Vanilla Forums

Vanilla Forums

(59)
4.4 out of 5 stars

Vanilla Forums allows you to create a customized community that rewards positive participation, automatically curates content and lets members drive moderation.

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Vanilla Forums review by <span>Geraldine V.</span>
Geraldine V.
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Vanilla Forums

What do you like best?

Vanilla Forums constitute a very flexible solution that we're able to customize and adapt as our userbase grows and as the scope of our product line expands. It has scaled really well so far and we expect to take advantage of some more advanced integrations (including potentially zendesk) moving forward.

What do you dislike?

The analytics features that are included in the dashboard UI are rather underwhelming, we end up writing API queries to get the info we really care about. It would be nice if more of that was built in.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

We use Vanilla Forums as our main channel for providing technical and scientific support to the users of our genomic analysis software package and related cloud services. The forums enable us to communicate knowledge and collect feedback and issue reports from our users in an efficient manner. Over the past 5 years, we've grown our userbase from a few thousand to >55K registered users. Our users often express that they come to us based on the reputation of the software and stay with us because they're so happy with the support we provide, and the Forums are an integral part of that.

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Vanilla Forums review by <span>Patrick M.</span>
Patrick M.
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Vanilla Forums Put Our Community into Overdrive (and the 21st Century)

What do you like best?

As a decade old company with forums even older that that (!) the Team at Vanilla was able to port over our collective knowledge into a platform that is mobile-friendly, intuitive and fun to use. We have seen our time-on-site increase as well as overall engagement.

The addition of gamification (badges) and the ability to easily embed photos, videos and GIFs has made the user experience something that folks rave about. And the fact we could leave our old, outdated software behind (good riddance!) enables us to focus on Customer Success vs Tech Support.

Finally, the turnaround time for support questions and modifications (included or paid) via Vanilla is both transparent and quick. I've never had to wait more than a month for a feature, and my support rep replies in less than 24 hours ever time.

What's not to like?

What do you dislike?

So far, there's nothing to complain about. One year in and still going strong.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Definitely worth giving them a call and seeing what they can do with your existing community.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

A robust, up-to-date online space for my community members to interact and share knowledge and stories with one another.

What Online Community Management solution do you use?

Thanks for letting us know!
Vanilla Forums review by <span>Emilia D.</span>
Emilia D.
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Best Kept Community Secret

What do you like best?

Excellent Sales to Customer experience. What the salesperson sold is what we received and more. The customer success manager knows his product and if he doesn't know the answer, he gets it to you asap. He is also very proactive in managing the customer relationship.

I am surprised that not more people know about this community vendor.

What do you dislike?

I haven't experienced anything that I don't like yet.

Recommendations to others considering the product

-They don't have a mobile app but I hear it is in the works! The web version works well though.

-Make sure you have your resources to go because it is an easy set-up.

-Take their online training and webinars. Very helpful for launching!

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

I started our WalkMe user groups on the phone and in LinkedIn groups. I quickly realized a needed a more robust platform to scale a fast growing community online and to segment the customer experiences by platform. Today we are excited to have a community for Workday®, Salesforce®, External, General & for Product testing. It has been a great experience to work with such a professional and available team. We have also been able to create the customer experience we want without investing in heavy professional services that many competitors nearly require. This product is easy to use for the admins and for customers.

Thank you, Vanilla!

Vanilla Forums review by <span>Paul C.</span>
Paul C.
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Vanilla - is it a tasty experience?

What do you like best?

Two things strike me as the most important since I've used Vanilla forums.

#1 The layout. Having the search function at the top where it's easy to see for new and existing users is especially useful for us as a lot of our community will come to the forums to find something technical out about accountancy. Having the search function right there helps them find what they need without any fuss. Since using Vanilla we've seen a massive increase in people using the search function which is great. As well as search, everything you really need is all on the front page. You can see active threads and you get notifications for any favourites you've added, making tracking important topics and moderating a breeze.

2. Customer service. Every time we've had a query about the forum we've been able to get it sorted very quickly and efficiently in a professional manner. Brendan is great! Thank you.

What do you dislike?

The 'best of' section is kind of redundant and a bit confusing. It displays tons of dated and unrelated content and as I understand it there's no way of removing this as it's part of Vanilla.

Recommendations to others considering the product

If you're looking for a clean, easy to navigate and customise platform Vanilla is a great option. You can get a free trial too so why not give it a try?

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Our community seek and possess a lot of technical knowledge and our students sometimes require deep understand of the topics they are revising for. The forum is a great place professionals and students can come to help each other and transcend their experiences to each other to help with their business or career development.

Vanilla Forums review by <span>James B.</span>
James B.
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A solid platform with lots of customisation

What do you like best?

The platform we use has two subforums and a variety of roles for our different customer types. We need a forum that can allow a variety of different access and permissions on specific threads. We also needed a tool that lets contributors keep a level of anonymity but also allows us to identify the authority of each user so that their comments and discussions can be trusted by our community. Within this complex framework, Vanilla excels at giving us the control we need that has grown an authoritative forum that offers real value to our customers.

What do you dislike?

Although the website is responsive and can be customised to any level you need, it's missing a dedicated mobile app that allows for push notifications which can alert users to activity on the forum immediately without having to check their e-mails.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

We're connecting our customers and building a peer support network that offers a better level of support than we could provide on our own. We work within a very technical industry and by using the expertise of our long-term customers we are building a longer relationship with our newest and progressing customers.

Vanilla Forums review by <span>Brett L.</span>
Brett L.
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ZTEUSA Z-Community Admin retrospective..

What do you like best?

If I had to say what I like the best it would have to be where I spend about 80% of my time in. That would be the admin Dashboard. It is a fully functional and fluid space for any community administrator.

What do you dislike?

Being honest, there are a few things that we have to have custom work done that were available on our previous platform, but when we ask for the work it is done quickly and professionally.

Recommendations to others considering the product

If switching to Vanilla it would be a great opportunity to come up with a new theme for your community. There are endless opportunities available to you. Think about what you want Vanilla to do for you and tell them up front. They will work with you for most any solution you need.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

We started a community last year on a different platform. We were out of touch with our customers and had no way to communicate with them. Our platform at the time got us in the door with our customers, and thru their feedback we realized that we needed a community with more flexibility and personal service. We realized that solution thru Vanilla.

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