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Getting people signed up for the project and and buying/upgrading tests

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  • Getting people signed up for the project and and buying/upgrading tests

    This has been a continuous grumble for me. Just when I think I know what to do something changes and I'm lost.

    I'm very active with the Beasley YDNA Project. I can never get enough Y tests aboard to make me satisfied. I'm picky, though, about getting men with the surname or variant or closely related to men with the surname. There are several tests of male Beasleys who are not in the project. Some I can't seem to reach and others I seem to be willing but not successfully getting signed up. I like to leave people explicit and reliable illustrated instructions, but I either have a hard time replicating the process or I get it and it changes (over the years... not just willy-nilly.)

    I get plenty of request to join through the standard channel. Often, they are people simply interested in the surname... women or distant descendants with no Y test. Sometimes they come with FF tests or no test at all. I respond to every one and explain that without a relevant Y test, joining the project has nothing to offer. I then offer several alternatives about where they can learn more about the surname, lineages, DNA, etc including a willingness to work with them individually by email or even Zoom. Those with Y tests are readily welcomed, analyzed and interpreted.

    What I don't know is the most reliable way for the to get a test and join the project. I used to be able to send invitations, but that never seems to work any more. People say they don't get them. I try sending a test invitation to a different email address I have and it doesn't go through.

    I've thought that the best way is to send them to the FTDNA public site and hit the JOIN button. At one time, there was no clarity about having a test or getting a test. Now, when you click "JOIN" I'm happy to see two choices 1: "If you have not already purchased a kit, you can do so [here]." If you have a kit please sign in [here].

    When I pick the first choice, I get to the Beasley Surname Project Join page with the verbiage I set up and a signup form with name, email, repeat email, text space, reCAPTCHA and "CONTINUE". Hitting continue sends an request to join with no opportunity to purchase. I did a test and it showed up in my admin panel exactly as I entered it with no test.

    When I pick the second choice I sometimes get a "We are sorry..." message. Otherwise, I get to the standard individual FTDNA profile page with no specifc directions. There is a "Group Project" box with a "Join a Project" link, which is fine, but you'd be surprised how many people have never explored their profile page and go blank, missing the "obvious" when looking at it. But, if they DO hit the join link, they need to hunt for the Beasley Project.

    I know we think everybody should be able to do this things, but I have older people who aren't comfortable with computers and need very specific instructions with as few steps as possible to get through it.

    When websites are set up, they need to be tested for the simplest processes. ESPECIALLY when your objective is to get people to sign up and pay money buying stuff.

    There also used to be a simpler way for me to get people signed up for tests, to enter the correct information and give them a chance to pay or allow me to support the payment with donations. I finally got an individual answer on how to do that, but it isn't as simple as it used to be. I would think, if anything FTDNA would be happy to make it as easy as possible to bring in cash. I'm preparing to do a fund raiser and match donations with my own money (and more, probably). I'm eager to get a lot of tests. But I don't want to do this when the joining and buying process is as clunky and dumb and changing as it has been.

    Doug Beezley

  • #2
    One more thing... When I see YDNA matches in the project, the best I can do is to send an email to the email address listed with the name in the match. To often, I don't get a response and I wonder why. Did they even get the email? Has something changed? Can FTDNA do more to encourage and support people to make better use of Projects and Project Admins? What do new folks get with their results besides too much information they don't understand? Especially, YDNA tests are esentially useless with out knowledge or interpretation by someone ready to help. I'm a smart guy (so they say) and it took me several years to grasp how it works when I got my first FTDNA test in 2008.

    His the core of my grumble... I don't think FTDNA really supports and encourages admins enough. I get the sense that since GDPR, it has been FTDNAs objective to protect custoomers from admins... so that they have to go to the length of allowing "advanced permission" for admins to do much of anything to help people... that we can't send mail directly for those who aren't computer savvy.

    I THINK the problem might be that FTDNA has too many admins sign up without training or standards. I understand, that projects go wanting for admins, so "any warm body" will do. Perhaps admins could aspire for some sort of accreditation and recognition for special knowledge and quality performance. I suppose that might be a lot of work. But it might pay off. What if it increased customer satisfaction and results that would then result in increased sales?

    Just a thought.