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I'm building a site which will hold short videos on a variety of topics - similar to TED.com. I'm seeking inspiration for the best way to engage users and encourage them to browse for videos.

I've implemented a Search function which looks at the video's title and description fields, but this is only useful if you know exactly what you're looking for. I'm trying to encourage viewers to browse within categories of videos, or to watch another similarly-themed video after watching one video.

I've added a Tag class which is related one-to-many with the videos, so I can suggest similar videos in a "what to watch next" prompt.

Currently I'm showing an alphabetically-sorted list of 'representative' tags which I chose (these tag buttons are hard-coded into the UI). This works, but can definitely be improved:

enter image description here

I looked for inspiration at Flickr, and noted that they simply use a search box for tag searching. However, they have enough content so that it's likely that a given search will return something - currently I don't have enough videos to guarantee this. TED.com uses curated playlists and also exposes all tags alphabetically.

What are some other effective strategies to expose the tag-search functionality on the user interface?

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Since you posted the question with tags I assume you saw StackExchange's tag search feature for adding tags, why not use something similar for searching tags and mix that with a few recommended tags.

enter image description here

This way you can limit the number of tags you display by default, simply show tags related to the current video and curious users will click them to see related content.

By writing or: users that don't want to use your suggested tags will realize they can search for more tags.

If you do not want the possibility of tags being returned with no videos in it you can just not display them in the search results if they are empty. Or by displaying x 0 next to the tag users will know there are no related videos and make the choice themselves if they want to click it.

  • Thanks, I like that suggestion. I also think that Stack Exchange does a great job on the tag entry process – Stephen Lead Jul 25 '15 at 4:42

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