Forum

3 Easy Ways to Build a Forum Online

Forums are an excellent way to create an engaged community. If you want to make a forum site like Reddit or Tripadvisor, or you’re simply looking for adding a forum to your existing website, the good news is it isn’t that hard to do.

Here are easy ways to build a forum online:

phpBB

phpBB is a versatile forum platform that lets you create boards where registered users can post their messages, comments, and reviews. Once the forum is set up, you can create any number of internal message boards. If you’re using top-notch phpBB forum hosting, this tool can handle thousands of users.

In addition to basic functionality, phpBB lets you use extensions so you can customize your forum. There are hundreds of free extensions, enabling you to add just about any forum-related feature you might need.

Additionally, phpBB includes a theme system. You can use this system to change your forum’s look. Furthermore, your users will have a variety of options for personalizing their profiles and posts.

Pros:

  •     Offers powerful forum software with a variety of hierarchy options.
  •     Lets users personalize their posts and profiles
  •     Provides access to a variety of moderation options.
  •     Allows you to set up extensions and themes to customize your forum’s look and functionality.
  •     Software is responsive out of the box.

Cons:

  •     By current standards, a lot of the themes appear outdated.

MyBB

At this point, it should be clear that there is some basic functionality that you can expect to find among all the best forum software options. These include the ability to create message boards, allow user registration, and perform moderation.

Rather than go over the same points, we’re going to focus on what each platform does differently. MyBB, for instance, has a lot of the same features as phpBB. It has strong theme and plugin systems, an active community, and is simple to use. What’s different is that MyBB doesn’t provide the same amount of extensions. However, when it comes to style, MyBB has a leg up over phpBB. MyBB forums tend to be a lot more modern looking, and users should feel very comfortable using them.

Pros:

  •     Offers access to a simple to use open-source forum platform with all the essential features.
  •     Allows you to set up themes and plugins to customize your forum’s look and functionality.
  •     Comes with user reputation systems out of the box.
  •     It’s easy to use calendars and schedule events.

Cons:

  •     phpBB is more powerful.

WordPress

WordPress is a multi-purpose platform that offers a variety of forum plugins. Some of the best forums plugins include Asgaros Forum, bbPress, and wpForo Forum. All of these plugins provide all the basic forums features and several valuable extras. It seems counterproductive to use a multi-purpose platform for an online community; wordpress is an excellent option for providing a regular website and a forum side by side.

Pros:

  •     Gives users access to the most extensive collection of plugins and themes on the web.
  •     Very simple to use.
  •     Allows you to set up both a website and message boards.
  •     Provides a highly personalized experience due to the wide variety of forum plugins available.

Cons:

  •     WordPress wasn’t built specifically for forums, so it takes a little work to get it up and to run.

Conclusion

Creating an online forums is a lot like building any other type of website. For instance, you’ll need a reliable forums host and tools that offer functionality and customization options. Therefore, the forums building option you choose will depend mainly on what you want to do with your forum and your technical abilities.

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