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11 months 1 week ago - Commented on So, FDM is only for "low accuracy prototypes"?
This doesn't seem right indeed. I'll look into it asap
Hi Simon, thanks for the suggestion, happy to iterate / debate. In your suggestion, what scenarios would you recommend customers to go non-FDM? Or do you feel the technical specifications should be leading there?
This is most likely the result of including "retention" into the Hub rankings, see changelog. The checkout does not appear to influence overall FDM numbers (see my earlier comment). Feel free to nudge firstname.lastname@example.org to find out about the cause
1. We've discussed with a lot of experts as well as a good amount of Hubs, which were all supportive of the change. It's not standard practice we ask all Hubs for input on changes.
5. See @Enza3D description above, which is accurate. We feel it appeals to a more professional audience (without harming existing audiences) and also differentiates FDM clearly from both SLA, mostly visual without mechanical props, and SLS, best mechanical props. Also here @Enza3D has mentioned good points.
6. We implemented the FDM guidelines already to prevent a decline in print quality. I can confirm this is working. Success means high conversion numbers, for a variety of materials, without decline in terms of absolute numbers.
7. I completely understand your view. Therefore I've intended to put data arguments forward (see earlier comment) with the goal of taking away that concern. Also, to be clear, 3D Hubs cannot benefit from any change if it does not benefit our Hubs.
8. I apologize, fear that's a result of not being a native. Was not intended that way.
I do hope this answers your questions.
Thanks both, it is indeed true that we're trying to appeal to a more professional audience. We believe that this doesn't move us away from makers at all as the features we're developing should benefit both.
@Enza3D's explanation on why we use the word "prototyping" for FDM is correct. It will appeal to a more professional audience. I also strongly feel this does not marginalize FDM at all, as the intended audience is looking for exactly that, prototyping. For the non-professional audience, price is always the key factor, which we've also clearly tried to indicate for FDM. Therefore, we expect FDM will not decline because of this (as said, I do agree some copy could be more nuanced)
We're running an A/B/C test. I can't change the test halfway as that would remove all possibilities of a significant test. I do hear your points and agree we should consider alternative copy. We aim to reach significance early next week, after which we can implement changes (or drop this variant all together if it doesn't perform well).
In the near future we hope to automate metrics such as estimated price and speed, both on which FDM will score well. Also, the current positioning as "fast and affordable" highlights the 2 most important aspects why most customers use 3D printing. My view is thus a little bit more nuanced on how 'bad' FDM is currently positioned. Again, the data confirms this.
That's fair enough indeed. When the first significant data comes in, we'll work on some copy changes as well. Will keep you posted on that
@cobnut thanks for raising your concern, allow me to quickly explain.
From our customer research we've learned that the biggest issue they face when using 3D Hubs is low print quality. Specifically for FDM prints. We've found that this is mostly caused by unrealistic customer expectations concerning FDM. Especially professionals who are used to injection molded parts which are then compared against FDM. Some very high potential customers state this is the key reason they don't use 3D Hubs more often.
As such, the goal for 3D Hubs should be two-fold:
We started with the latter by adding an excerpt to the checkout a few weeks ago, that highlights FDM limitations. What we've found is that, if exposed to these limitations, no fewer FDM orders are made, but print quality ratings do increase. In short, it appears that the excerpts succeeds in setting customer expectations better.
The new cards in the checkout (only shown to a small group of customers btw) aim to do the same. The data so far seems to indicate it's working, no fewer FDM orders, but increasing print quality ratings (not yet significant though).
So, even though I understand it looks like we're sending people away from FDM, the data shows differently. Customers choosing FDM are currently happier customers, meaning they will come back more often which benefits all Hubs.
Our long-term vision is, and has always been, to build a distributed platform that can deliver reproducible quality parts. See our original manifesto. At this point, 3D print technologies still have their limitations which we should communicate clearly. My personal belief, is that over time the technology will evolve into a fully reproducible technology and this will no longer be necessary.
Hope this explains our reasoning. Happy to answer any further questions.
1 year 1 month ago - Commented on Comparison of (Industrial) SLA and Multi-Jetting (Polyjet)
Ok, good points. Thanks