Experts Exchange is a site dedicated to bringing better IT assistance to the world through competitive gamification. Founded back in 1996, Experts Exchange invites knowledgeable techies from all over the world to answer questions from users in need who assign a point value to their query. A leaderboard keeps constant watch over the top experts and the top 5 site experts get their own special entry in the Hall of Fame!
Earn expert certifications by gaining a certain number of points in one zone (topic/category). Once you reach expert status you can qualify for a free t-shirt and post your certification on your fully customizable profile & make yourself available for freelance hire. Your profile also has a custom “Eeple ” avatar, and blogging options. These features allow users to make attachments to experts they’ve come to trust and really see them as individual people, not just text in a help forum.
Experts Exchange also Tweets your accomplishments to the world so even those not on the site can see how awesome you are.
Brand Manager Gary Weyel had some insights to as about competitive game mechanics that have cooperative benefits:
“The gamification elements of Experts Exchange motivate our experts to challenge one another and earn points. It motivates them to provide good answers fast. Ego is big—experts are rewarded for being smart, not only with the adulation of the askers but with reputation within the community.”
All the hard work pays off in the end with the Annual Expert Awards with categories like “Expert of the Year”-
The expert with the most points for the year- “Juggernaut” – The expert that has answered the most questions throughout the year, and even “Author of the Year” – for the top contributor of articles.
Experts Exchange seems to keep growing and evolving. Even though the site isn’t as big as Quora it still receives about 500,000 unique daily visitors seeking answers. The reason for this success is most likely due to users receiving quick, custom-tailored information from experts with proven ability and a positive reputation. As Gary Weyel puts it:
“The Experts Exchange system is set up to prompt askers to choose the solution that worked for them. On most forums, you have to dig through a ton of posts to find a possible solution. Our system makes it easier to find a proven solution fast.”
So people with questions get fast, accurate solutions. Those with the knowledge are getting rewarded and earning bragging rights and respect. So both kinds of users are able to get the exact experience they’re looking for, in a way that benefits the rest of the community.