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How to Draw StumbleUpon Users Into Your Blog

StumbleuponThis is a guest post on How to Draw StumbleUpon Users Into Your Blog is by Skellie who writes tips and tutorials on creating better content at her blog, Skelliewag.org.

The potential for StumbleUpon to send traffic is often under-estimated, particularly by new bloggers. Unlike digg and del.icio.us, an item doesn’t need to become popular before you see immediate results. One or two votes can bring a hundred or more readers — more than a new blog might see in a day.

StumbleUpon users are, however, notoriously fickle. The service describes itself as allowing you to ‘channel-surf the internet’ and I think it’s a very appropriate description. Users flick through websites like you might flick through channels, often making a decision on whether to stay or leave your site before it has even had time to finish loading.

In this post, I want to suggest some quick tips you can use to draw StumbleUpon users into your site before they stumble away.

Channel-surfing the internet

We’ve all flicked through TV channels back and forth, waiting for something to hold our attention. The decision to stay on a channel or surf elsewhere is usually made in a second or two, and the principle is the same for StumbleUpon users.

With so many other potentially great sites available to them at the click of a mouse, you need to make it immediately clear why your site is worth their time. Here are some tips to help you do just that.

1. Make your blog’s core mission-statement unmissable

A core mission-statement as I define it is a one or two sentence description encapsulating what your blog has to offer. A good core mission-statement describes the kind of content you provide and broadly what your blog is about. It should communicate a lot of information in only a few words.

If a stumbler can see straight away your blog is about something they’re interested in then they’re likely to stick around.

2. Insert powerful visual cues

When channel-surfing the decision to stick with a channel or move on is often largely determined by visual cues. Even with the sound off you can tell a drama from a news program, a travel show from a cartoon, because visual elements provide clues as to what kind of show you’re watching.

The same principle applies to blogs. If your blog’s header contains an image of a pile of cash, we can reasonably assume the blog is about money (or making it). That’s a lot of information communicated instantly by a single image.

3. Push your content above the fold

StumbleUpon users often judge a site by what is offered in the above the fold area — the area of your site which appears on screen before any scrolling occurs.

I think this blog is an example of how to do that well. Not only do headlines and the first few paragraphs of a post appear above the fold, but other content of interest is showcased in the header area. StumbleUpon users immediately see a site packed with value.

You can use the top part of your blog’s sidebar, its header area and the post area to showcase your content. In doing so, you’ll straight away show StumbleUpon visitors why they should stick around.

4. Be unique, be pretty

While it’s difficult to judge the quality of a blog’s content in just a few seconds, people are much more hasty with aesthetic judgments. A gorgeous or interesting blog design encourages a stumbler to stick around and see whether the content is great too.

Of course, a great design is a lot of work (or quite a bit of money). The next-best thing is a unique logo or header image, an interesting color scheme, and so on. There are a number of small changes you can make to create a blog that looks unique and sets you apart from the crowd.

What we’ve done

The emphasis in all the above tips is on instantly showing visitors who’ve stumbled across your blog what it has to offer. This should help you make the most of StumbleUpon traffic and turn more stumblers into readers.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
Comments
  1. tumble traffic is`n good!no benefit

  2. I agree, with Jose. Great tips. I’ve tried submitting to StumbleUpon before, but it didn’t work well for me. I’ll retry with Skellie’s tips.

  3. Guys i find stumble good because you can get traffic from a entry over a long period of time not all just on one day like the other news blogs. I have been monitoring a stumble we had for a week or so now over 7 days we have received over 10000 visitors from it now!

  4. guys also i just want to say one more thing if you in video games have a look at n4g i seening good results from them as well

  5. Since I become a blogger I’ve learn so many things.

    Stumble is one of them…

  6. Thanks for the interesting article. I haven’t used stumble upon myself much, but I will definitely learn more about it now.

  7. Oh, I’ll try that. Thanks :)

  8. Sage advice on the focused content delivery of your messaging. We spend a great deal of time staying on focus with our two core themes at Planet Berry. Our clients appreciate the ease of navigation and the depth of our content related to their searches. With our primary focus on health, fitness and wellness we sub divide into Peope and Planet around this core philosophy. Launching in May of this year we have had a slow and steady climb via the right content internally and externally (links) which drive more visibility. Take look when you finish at this fine site: http://www.planetberries.com

  9. Great! This article lies perfectly with the one where Darren talks about doing some small budget advertising with Stumble.

    Thank-you

  10. StumbleUpon has became, in my case, one of the main fonts of traffic to my blog, nice article it helped me too much

  11. I find that StumbleUpon does not get me nearly as much traffic as http://www.thoof.com does. But since my blog covers the automotive industry and StumbleUpon does not have any “interest” channels devoted to cars, this does not really surprise me. I have found though that for posts I’ve submitted to SU that could fit into a category such as marketing, design, finances, or some other more popular channel, I have a great deal more inbound traffic.

  12. I’ve been trying so hard to build readership and I’m still struggling.

    My content delivers exclusively positive comments. I make people laugh. They spit milk through their nose. They laugh till they cry.

    I have great headlines.

    I created a sidebar of excerpts with links in to the original posts.

    I begged–seriously begged–my loyal readers to spread the word.

    Finally, I paid Stumble for 1000 hits.

    I did get a lot of hits from Stumble, but the bounce rate stayed up above 80%.

    I’m at a loss. Somebody give me the magic bullet which. I know, doesn’t exist. But still. Can I get the magic bullet?

    Death By Children
    http://deathbykids.blogspot.com

  13. I think you missed the point though.
    Stumbleupon works by how many stumbles you do.

    For example, you want to stumble 3000 pages than you’d get about 300 visitors to your stumbles(or your site).

    I think I can do a guest post on this if Darrent let’s me do this…

    check out http://zedomax.stumbleupon.com

    I have so many stumbles that I can’t even stumble under my account because the database of Stumbleupon slows down when you reach about 100K stumbles…

  14. The simple answer is to stumble “OTHER” people’s pages 24/7. If you only stumble your pages, the chances are that no matter how great your page or website looks, NOONE will visit you.

    BUT if you stumble many “OTHER” pages, you will get traffic even if you have mediocre content.

  15. stumble it’s a very good resource. I received about 12 000 visitor in just one day

  16. SU has been proven to be a major source of traffic.
    My tech blog has been no exception. But traffic could always be better!

  17. Great tips. I am currently trying to devise the best strategy for combining digg, stumbleupon, technorati, and del.icio.us into one cohesive social networking strategy for promoting your blog. Has anyone else tried to work on a similar project who might bet willing to work together? I’m finding my tracking tools are a bit primitive so I’m wanting an upgrade. Any suggestions?

    FYI, I’ve come up with a neat little trick on how to get high rankings on google searches using these services already. I call it F.T.T. for Fast Targeted Traffic. I would love it if any one you would review it..
    http://u-m-g.blogspot.com/2007/10/how-do-i-get-more-traffic-to-my-website.html

    Thanks

  18. Great tips. I hve been surfing and reading a lot about Social book marking in the internet and I see stumbleupon is a good social book marking site and tips for driving traffic from them make this blog extra ordinary.
    Chat Place

  19. nice tips… thanks. keep up the good work :)

  20. I went over to check out StumbleUpon and just get a bit confused about the site. My first impression is that I can submit items I come across to the site, yet as I log in, I don’t see how I can do that (I think along the lines of Digg’s ease of use) and, no pun intended, I stumble around the profile, some of the links for me to look at other stubling users, etc.

    Is this site based on my own profile and how I populate it or is it a suggestive site like Digg?

    Well, after reading all the contribution comments to this post, it seems a bit more clear to me.

    The marketing aspect of the world of blogging is mind boggling, but may be worth it in the long run!

    Thanks everyone – Bruce Simmons

  21. After read this post, i try to submit to stumbleupon. As result, my new blog got huge traffic from stumbleupon! boost from zero to 500-700 pages view! Greattt!!

  22. My thoughts about SU have changed in the last few months since I started using it. At first it was enjoyable to have the traffic spikes but then it became clear that this was a transient effect with little value in terms of blog growth. So I started building a “blog” there and meeting people who dropped by. I collected some really good photos and put them up. Now it is much more rewarding to just exchange greetings with someone I do not know and get to know them. It is so easy to do there.
    I have noticed is my stats that some SU readers do come to my weblog. This fits in well with my strategy for long term growth and success. It’s not as exciting but it is more satisfying.

  23. I’ve tried SU for a couple of days the result is not that big but hey atleast i get 3 – 15 hits from SU :-) maybe ill try to implement some of the method you listed, thanks anyway.

  24. great tips – we have been using stumbleupon now for several months – but it still seems a bit of a mystery. Thanks for helping to remove some of that mystery.

  25. I must have reached the maximum limit of SU for promoting one’s blog and now they want me to pay $0.05 per click. Is there a work around it?

  26. I have been submitting some of blog’s more interesting content to Stumble for the past 2 months or so. I initially saw a spike in traffic that lasted a few days, but then pegged off.

    After that point I submitted many more high quality posts, but have seen little or no SU traffic.

    Key point: Stumble brings fickle traffic. Traffic the may seem great on paper, but doesn’t necessarily equal more revenue!!

  27. I agree with you cyberst0rm. I’ve seen the exact same spike then drop off. Now, it doesn’t matter how many great sites I stumble and write detailed reviews for, I just don’t get much traffic.

    If anyone has figured out a way around this (I bet it is to use their paid advertising), it would make an excellent and popular blog post!

  28. Are there ways to segment the market with this service? At Planet Berry we focus on health and wellness topics ranging from the Planet to the Population. Thus, we are more visible to searches looking specifically for leading edge articles and views on these topics.

    Thanks

  29. The retention rate would be a terrific way to determine overall success of these unique traffic plays. Hard to determine success unless you can trap stats that show the overall performance. It may not be dollars associated here but time is money.

  30. Great advice! I think it helps if you ask yourself what keeps you on a web page yourself, and it’s much easier to be attracted to images than to text. Many people skim through web pages, and speed read, so anything that holds attention should always be born in mind.

  31. I am new to blogging. I’ve been reading , and implementing these tips , which I am finding useful. I want to get to the point of having it become a source of income. However , I am finding this to be more fun than I anticipated. Sharing my pizza skills , with the world , has put so much zeal into my step. Why do so many people think it is wrong to comment on a blog , if you write a blog? Don’t other musicians got to each others concerts? I’m gonna keep filming my shows , and Vlogging away , with help from this great resource. Thanks.

  32. Good tips, stumbleupon has not worked out all that bad for my blog so far.

  33. Many useful tips, thanks

  34. Im still trying to get some luck with StumbleUpon. Im still new in blogging and your advice are really helpful.

  35. I’ve had great success with StumbleUpon. Something you should keep in mind is to Stumble your best posts, if you’ve got some posts that are more for filler content, don’t bother with those. You want stumbleupon visitors to only see your best content.

    Also, if you plan on changing your url schema, hold off on Stumbling any pages as the urls would no longer be valid after you implement SEF urls.

  36. Thanks for the advice , Jon Ward. I will save that one in my e-mail , as I watch this , and continue to develope my plans to implement Stumbleupon.

  37. Stumbleupon should definitely not be overlooked – in the last four months it has brought my site – The List Universe – 365,841 visits – making it my second largest provider of links from external sources.

  38. I had amazing success with stumbleupon, I went from 20 visitors a day to thousands a day to http://www.mindfeck.info, and different posts were stumbled. For some reason, my traffic completely disappeared lately. Any idea why that would happen?

  39. I’m a huge fan of SU, and am channel surfing daily :). This is a good post, I especially agree with point #2.

  40. Great advice. I just signed up at SU. Hope to get some traffic and exposure soon.

  41. I’ve SUed one of my recent posts on http://apple.qoody.net just for curiosity. Got about 120 visitors same day, and probably will get another 100 today.

    Sometimes I discover a jump in my stats for some of the older posts on http://blogs.qoody.net that comes from SU also.

    I believe if used wisely SU can be a great source of traffic for a long run.

  42. Thanks for this article. My SU use has greatly benefited from this advice. I wouldn’t call myself a Power User or Top Stumbler, but I have begun networking more, and learning how to use this tool to benefit a lot of other blogs, including my own. This has also helped me learn to format my articles better. Thanks!

  43. Darren, thank you for the explanation of StumbleUpon. I see the similarity between changing channels on TV. I know it’s not easy to build a successful readership, but with the tips you provide, the learning curve will be reached much quicker. I’m glad I StumbledUpon Problogger!

  44. I had a question here. I try to submitting my own article, but when i login to my page and look into the “Page discovered”, i can’t found my article. But there was no problem when i submit other article. Can anyone explain this? Thanks.

  45. Excellent tips for stumble upon users!

  46. very interesting. need some more good stumbleupon traffic.

  47. This is very good advice. I am trying it out as I am typing, thank you very much for these tips. My blog will now hopefully get more traffic, and more devoted viewers.

  48. hi

    a good post.

    many more new sites like su have also come up like say fleck,netvouz etc.

  49. Well I have to say that I am impressed with SU and thanks to ProBlogger I stumbled into it. Great looking potential and found some solid networking leads as well.

  50. I have officially stumbled into a stumbleupon post!

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