Despite the recent hype around riend.tech, some decentralized social networks are still having a tough time getting users to sign up and stay on their social media platforms.
Two executives in the decentralized social (DeSo) media space told Cointelegraph that as much as 99% of users moving into DeSo for the first time will end up quitting, either due to clunky onboarding or simply not knowing anyone.
Ed Moss, the head of growth for layer-1 blockchain firm DeSo, said the process of cryptocurrencies from an exchange, transferring it to a wallet with an installed Chrome extension, and then paying high gas fees to transact on-chain or across chains is tedious and expensive for first-time users.
“We’ve found that 99% of mainstream users will drop off at that first step, so simplifying this flow is mission critical.”
Therefore, the single most important factor is to make sure the onboarding process is as frictionless as possible, Moss said.
Imagine you had to mint everything we post on social media and had to pay gas fees. How would you spend your time, money and energy? This is what you should be focusing on.
— Ruben Cress #HIVE (@RubenCress) October 21, 2022
But the problems can start even before this point, according to Suhail Kakar, the creator of DeSo app Onboard.
Because users need to familiarize themselves with blockchain, smart contracts, and wallets before they sign up, they often shy away from taking the first step, Kakar explained.
“A party where you don’t know anyone.”
Catching up to the massive network effects that web2 social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and X (formerly Twitter) won’t be an easy task either.
Kakar said DeSo apps need to spend more time building their communities because making a presence in these applications is “a bit like going to a party where you don’t know anyone.”
He believes that as more top-tier creators and influencers move on-chain it could be a tipping point, as users will ultimately follow where the high-quality content goes.
Data from April shows that Facebook, Instagram and Twitter hosted about 2.98 billion, 2 billion, and 372.9 million monthly active users, respectively. By comparison, one of the most visited decentralized social media networks Odysee averaged only 5.3 million average monthly unique users between January and April, according to CoinGecko.