develop a niche social network form sratch

Hello, I'm planning to start the development of a new niche social network and I've no idea where to start from, if leveraging a platform as SE or develop from scratch, if involving a freelance or a sw company. The social network will potentially in a long term could have +1M users so I want to be very careful about where to start from. Also which sw to use to make sure I chose the right technology etc. could somebody give me some basic guidance? thank a lot, Andrea

beast-usa

Comments

  • edited May 2017

    Hi Andrea,

    I would suggest to get a platform to start on and use it as your foundation. It takes a lot less time to start up this way.

    I used to work for phpfox and now work for SocialEngine so I have knowledge of each script. The founder of phpFox also works for SocialEngine now.

    I suggest to try the trial versions of each script you are considering. SocialEngine offers a full 30 day trial. Use that time to evaluate. If you decide to purchase, you'll already have the site started as you can use the trial site with your license.

    I moved one of my sites from phpFox to SocialEngine as I wasn't fond of the phpFox v4 product. I plan on moving my other site to SE as well, once I have time.

    Which features do you need? What features can you do without (this is an important question too)?

    Whatever you start with, don't over load the site with features. It will make it a difficult site for users to use and it will load down the site and make it slower for any script.

    For hosting, don't choose a shared plan for any sort of social network as they are dynamic with lots of moving parts. The host I use, now named Cazaratech.com , offers VPS for about $5 per month. They host for any script.

    I hope this has been helpful.

    NIAbeast-usaKirkus
  • What I see some clients do is using the SE script to start with and then after they have a bigger site and can afford it, they develop their own with their own development team. It's a considerable investment to develop a script.

    NIA
  • thank you for your advice. This social network will eventually turn to be a collaborative B2B environment that will have to incorporate the most typical social networks features. I can't think about features that will not be included. I will definitely need Profiles, Interactive news/content feed to steer interactions, content delivery network to avoid duplicates, In-app messaging and content sharing functionality, different ways to establish connections, various search and contact integration options, photo and video sharing, Some cool twists like location-based contacts, anonymous messaging, unique added in-app content or photo filters. I will also need to develop
    or incorporate specific app to manage recipes (just to to give you an example check the app www.allrecipes.com) and on line magazine (probably existing third party existing app/sw).

    Since I've no experience in sw development I guess I will need to find a Senior UI/UX Designer as well as a PHP a Front-end/Back-end developers.

    few questions if you don't mind:

    1. is SE 100% customizable with no limits?
    2. since I'm not planning to host, I guess there are several companies out there like the one that
      you suggested that can do that correct? so I can protect my project that is hosted by a third
      part?
    3. I live in Chicago; for the sw development would you recommend to look for the required
      profiles through SE dev. team, through freelance or what would be the best way to start?
    4. in your experience, what would be the average cost I should take into consideration to go live
      with a first release of a SE (phase 1 will not include all the features). just a rough estimation.

    Sorry for the many questions but I got the impression that you can give me very good advice :)
    thanks,
    Andrea

  • @NIA said:

    few questions if you don't mind:

    1. is SE 100% customizable with no limits?
    2. since I'm not planning to host, I guess there are several companies out there like the one that
      you suggested that can do that correct? so I can protect my project that is hosted by a third
      part?
    3. I live in Chicago; for the sw development would you recommend to look for the required
      profiles through SE dev. team, through freelance or what would be the best way to start?
    4. in your experience, what would be the average cost I should take into consideration to go live
      with a first release of a SE (phase 1 will not include all the features). just a rough estimation.
    1. Nothing is 100% unlimited as everything has a limit. PHP, Zend, browsers, etc. It is as customizable as competitors and more so in some cases but I can't say 100% without limits.

    2. Yes there are several and I've tried several. My sites were down all the time until I switched to Cazaratech. The only time I've had offline has been maintenance and it's not a normal occurrence. I did just have down time last week due to maintenance. However, it's still be much better than others I've used.

    3. I only use http://templatemechanic.com (and he does do SE development). However, there are other experts in the SE marketplace. Check reviews of those too. It's hard for me to say which of them is better since I've not used them myself. I have heard some good and some bad experiences from upworks and other places. Again, I guess it would be down to checking reviews of each one.

    4. I'm not sure since I don't know the pricing. I know some that spend less than $1000 before launch and others that pay $15,000 - 20,000 or more. A custom made script from scratch could be $100,000 - 200,000 or more, depending on what you need.

    I hope that was helpful.

  • it does thanks. so giving the large investment in case you start from scratch ($100,000-200,000 or more) I assume a sw like SE is definitely the way to go correct?

  • I would say so. Many do it that way and once they have the site big and earning, they then hire a team to make a custom script. I can't say for sure that's the cost of one, it could be more or less.

    NIA
  • Hi NIA :)
    Data has some good advise I started on PHPFOX and had no idea what I needed and wasted tons of money. :( Then I took most of the stuff I started with down and little by little started over. lol

    1.) I would go SE since I have used both I find SE is much faster and much easier to work with. But as Data said anything you use will have limits.

    2.) FOR SURE get good hosting yep I started on shared thinking well when the site is larger I will go to a VPS. Well the site only needs about 10 members to need a VPS! LOL And I tried a few different places and that is so much work moving the site then moving it again! I also use Cazaratech.com now "Cloud Managed" I love them! I think my site has been down once in over two years because of hosting problems. The rest of the down time I have caused. Great tech support when I mess something up! LOL

    3.) App's (Addon's) good ones are great! Buggy ones will drive you crazy. When I made the move http://templatemechanic.com didn't really have any for SE. But I did use them with PHPFOX and I was always happy!

    4.) Cost well I launched for about $2,000 and doubled that in mistakes in the first couple months. :( With the wrong hosting, to many apps (addon's), addon's I didn't need, buying addon's from the wrong people, going in five different directions. ScriptTechs, Data and the people here have been a life saver many times!

    The best thing about SE or PHPFOX you have Data and the users on ScriptTechs all are very good people. And as far as I have seen all are willing to help. So as long as you stay calm and ask the questions you always have help.

    data66Kirkus
  • thanks to both of you! I'm like a little kid here new all this world so I do need to learn a lot :). so http://templatemechanic.com sounds like the way to go. Can they develop the socialengine site for you or they only provide support and templates? Since I've a full time job and not too much free time to learn and works myself on that I'll need to rely on somebody else that can look into my project and trun into a product. what is your advise?

    data66beast-usa
  • We can do that via Bryzar (support link is in the top of the site) as we are starting managed services. Cazaratech can get you up and running. TemplateMechanic can help with the themes and any custom you need.

    beast-usa
  • ok so what kind of services does Bryzar provide?

  • We are transitioning from support to managed sites. We don't have our site set up yet (right now it just shows the support plans). Since we've not launched the services, it's hard to post here everything but it will be the back end maintenance, plugin recommendations, etc.

    beast-usaJohnJrKirkus
  • thank you for the clarification.

  • NIA I have used Bryzar :) very helpful and VERY FAST!

    data66JohnJr
  • the point is that I need to develop a social network on PHP and I cannot just rely on an help desk support. I'm actually looking for somebody in Chicago that can support us in this first critical pilot phase. any suggestion? :) thanks, Andrea

  • I'm in Georgia so I'm not in your area and you'll have a challenging time finding someone that specific but good luck.

  • to my knowledge and am no expert but i think the primary phase of online business should be started with minimal investment and test how people react to the idea what we have implemented and later when sufficient user base have reached and people start liking your idea only then u should concentrate on hiring a developer and tweaking the script or make your own script. right now i feel it is not wise to waste huge chunk of money on a product based on a idea which u are not even sure whether people are going to like it or not....

    its just my opinion and am not discouraging you or your Idea...

    data66beast-usaKirkus
  • @vizruta said:
    to my knowledge and am no expert but i think the primary phase of online business should be started with minimal investment and test how people react to the idea what we have implemented and later when sufficient user base have reached and people start liking your idea only then u should concentrate on hiring a developer and tweaking the script or make your own script. right now i feel it is not wise to waste huge chunk of money on a product based on a idea which u are not even sure whether people are going to like it or not....

    its just my opinion and am not discouraging you or your Idea...

    Yes. The ones that I know that are making in the hundreds of thousands of dollars per year started with a script foundation and went on to have a dev team to make their own custom script later but using the main script as a base. Generally, it takes a few years to get to that point.

    vizrutabeast-usa
  • I agree with vizruta & data you should keep your costs low until you know what you need.

    Unless you already have a customer base and you know what your customers want & need?

    I have a few websites and only one intended for making money. LOL And it has a small membership 98% paying customers and I only add what they want or ask for if I can.

    data66JohnJrvizruta
  • please i am trying to reach templatemechanic but there site seen not to be opening, please i need someone can give this guys contact...

  • please i need your advise on socialengineaddons , has any body work with socialengineaddons ? and how is there work delivery , i need opinion on this cos i have some inquiry i am making with them . thanks

  • Templatemechanic can be reached at cazaratech hosting if his site isn't working for you

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