't like them, they are good).

Brickset members also get notified of discounts, Promo Codes and Events revolving around the world of LEGO.
Even the recent survey we had, The 2011 Brickset user survey results, Has had brilliant results! I mean, C'mon, is there any other LEGO Website that lets its members suggest improvements and then have the Website use them?

And do not foget that Brickset memberss can review sets, rate them and put them in to organized lists for different purposes.

Brickset Rocks! Long, may it live.


@Huw: By the way Huw, Have you secured the future of Brickset yet? Because each day I get worried that some day in the future, it will close :(

LEGOSLUG

P.S. This must be the longest comment on the whole site ever! Huw, Can I get A medal for that or something please? :D

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By in Italy,

I just decided to update my Negatives and add the fact that I get plush toys in the Ebay bar on the homepage. Take it easy, Huw, I nearly never (No, NEVER) shop on the Internet. But I would prefer Amazon.it. IF POSSIBLE (unfortunately no) Shop.Lego.com with regional settings for Italian would be best. But I never shop online, so go on and resolve more critical problems first.

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By in United States,

@Huw: The admins receive nothing for them. I'll contact you if we need help.

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By in Germany,

@LEGOSLUG: NOT the longest post, sorry. :P

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By in United States,

As others have said, wikia is pretty much slave labor. The users get free "land" (hosting), but the "masters" (wikia) profit off of it and do whatever they want with the "land" (such as ads)

I would like to say that if you create an account and log in, the only ads you should see are a couple small ones for other wikis at the side. You must be over 13 to create an account though.

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By in United Kingdom,

Thank you slug for your comments. "is there any other LEGO Website that lets its members suggest improvements and then have the Website use them" Probably not LEGO one but there others that do, I'm sure.

It's in everyone's interest that I listen to you and keep you happy. There's be no point having a site which I love but everyone else hates and never visits. I don't run it for my benefit, I run it for yours, the visitor.

@BerryBrick, that sucks then, doesn't it. If it was hosted on a ad-free Media Wiki platform like wikipedia it would totally rock but as it is I really don't like to visit it.

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By in New Zealand,

@Huw: I am NOT A SLUG! I am LEGOSLUG!

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