8 Tips from Farmville on designing for user engagement

Nice list from Philmichaelson.com on how Zynga, creators of the Facebook game Farmville design the game to encourage and boost user engegement.

Earlier this week John Doerr, an investor in Google, Amazon, and Intuit, said Zynga is the fastest growing venture he’s ever been a part of.  Zynga’s flagship game, FarmVille, has 3 times the reach of Twitter. FarmVille has 71 million active users while Twitter has around 22 million active users (Twitter has 110 million registered users, of which an estimated 20% are likely active).  Perhaps more impressively, Zynga is estimated to generate $50 million in revenue from the most engaged members who buy virtual goods and keep up a toolbar.

1. Reward users for returning in a short time period
2. Reward users for helping friends every day
3. Allow users to create without typing
4. Show progress…everywhere…on everything
5. Make users feel lonely without friends–because if they get friends on, they’ll stay longer
6. Enable self expression
7. Offer increasing levels of complexity for mastery
8. Have surprises & limited time events

Read more at philmichaelson.com