If you have a blog, you should be active on StumbleUpon. You should also encourage your friends and readers to be active on StumbleUpon as well.
What is StumbleUpon? Well I recommend reading their very informative About Us page first, because really my explanation would not do it justice. Simply put, it is a window to the best and the brightest on the web…and that’s exactly where you want to be.
Here are my top ten reasons why every blogger should have an active StumbleUpon account:
- Inspiration-As you stumble along you’ll find things that horrify you, delight you, and make you think. All good things for a blogger. To write, you must have inspiration. StumbleUpon can give you excellent ideas for your own blog.
- Support-The more you stumble, the more weight your stumbles carry. This can really help out your friends. If you see a great post that you know others would love to read…you can submit it to StumbleUpon and your friend gets new eyes on their site. There’s no actual proof of this, but the more often you discover (not just thumbs up/down) great content, the more weight it seems that your stumbles carry. We’re all friends here in the blogging world, pass some blog love around by stumbling posts that you enjoy!
- Self Promotion (to an extent…)-Be careful with this one. If you stumble a disproportionate amount of your own blog, your stumbles will start carrying NO weight. In fact, I’ve even heard that they won’t allow you to stumble your own content if you do it too much. So be cautious with this and stumble other people’s stuff MUCH more then you stumble your own. Still, when you write that post that you just know the world needs to see…submit it yourself and give it a little boost!
- Education-I’ve learned so much about so many different things by stumbling on a regular basis. More about things that I am interested in and things that I never knew I could be interested in.
- Power-After you’ve been an active stumbler for awhile, it’s exciting to watch the power your stumbles can carry. Sending someone you admire or respect a flood of traffic feels really awesome.
- Enjoyment-It’s just fun! I’ve found sites on StumbleUpon that have kept me laughing for over an hour. I’m not kidding.
- To be more well rounded-If you write a niche site (like I do), sometimes you feel like all you ever think about is one narrow topic. Not only can you feel incredibly limited, you also might get bored! Stumble around and see how people present content in new and different ways and you just might get a spark of inspiration.
- To open your mind-We all live in our own little corners. We all have preconceived notions of the world around us. Stumbling can open your mind to possibilities, ideas and theories that you never even considered. It can strengthen your resolve on topic A, and make you see things from another perspective on topic B. Having our fundamental beliefs challenged is good for the soul.
- Link Juice-This kind of plays into #5 and #3. The combination of stumbling other people’s content and your own spreads the link juice around. Always a good (actually great) thing.
- Traffic-Become part of the community of StumbleUpon and watch the traffic come to you. StumbleUpon is my 2nd biggest referral site to my blog (after Facebook, love you guys!). While there is a pretty high bounce rate for StumbleUpon visits…I definitely do retain a fair amount of visitors.
I currently have 565 favorites on StumbleUpon and I’ve made 166 discoveries. I can only imagine over time my stumbles will carry more and more weight. It does help that I have the StumbleUpon extension installed on Google Chrome. Anytime I get writers block, or I’m bored…I simply stumble!
Things to remember when stumbling:
- If you discover something, please take the time to make sure you put it into the right categories! If someone were to stumble this post and put in it food/cooking…well it wouldn’t rate very highly. People who were specifically stumbling food/cooking would be disappointed by a post not categorized properly. Take the time to find the right fit for your stumble.
- Most bloggers have a StumbleUpon button on their blog (mine are on the bottom of each post). The little blue and green SU circle. If you don’t want to install the toolbar, you can usually still stumble their posts without an issue right from the post itself.
- Share the love. Please remember that StumbleUpon is about being an active member of the internet. You will not get ahead by constantly self promoting. Trust me, when I first started on StumbleUpon I stumbled my own stuff ALL.THE.TIME and didn’t get a lick of traffic. I stopped and started spreading the love and now it’s my second biggest referral site!
What has your experience been with StumbleUpon?