Explore/search creators

It seems like I’ve been asking for this for years. Are there plans to revamp the explore and search functions? Explore lists the top 20 creators in each section, so if I want to find creators outside of the top 20, then I currently have four options: (1) the ‘suggested creators’ list that appears on the home page, (2) social media connect, (3) seeing who other people support, and (4) new and noteworthy/popular this week, and (5) the search function.

Taking these in order: (1) the suggested creators list is fine, but only seems to present the more popular creators; (2) social media connect just doesn’t work - at least, not for me; I’m only on Twitter, and some of the people it displays I don’t even follow; (3) seeing who other people support is fine, as a way of exploring, but is also fairly random; (4) new and noteworthy/popular this week are fine, as far as they go, but there are only 6 in each; (5) the search function is very basic.

Given the above, I would say that either or both of the explore and search functions need to be better. If you want to keep Explore for the top 20, then search needs to be better; if you want to keep search as basic, then explore needs to be better. As to why this problem has persisted for so long, I really can’t understand, and I haven’t been able to get a straight answer.

Regarding improving either the Explore and/or Search functions, these could include:

  • Categories that break down into sub-sections (e.g. comics by genre)

  • The ability to filter by tags (perhaps) - e.g. sci-fi, book reviews

  • Creators could be grouped according to various things: time on Patreon (e.g. most recent), most active, number of patrons, highest-earning, country/language, and so on - I’m sure others can think of more.

In summary, I think the discovery options that exist (which are mostly curated or algorithmic) don’t go far enough. If (for instance) I want to find the most popular table-top gaming review page based in the UK, then I should be able to do that without wading through unfiltered search results.

I would be interested to hear others’ thoughts on this, and of course Patreon’s - as to why such a facility (long-promised) still doesn’t exist.

1 Like

This has been a complaint for as long as I have been using the platform.
The only reason I can see for the search and explore functions being almost useless is brand image.
It really feels like Patreon wants to be the place where only super successful creators go. If I can search up a creator who’s been here for years and making $2 a month it can tarnish their brand image. It just doesn’t make sense if you truly want to help the ENTIRE creator community and not just a select portion of it.

Otherwise I see no reason for such a rudimentary explore and search function for the site.
It’s a community that isn’t really a community.
Well it seems to be only the community that Patreon wants to promote is the already popular and successful ones - it makes them look popular and successful themselves.

There is no other reason or explanation for being completely unable to search for anyone outside of the top 20 in their respective categories.

Considering the support team jumps on most other requests this one seems pointless to keep mentioning. I don’t feel it’s ever going to happen. I mean how hard is it to code a proper search function?

I’ve done it. It’s easy.

1 Like

I think that’s probably right. The only other reason I can think of is that it might expose the number of adult themed accounts (which are, I believe, already excluded from the search). And again, that would be about brand.

The only answer I’ve ever had about this stated that it was going to be improved at some point - but that was years ago. It would be nice if @erin or someone official could weigh in on this .

1 Like

There are many topics that are centered around this or include this in these forums and various staff have talked in them, btw, including but certainly not limited to topics like Improving the Non-Creator Experience - One post in there also talks about how a creator was told, in person by a patreon staffer, at a patreon conference, that they had no plans for this feature because it seems to be only a creator wanted feature and not one that general users want. Which we’ve been debunking since many of us ARE patrons, and we’ve been polling our patrons about it as well. Whether or not Patreon will listen is another matter. If you poll your patrons and get insight from “non creators” please post it there so we can continue to show patreon how absurd not having a search function is and how non-creators want it to. (Though at this point i don’t think many of us are hopeful because yeah, it’s probably a brand thing but it’s really hurting those who earn less so we keep pushing for it.)

The search function here on these forums can also help you find others of this topic too! (though it’s not the greatest search function. It does help in some cases though.)

2 Likes

Hi @Temrin. Yes, I thought there was probably discussion of this somewhere else - sorry.

However, I should have made clear: I WAS discussing this as a non-creator. Though I am a creator, I was actually thinking primarily in terms of discovering other creators, and not so much about being discovered (although that would help, I can see).

3 Likes

Thanks all! I’ve shared and will continue to share your comments with the product team around this (Erin is on vacation this week!) and think there are some great points being made.

I don’t know when, but there are some improvements coming for social media connect.

And @Temrin is right, this has been discussed a lot in that other thread, but I’ll leave this one separate so the team here can follow along.

1 Like

Oh, and it also sounds like looking at what other creators are doing would be helpful in general - so discoverability can also be a tool to give you ideas.

1 Like

That’s what we were also talking about in the other threads as well, as non-creators. :slight_smile: It’s so hard to find people as a user. So i’m right there with you. I just meant that we had received some information stating that it was mostly people who are also creators wanting this and somehow it was forgotten that many of us are regular patrons too. (Of course we are going to be more interested in improving the platform since as creators we are a lot more invested in it then your average patron is and i’ve found that lots of patrons don’t know where the best place to make a suggestion is and don’t really look for it BUT when prompted by a creator they follow, are happy to give feedback. It looks like they just need a little more interaction, whereas creators already have places to interact with staff, like here.)

3 Likes

Thanks for your response, @carla. Apart from social media connect - which is a good idea, but doesn’t currently work - I don’t have a problem with any of the other forms of discovery. It’s just the last of a proper explore/search facility, which is just a bit mystifying.

3 Likes