Stumble and Be Stumbled

If you are not familiar with StumbleUpon (now Mix), let me just clue you in. It’s basically a social website where readers can find new and interesting information that they may have never would have found before.  People rate each post with a thumbs up or thumbs down and have the chance to put their 2 cents in about the post. You can also use it as a bookmarking tool. And it’s free!

I’ve been fortunate enough to get a few posts stumbled lately and it has given me a huge increase in traffic, as well as, subscribers.  It has only been in the last few weeks that I have really begun to learn and understand the whole stumbling phenomenon.  I finally downloaded the toolbar and I’m glad I did.  It has been super handy and much easier to stumble a post that doesn’t offer the stumble link otherwise.

You simply click on the thumbs up to stumble a post.  If it has already been stumbled, it will turn green.  If the post hasn’t been stumbled, a box will pop-up with the post url and a place for you to put in your review about the post.  You can either add your own thoughts here or paste an excerpt from the post.  That’s it!  If you want to see if your site or post has been reviewed, you can find out here.  Just type in your main url or any url of your choosing.  If you have been reviewed, you will see something like this.

As you can see, I typed in the url to my standmixer contest and this is what came up.  As you can see, it has been reviewed, in fact, 4 pages of reviews.  This means people stumbled my post and, by the looks of it, gave it a thumbs up.

Why would you want your post stumbled?

The number one reason is traffic.  You are pretty much guaranteed a huge increase in traffic.  By getting traffic, you gain potential subscribers/a loyal reader base/customers.  Nobody wants to own a blog with no readers.  It defeats the whole purpose of blogging in my opinion.  If you need more reasons, you can read a whole list of them that should get you motivated.

Keeping your readers coming back is the hard part.

  • Many factors will affect whether your visitors will come back including your blog design.  It’s just like in real life folks, first impressions only come once and according to some people, you only have 4 seconds to impress.
  • Ad display can be a huge factor as well.  Ads that don’t properly blend or that over-take your blog can turn people off instantly.  Try to keep a section that is only for ads and if you choose to have adsense, PLEASE make them blend in!
  • ALWAYS offer a way to subscribe and a link that explains RSS.  Many, many people have no clue what feeds are and they work.  You may also want to consider using the  What Would Seth Godin do WordPress Plugin to encourage new visitors to subscribe.
  • You’ve heard it before, BRANDING.  Creating a unique logo or having a unique theme that makes you stand out can easily keep your blog on reader’s minds.
  • The ever so famous, CONTENT is the big one that will bite you in the butt so make sure you have quality and sploggy content.

It’s really important to update your StumbleUpon profile, add friends, and join different networks.  This can factor in big time when more regular stumblers come across your post.  Keep stumbling and get stumbled.  Don’t stumble yourself though or you risk the chance of getting booted!

Don’t forget.  You can stumble posts in ANY topic—recipes, contests, blogging tips, PHOTOS, news, politics, and more!  Now sign up, get the toolbar, and start stumbling.