I think there are a subset of tags that we can make easier to use by dropping the "users" portion of the tag. I propose the following:

  1. be renamed to (16 existing questions)
    • I think the "user" is implied and not needed. When a question is about retention, it is about how a user (or group of users) can be retained
  2. be renamed to (1 existing question)
    • Again, I think the "user" is implied when discussing exerts within the community.
  3. be renamed to (11 existing questions)
    • The questions in this tag are about how to increase use participation via certain actions. The "user" is implied.
  • 2
    I agree with all of these except for the 1st one as "retention" alone doesn't seem obvious what it is and I'd rather not resort to tag wikis for this kind of thing. May 27, 2015 at 21:54
  • 1
    Other than retaining members, what would you expect it to be associated with that would make just "retention" unclear?
    – Andy Mod
    May 27, 2015 at 22:28
  • when I think of retention, nothing specific comes to mind. In the context of CB SE, sure, that is the only relevant thing, but having an ambiguous tag does not make it easier to find relevant questions. May 27, 2015 at 22:31
  • I don't think it is ambiguous if it fits in the context of CB.se
    – Andy Mod
    May 27, 2015 at 22:33
  • 1
    It's not necessarily ambiguous to us, but it is a lot more vague to new users May 27, 2015 at 22:34
  • 1
    Tags should be interpreted in the context of their sites, no? May 28, 2015 at 1:37
  • @AnnonomusPenguin, I've removed retention from consideration for this proposal. We can circle back to it at a later date, perhaps. Now I just want to consider "engagement" and "experts"
    – Andy Mod
    May 29, 2015 at 0:08
  • 3
    To me, "user-retention" seems to be a commonly applied technical term in the context of (online) communities with a well defined meaning, whereas just "retention" of whatever is not. So I personally would stick with "user retention". May 31, 2015 at 12:10
  • 2
    @just_curious “Customer retention” is a thing, as is member retention for nonprofits, and I'm pretty sure that's where “user retention” comes from. Jun 4, 2015 at 23:54
  • "Member retention" is definitely a thing in the part of the non-profit world I'm active in. Jun 5, 2015 at 1:26

4 Answers 4


If is to remain in some form, we should rename it to either or . I favor the former for simplicity's sake, but I note there is some disagreement about that.

Ultimately we might or might not need the tag; it's hard to tell until we have some more questions. But we shouldn't let fear of retagging one question stop us from making a general change away from the online-only "users" terminology.


Nothing special about users here. However people's behavior can be very different in different environments; what people do in real life isn't always what they do online. So:

  1. Go through and retag the few questions that are not about online scenarios (if any). I haven't checked all the questions, but the sample I looked at was all about online stuff except How do I help members of a community focus on work when they want to be social?, which is about physical meetings so I suggest .
  2. Rename to and drop the name.

“Problem” is kind of a subset of “behavior” here. I think a lot of these questions should be tagged in addition to . As for the xxx, I think continuing on the “members” theme is fine: rename to and drop the synonym.

Could be renamed to , or just . “Retention” isn't just about members, it can be about other actors such as customers, but I think that in our community, “retention” is intrinsically about members.

Monica suggests a distinction between member retention and something else — I guess audience retention. I'm not sure about this. Should we have , and maybe even the intermediate ? It feels to me that we're getting out of community building and into marketing if we get that serious about non-members.

This thread shows that some people are not familiar with the meaning of “retention”, so we might want to throw in a synonym, but I don't know what. Please suggest what you'd use if you aren't familiar with the word.

I think we can safely drop here.

This is about experts. Just rename to .

User experience is a concept. Keep.

  • "Monica suggests a distinction between member retention and something else — I guess audience retention." -- not my intention. I think on this community, "retention" means your users or members. Other people use "retention" to mean things like customers, but that's not relevant here. (I think somebody else brought that up somewhere in this discussion.) "Member-retention" works for online and physical communities; to me "user-retention" works only for online. Granted that's most of our questions, but why not have a tag that covers both? Jun 9, 2015 at 2:24
  • 1
    @MonicaCellio If you don't think we should distinguish member retention from audience retention (which indeed is kind of irrelevant here), then I do recommend retention. Jun 9, 2015 at 2:26
  • 1
    I think "retention" is the right tag (as I said in my answer). A "member-retention" synonym might be helpful. I don't think we need to do more there. Jun 9, 2015 at 2:29

"User retention" is a common term for online communities, but is out of place when talking about physical communities. Non-profits, in my experience, call this "member retention" or just "retention". We should rename to just so it applies in both contexts. We could define synonyms for "user-retention" and "member-retention" if that would help with discoverability.

I have trouble using with a straight face to ask a question about my local (physical) organization. And I'd look at it a little cross-eyed if asking a question about an email list (lists have members, not users). But sites like Reddit and Stack Exchange have "users" more than "members", so we can't just rename it "member-retention".


I don't think any of these are really necessary or desirable.

  1. Stricken, per comments, so we can skip it.

  2. I don't really care to act on a tag that's been applied to only one question, unless it's to burn a meta-tag or connect a clearly valuable synonym. It's certainly not causing any harm. I can imagine that having experts on staff would be a concern for some communities, so I'd oppose renaming to the more general at this time.

  3. I think just_curious makes a good point about :

    To me, "user-retention" seems to be a commonly applied technical term in the context of (online) communities with a well defined meaning, whereas just "retention" of whatever is not.

    I'd like this tag to be suggested whether someone starts typing "retention" or "user retention" into the field and that's not going to happen if it's renamed, so I don't think this is a good change for ease of use.

  • 2
    2. Every tag starts applied to a single question. That's the best time to decide what the tag name should be, if the concept has already been identified as worth a tag. 3. is bogus: “customer retention” is a thing, as is member retention for nonprofits, and I'm pretty sure that's where “user retention” comes from. Jun 4, 2015 at 23:56
  • 1
    @Gilles The point regarding #2 is that we can't make any useful prediction about usage based on one data point and an extremely low volume of questions. Unless it's a obvious, dramatic improvement, all we're doing is speculation and busywork. I'm not sure how the rest of your comment is relevant; how many such questions do you expect on this site, and how does the proposed change make tags any easier to use for those questions?
    – Air
    Jun 5, 2015 at 0:05

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .