Monday, August 25, 2008

SIP Website Suggestions

In a comment on my last post, Mike Bass asks for suggestions that would make the SIP website better. OK, here you go:
  1. Add an online catalog - The IPF site in Israel has an online listing of stamps and cancels, why can't the SIP website have one? Having items like the different dated definitive plateblocks would help, as would listing items other than stamps, such as revenues, postal stationary, and machine vended postage (Frama, Klussendorf, Amiel, Massad, etc).
  2. Add a place for members to swap items - I have a ton of duplicates that I would love to swap with other collectors. They are not really worth posting on E-bay (special cancels, plateblocks, etc), but would be great trading material if there were anyplace to trade it.
  3. How about press releases from Israel Post? After I had bought the items I needed from a dealer from the Jerusalem 08 show, I got a letter from the philatelic service offering me many of the items at face value. Had I known in advance about this, I could have saved some money.
  4. Even better, have the SIP sell some of the unique items from the shows through the website.
  5. How about a list of dealers of Israel material with links to there web pages?
  6. A list of what books are available from the SIP library. Even better, a way to request a book from the library online. I have only tried to borrow a book from the library once, and was unsuccessful in doing so. Apparently the book I requested was listed in the inventory published in the SIP newsletter (I have only seen the list published once, can't remember when) but was not able to be located.
  7. How about some articles? There really is no content on the current site. Instead of just having a list of slide presentations available, how about posting them as PDF's?
  8. Virtual meetings? How about having regular virtual meetings? It can be done via NetMeeting, live chat, some kind of conference call, etc.
  9. A place for members to post a want list.

Anyway, there are some quick suggestions. The most important thing to do is to get content on the site that drives people to visit it on a regular basis. The trade and discussion forums are pretty useless on there, since no one is visiting the site to leave messages. Until today, it had been a few months since I visited the site, and that was only to pull up the e-mail address of some of the officers. On the other hand, I visit the virtual stamp club every few days, just to read up and see what is going on.

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