October 19, 2011

GROU.PS – Interactive Communities in a Digital Age

Facebook and Google+ are excellent tools for connecting with friends and colleagues online. Unfortunately, both networks have limiting factors that can make them less-than-ideal for groups of people with varying needs. GROU.PS is a platform that people from all walks of life can use to create their own interactive communities without any of the barriers that larger social networks tend to create.

If you’re looking to develop a central hub where your friends can collaborate and interact about shared interests or affiliations, then GROU.PS is worth checking out. The web-app offers free plans and limited trials for people who aren’t quite sure about taking the leap and moving their existing networks to GROU.PS from Facebook or LinkedIn. Of course, the first step after signing up for a GROU.PS is to create a new group. Choose a title, tagline, tags, and type up a description for your new community, then decide what the privacy settings should be. From there, you can choose one of GROU.PS’ 70 templates to create a unique look for your new group site. Spread the word and email your friends invitations to join, and then get started posting content using GROU.PS’ special wiki tools. From the group wiki page, you can add photos, videos, blog posts, and even create community forums. Group administrators can set roles for members and decide who can control and access which areas of a group site.

If monetization is something that you’re interested in, then GROU.PS makes that easy. GROU.PS is configured for both Google AdSense and PayPal. It also lets you use your own ad providers just by adding a few lines of code to the HTML. Overall, GROU.PS is a great alternative for people who want to build robust community networks without all the restrictions that exist with most well known social networking sites.

Practical Uses:

  • Create a group where the moms in your neighborhood can chat
  • Set up a community forum for your colleagues at work
  • Share photos and videos with family members in a private environment
  • Make money by selling ads on the forum you created for people who love crafts

Insider Tips:

  • Groups can be made public or private
  • Admins can choose from more than 70 templates when setting up a page
  • New pages can be set up in as little as five minutes
  • Users can choose which apps they want to utilize on their group pages

What we liked:

  • GROU.PS is completely flexible and customizable based on a group’s needs
  • People can actually make money off of the forums and group pages they create
  • Additional functionalities can be developed using GROU.PS’ APIs
  • The files that people upload can be tagged for easy organization

What we didn’t like:

  • Users have to upgrade to a Gold plan to get premium customer support


Company Info:

  • Launched: 2006
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Palo Alto, California
  • Founded by: Emre Sokullu
  • Web site:


  • Free plan
  • Bronze plan is $2.95/month
  • Silver plan is $8.95/month
  • Gold plan is $19.95/month
  • Platinum plan is $29.95/month


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