StumbleUpon Quintuplet From The King Of Blogging Gobshites

Yes that title makes total sense, but you will have to keep reading to find out exactly why.

Stumble Popup

How often do you read a great blog post and forget to share it with your friends? The Stumbleupon toolbar is often a long mouse move away, and most people don’t use shortcuts when browsing, because they can’t remember them, or because of conflicts between different toolbars and other applications that are running on a system by default.

You hold down the right mouse button and up pops some custom navigation

Stumbleupon Popup

Then you just move your mouse slightly, either to navigate within your browser, or to do various things with Stumbleupon.

This is brand new software, so you would expect a few bugs or shortcomings.

  • Registration – The registration procedure isn’t very automated, and requires you email a hardware key to them, and in return you are sent a registration code. Whilst having a human element in the chain limits people cheating the registration process, it does cause some inconvenience and confusion.
  • Hotkeys – The software relies on sending hotkey information, and if you have a few popular toolbars, you are going to hit conflicts. In my case the hotkey to stumble something conflicts with Roboform, although that was easy to fix.
  • Roboform Shortcuts

I strongly suggest you grab this software before they start charging for it. (and I am not making a penny from suggesting it)

Converting Traffic From Digg & Stumbleupon

There are so many articles about how to get traffic from Digg and Stumbleupon, but very few that analyze the difference in behaviour once you get traffic from a social media site.

Tim is one of the few people who has actually tackled the difference between Digg and Stumbleupon users and also how they interact with different page elements.
If you want to maximise the value you give to visitors from these services, and thus the benefit you receive, you should definitely read both articles multiple times.
Notice the emphasis – you have to give people what they want for them to take an action that is a benefit to you, such as:-

  • linking to your article
  • subscribing to RSS feed
  • sharing your article with friends

Stumbleupon Friends

Stumbleupon isn’t just about gaining lots of traffic to your own sites, in many ways that is just a bonus of a little reciprocal stumbling of the blogs you read on a regular basis.
You should avoid “over-stumbling” the same domains – I have noticed that there can be a reduced effect of stumbles if the same people stumble the same domains all the time, even if they have powerful accounts.
I have learnt a lot about Stumbleupon from Maki – in the past I pointed my readers in the direction of his comprehensive guide to Stumbleupon.
Now Maki has written a followup which emphasises that not only can you gain traffic from using Stumbleupon on a regular basis, but you can also find lots of great content suggested by your friends.

How To Test The Effectiveness of Social Media Traffic?

This is something I am in the middle of setting up on my own sites, so I will have a more in-depth post coming soon.
My friend Alister Cameron has some interesting code set up on his site, that detects referrer traffic from various social media sites such as Digg and Stumbleupon and offers them a different user experience, by simply asking them to take a different specific action.
You could also take a look at the landing sites plugin for inspiration (uses Google search terms) and my friend Rob over at Yack Yack also offered some code a few months ago for handling search queries.
I know many Digg and Reddit button display plugins also work by using the referring URL, so there is plenty of code to play around with.

What tools would you use to measure the traffic?

  • Crazyegg – this is one of the obvious choices – you would be able to measure user activity using a heatmap
  • Clickheat – this seems to be a great script you can host on your own server, and it is possible to do some quite sophisticated tracking with it, though you might hit performance issues if you go overboard.
    It would be possible to set this up not just as an A/B splittest, or multivariate, but also based on the source of the traffic.
  • Google Analytics – you could probably do something with Google’s analytics which has just had it’s interface revamped, though my account is still set for the old interface. Extracting data from Google Analytics has always been fairly difficult, hopefully as they roll out the new version, things have improved.

You might think Clickheat is going overboard, but I know among my readers there are some very fanatical testers who would be quite happy to set up a dedicated server just to run a script like Clickheat, if it allowed them more granular testing results.

Here is the simple code you place on your pages

<script type="text/javascript" src="/clickheat/js/clickheat.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript">
clickHeatPage = 'ABC';
initClickHeat();
</script>
<noscript><a href="http://www.labsmedia.com/clickheat/index.html" title="ClickHeat: clicks heatmap">clickheat</a></noscript>

ABC – you can make this as granular as you like, depending on the limits of your server hosting your tracking script. If you are just testing one sales page, you could easily change that to a source of traffic or adwords keyword group.
No Script – I would probably remove this link

It would certainly be possible to write a simple WordPress plugin to insert code based on a specific tracking code within your pages, or based upon a page ID or referring source.

I still have to test to see how well it works if you have multiple copies of the code on each page – with the current code (though it is GPL) there is no way to get specific birds-eye-view information based on groups of pages IDs.

The King Of Blogging Gobshites

About a month ago Gavin wrote a post about dofollow which I thought was remarkable, but not because of the content. The content was good, anyone talking about dofollow immediately gets a huge plus in my book, but the title he used for the post in my mind just hit a sweet spot, in a typically Irish way.

I Dont Trust Blogging Gobshites

I gave the post a Stumble just because of the title.

A month later Gavin has followed up the post with the following, and as intended it has piqued my vanity. I have been looking for the best opportunity to link through to him from a post that will actually give him hopefully even more traffic.

Andy Beard – The King of Blogging Gobshites

Actually the original post didn’t get a huge amount of Stumbleupon traffic, but even light Stumbleupon activity is far more significant than a couple of Diggs.

Quintuplet?

I decided as I had 5 things I wanted to talk about all on the same subject (Stumbleupon) to add it to Darren’s group writing project.
I don’t expect all of these items to be of interest to everyone, but I hope both beginners and my most advanced readers find something useful.

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Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for the Links Andy, I really recommend using clcikheat and Google Analytics for tracking exactly what works and doesn’t work on your site. A good example is advertising many people forget how ad blind Socialites (for want of a better term) are and therefore waste their prime spaces on pages with adverts that are not being seen. Instead that space could be better used providing more information or some other call to action.

    One warning when heavily tracking sites, if you look like your reaching a popular page on sites its best to turn off any local tracking, as you will find your server load increased dramatically ;)

    • says

      I can imagine

      However I also know among my readers I have some who are probably more fanatical than even you are, and they are tracking “money pages” that receive far more traffic over a short period of time than even Digg can throw at them.

      Adding a dedicated server just to run Clickheat isn’t going to cause them any problems, if it means they can perform better testing.

      What I intend to do once I actually start seeing significant traffic is to work out a way to have every page element controllable based upon referrer.

  2. says

    Thanks for the mention, Andy!

    I’ve signed up Pop Stumbler and am looking forward to trying it out. The signup process was terribly inconvenient and I wish they didn’t bundle it alongside an opt-in newsletter although it’ll be in their benefit to tap the StumbleUpon crowd.

    I’ve read Tim’s article, which does offer some useful information. He mentioned that StumbleUpon audiences are more likely to bookmark an article on Del.icio.us than Digg users, if I remember correctly..

    Actually I think the reverse might be true. I’m a Stumble User and I rarely bookmark stuff on Del.icio.us because StumbleUpon itself is a bookmarking system, although it might not be as coherent or usable as Del.icio.us.

    To me, Digg is the penultimate social media Midas. Frontpage items are always almost guaranteed heavy bookmarks, traffic, stumbles and most importantly.. links.

  3. says

    Bookmarking was one of the harder aspects to track, primarily because their are so many methods to bookmark a site, in many cases stumblers use their pages on stumbleupon as a bookmarking site. But from the stats more Stumblers bookmarked per 100 visitors then Diggers on almost every site. Their were a couple of exceptions but they were very technical programming site in which the reverse was true, but also the bookmarking rate was up significantly from the other sites.

  4. says

    Hey Andy

    Just found your site through a link at Blog-Op.com. I enjoyed it very much and am adding it to my feeds.

    Scott

  5. says

    That makes sense with converting the traffic from Digg. There seems to be many avenues out there that are just not tapped into. As far as the do-follow epidemic…how long do you think it will last and what do you think will happen to it?

    • says

      THE SMO SMM guys really aren’t tapping into the possibilities of converting traffic, because most are from an SEO background.
      If you come from a marketing background, you are always looking to convert traffic better, because it costs you money, so hopefully we will see more content, and easy solutions, though I am not sure how easy it will be to integrate with wordpress sites running widgets.
      As for dofollow, I will keep plugging away. Things took off that built a little awareness, but ultimately what is needed is information and community.
      The memes added only a few 100 new supporters, when there were already 1000s, and didn’t really help anyone because they only generated relevant links for terms no one is searching for.

  6. says

    Very nice post, thanks for the information.
    Will try to implement it in my blog, hope it will help me to develop more traffic. even more that is :D

  7. says

    Stumbled your Stumble post :-)

    I haven’t spent very much time on Stumble yet to learn the ins and outs, but you provided a very informative read.

    Posts about Digg often make it to popular or home page, but I don’t know enough of Stumble if it works the same there.

    • says

      Thanks Deborah

      I noticed some interesting traffic from StumbleUpon from one of the discussion areas that might constitute group thumbs down. I am actually not sue what effect a large number of thumbs down has on traffic.
      I have a post about Digg just about to be published

  8. says

    Ah, popstumbler is so easily replaced by keyboard short-cuts though (I agree with your assessment that keyboard short-cuts scare the crap out of Average Joe).

    Ctrl-` to stumble
    Home top of page
    End bottom of page
    Ctrl-W close tab
    etc

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