Make your site or blog colourful and welcoming and include photos of people and activities from the group. Ideally, add a page just for suggestions. If it’s a WordPress site, this could be one of the static pages, so it’s always visible from the home page.
If you’re going to have a chat facility on your site, make sure it has a clear set of rules. If people say something out of place, make sure they’re (gently, but firmly) admonished so everyone knows that there are standards and it’s a friendly place.
You don’t have to allow commenting on every page. If you so desire, you can turn off commenting if you simply want
Make sure your chat facility has a clear set of rules; let people know there are standards
to be able to use the site as an information resource.
For new members, their mailing list sign-up email may be their first direct contact with you, so give them a warm welcome. Emails you send out regularly should also always be friendly. Mention members’ activities and achievements in your emails and blog posts to make them feel included. Ask people to let you know of things they need help with or related projects they’d like you to publicise. If someone’s taken on a particular project, ask them to write it up for the group website or blog. Writing from the first-person perspective is a great way to inspire other people.
Acknowledging everyone’s input will encourage them to continue contributing and may also prompt other members to volunteer their time.