StumbleUpon Hints and Tips
Today’s guest post is by Natalie Sayin, author of The Turkish Travel blog. She enjoys wasting time on social media sites and has an addiction to lemon meringue pie. In this article, she talks about her experience with Stumble Upon and shares her hints and tips for using it.
StumbleUpon is a social sharing and bookmarking site, mainly used by website owners. It has been around for a long-time, but is still attracting newcomers, eager to find out how to use it properly.
In this article, I list my StumbleUpon hints and tips, but before we start, let us discuss the true purpose of the site.
Many website owners describe it as a traffic generation tool. It can drive massive amounts of traffic to your site, but if you view it as only that, in one month, you will be bored and stop using it.
Stumbleupon is a social media site and to quote them…
“It is great for finding content you might never have otherwise found on your own”
StumbleUpon wants your experience to be worthwhile. Use it in the same context that you use Facebook or Twitter.
I use Stumbleupon to…
- Generate traffic to my own blog.
- Find blogs to comment on, building links to my own site
- Discover ideas for new blog posts. Note, I say discover ideas, not copy posts
- Follow my own hobbies of photography and writing
- To keep up-to-date with SEO techniques, ideas and discussions
I spend more time on Stumble upon than Facebook and I gain more out of it, than just traffic.
StumbleUpon Hints and Tips
StumbleUpon tailors your experience by paying attention to the following:
- Interests that you have indicated you like
- Other users that you interact with
- Your past browsing history on the site
Selecting Your Interests
The number one mistake people make after signing up and filling in their profile is, they do not choose interests. If you already have a Stumble Upon account and have not selected interests, stop reading and do it now.
Head to your Stumble account and look in the top right hand corner. There is an option to “discover”. Press that, and go wild with the interests. Do not just choose the interest that your website belongs in. Diversify. If you are a mommy blogger, but like travel, add it.
Make an effort, that at least once a week; you will review the top content in those interests.
Choosing Your StumbleUpon Pals
You can choose up to 500 people to follow and those people are crucial. Stumble upon takes into account the content they like when deciding what content to produce for you. To quote Stumbleupon….
A “follower” is a Stumbler who is following you. If your followers enjoy your Likes and Additions, and Like them, then these web pages will increase in popularity, circulate more widely and be seen by other Stumblers who follow the same Interests.
We do not have control over who follows us (thus the unlimited amount), but we do have control over whom we follow.
Every month, I check the profile of people I am following and if they have not logged into StumbleUpon with the last two months, I drop them. You can find out who is active by viewing their profile and the date of when they last liked a page. To be seen by SU as an active member of SU, only follow active users.
Discover people to follow here and display your StumbleUpon profile on your blog so that your readers can follow you.
Your Browsing History Counts
The pages that you like and dislike are important, as StumbleUpon will consider these when choosing what to show you next. It aims over time to tailor your experience, so that eventually it can predict what you will enjoy reading.
Now, I have read many articles that advise you to thumbs down randomly so StumbleUpon does not think you are trying to game the system. Well, I think, this is trying to game the system and it is wrong if the content of that website is good.
The simple rule? If you like the page, give it the thumbs up. If you do not like the page, give it the thumbs down. Do not make this difficult. Remember StumbleUpon is a social site; there is no way to game the system.
StumbleUpon considers many different signals so if you think, a couple of thumbs downs on pages, will give you credit in SU eyes, you are wrong. SU is aiming to improve your experience; they want to get to the stage when you press “like” numerous times in a row.
Now we have discussed the three main aspects of SU, there are a few more hints and tips to know.
Which posts do well on SU?
Posts with many photos, lists, humour, and quotes. My last post that did well on StumbleUpon was 23 landscapes photos of Turkey, a combination of a list and photos. It netted me over 16k of traffic and is still receiving visits now.
Be realistic with the topics of your blog. While a picture of your cat may seem cute to you, the chance is most of Stumbleupon will thumb it down. Now a picture of your cat sleeping on its back, legs in the air with a funny caption is more likely to get you viewers.
Blogs also do better than websites. If you have a real estate website, you can forget about creating massive amounts of traffic from StumbleUpon.
To Share or Not to Share
When two people follow each other, there is the choice to share. First instinct says great, and you share every page that you publish. Wrong move. Sharing five times in one week, earns you the title of spammer.
As a rule, share no more than once a week, and do not be scared to share pages from other sites as well. If you introduce or share varied posts from different websites, and they end up getting a lot of likes, that does give you kudos in the eyes of StumbleUpon.
Comments and Tags
Do not be scared to leave reviews about a page; this shows StumbleUpon that you particularly liked that page. Also, make good use of tags. Include as many as possible. One reason for pages not doing well is the lack of tags. Go wild. The more the better.
Should You Add Your Own Pages?
I have read several articles that insist you should not, however it is not that simple. I add all my own pages, but in the space of a week, I will also add ten or more pages from different, random websites.
StumbleUpon wants new content; they want to update their bank with exciting articles that will go down well with users. Adding your own page is only harmful, if you do not add pages from any other websites.
Also remember to consider the quality of the pages you are submitting. Remember we mentioned earlier in the article, the type of posts that do well. Submitting a 2000 word essay, is unlikely to get anyone on StumbleUpon excited.
Handy tip – Do not add homepages, only internal pages that concentrate on one subject at a time.
Other Tips To Help You
New, New, New
Get into the habit of using Stumble upon all the time, even when you are not on the site. Did you enjoy that article you found on Facebook? Thumbs up or introduce it to the system. Stumble upon is all about new and fresh content for its users. It recognises and loves it when you move outside your normal group of StumbleUpon buddies to connect with someone new.
There is no proven fact to say that SU. PR helps however; I do not think it causes harm either. It belongs to Stumble upon and shortens URLs, then posts the link to Facebook and/or Twitter. It can also show recommended times to post and has the ability to schedule posts, so that you can capture readers outside of your time zone.
Make sure every page of your website has a StumbleUpon button. Do not rely on people just using the toolbar as many people don’t install it. The SU button can also be a great prompt if people have found your site outside SU.
Install the toolbar for easy use. Not only does it have many shortcuts but also it helps you to use Stumbleupon when you are not on the site.
When you suggest a page, be specific with the category. You might have a travel blog, but if you feature on article on some local cuisine, add to the food section instead. You might be a mommy blogger, but if you post relationships tips, add to the married life section instead. Vary those category submissions and remember to add as many tags as possible.
The Last Tip That Is Very Important
Stumble at least five new pages a day, if possible more. The more time you put into SU, the more you will get from it.
Question – How much time do I spend on StumbleUpon?
Answer – An average of 45 minutes a day. I log on while I am having my morning cup of coffee so no extra time is tied up.
Question – What is the result?
Answer – Well, look at the number of referrals for my site for the last six months.
Do you have any questions about StumbleUpon? If so, post them below!
Do you have any hints and tips to add?
Footnote from Natalie – I am looking for new followers on StumbleUpon. My profile is here, leave yours below if you want me to follow you.