With so much forum software available on the internet today, running a forum is pretty simple. However, running a successful forum is really difficult. Any forum does not get crowded with individuals discussing various topics right away. Forums behave initially like blogs and then ride up with user-generated content.
Assume you start a forum for pet owners and want others to join. Who would join a forum with no postings and only one member, you? You will need to create several profiles on the site and begin debating various topics. This is similar to blogging, but with a twist. When people begin to visit your forum, it will appear busier, and they will believe that they will receive responses after submitting topics. Your forum will grow in this manner, and one day you will only have one task with a forum, and that will be forum management. Spam is being removed, and posts are being moved to suitable categories.
Although I suggest Xenforo, if you don’t want to pay for one, SMF appears to be a superior option. However, you should make your own conclusion by visiting the forums listed below.
Here are the top ten discussion forums for you to establish your own –
1) Xenforo – Price ($140)
By far the most popular forum software in the world today is Xenforo. A few good guys from vbulletin departed to start xenforo. Of course, they had to deal with a few lawsuits from Vbulletin, but they eventually pushed VBulletin out of the #1 spot. Most of the world’s largest and busiest forums, which were formerly powered by Vbulletin, switched to xenforo. So far, it has the fewest issues and operates well with the fewest server resources.
2) invisionpower – Price ($175)
Invision Power is another well-known forum script that, while not free, powers many major online communities. Its fluid theme design, light colours, and quick script make it a fantastic alternative for professional webmasters looking to establish their own forum.
3) Mybb – Price (Free)
Mybb is another lightweight free open-source forum script based in PHP/Mysql which looks cool and competes with the paid forum software. Another advantage is that you can easily migrate from any other known forum software to MyBB using the MyBB surge system.
4) Simple Machine Forum – SMF – Open Source (Free)
SMF is the greatest free forum software currently available. SMF powers one of the most popular forums on the internet, nairaland. This is simple to install and run because it is built with PHP and MySQL. A variety of customised free and paid themes are also available to tailor it to your specific requirements. If you’re creating a forum and don’t want to spend more than $100 on Xenforo at first, you can go with SMF. You can always migrate in between after it has a few visits and you are confident of its success.
5) PHPbb – Open Source (Free)
PHPbb is yet another PHP-based open-source forum software. It was formerly the most popular free forum script on the planet. However, due to its inability to combat forum spam, it fell down the ranks. It is still widely used by users seeking free open-source bulletin board software for their websites.