StumbleUpon case study results

by Martin Reed on 24 March 2007 in Snippets

Well it has now been a week since I setup an advertising account for Just Chat over at StumbleUpon. My initial intention was to allow the traffic to flow for a week, and then see how effective the traffic was by comparing it to a benchmark figure for the number of ‘Bounces’ the Just Chat homepage normally receives.

I categorised Just Chat under two categories – forums and matchmaking, and targeted the traffic to UK users only. Unfortunately it would appear that this targeting was too specific as I have received only 199 visits over the course of the week from StumbleUpon.

When compared to the organic traffic that Just Chat receives, it would be impossible to accurately determine the value of the traffic sent by StumbleUpon in terms of the number of homepage ‘Bounces’. Therefore my experiment is inconclusive.

I could adjust the targeting and remove the UK only restriction; however this would not be of particular value to me. The vast majority of advertising on Just Chat is geared towards UK visitors. Sure, I could get the extra traffic by reducing the targeting but this would be of less value as it would be far harder for Just Chat to generate any revenue from them.

So here draws a close to the StumbleUpon experiment – whilst I would certainly recommend the site to advertisers, it would appear that certain targeting conditions are not yet able to send a decent amount of traffic – particularly if you are targeting users from outside North America. It would be easy to get ‘traffic greedy’ and simply switch off the targeting – I know I would get a whole heap of visitors but they would be pretty much worthless.

There is no point advertising or paying for visitors unless those visitors are going to be interested in your site and stick around for more than a few seconds. The key to advertising is to obtain targeted traffic; visitor numbers are one thing, but visitor retention is the key.

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{ 12 comments }

Bollywood October 1, 2007 at 11:32 pm

Interesting results, thank you for sharing.

Martin Reed - Blog Author October 3, 2007 at 8:26 pm

Bollywood – You’re welcome. Have you ever used StumbleUpon as part of your marketing strategy?

Chris October 5, 2007 at 7:12 pm

I haven’t used stumble upon in a couple years, how is the network? is it still a trustworthy/reliable way to find cool new sites, or is it flooded with people advertising or trying to drive traffic to their sites?

I just read about a “traffic” service that pays people to rate stumbleupon sites…

Martin Reed - Blog Author October 6, 2007 at 1:37 pm

Chris – I found StumbleUpon fine for getting traffic, but it wasn’t particularly valuable – particularly if I was targeting traffic from the UK.

A service that pays people to rate sites sounds dodgy to me and is something I would avoid at all costs!

Alberghi October 27, 2007 at 6:08 pm

StumbleUpon can only help you with time to time trafic , because it doesn’t give you PR.

Martin Reed - Blog Author October 29, 2007 at 8:59 pm

Alberghi – I am assuming you mean the traffic is often more temporary, in which case I would agree with you.

Bas December 10, 2007 at 11:48 am

I find SU’s traffic rather unpredictable, I use it for some of my blog posts. Some posts I expect to get a lot of traffic and they get only 15 SU visitors on the day of rating it… others I don’t expect it so much and it gets 800 on the day of rating it.

And it doesn’t have much to do with other people liking it either. It’s from my personal stumbling power.

Martin Reed - Blog Author December 10, 2007 at 5:43 pm

Bas – In this article I was talking about using StumbleUpon for paid advertising. You make a good point though, that SU can often bring great volumes of traffic with minimal effort – just last week an article here was Stumbled, and sent us over 1,000 visitors a day for about four days.

Psychic Ability January 14, 2008 at 10:50 am

Hello again Martin. I want to pick up on the comment Chris made. I too have some experience with the traffic generating site for SU. Not only SU but also for Digg. The site pays 50c for each Digg or Thumbs the member gives for each assignment. For all intents and purposes there is quite a lot of action going on with the site, and at a $10 paypal payout figure, it is quite easy to reach that within days.

The cost for someone wanting the Digg or thumb is $70 a campaign.

I agree it might sound unethical but my point is that there is so much money for a clicker to make that it proves it is a popular service. As to the result for each Digg or SU paid campaign I am not too sure. Maybe it is the satisfaction of having a high traffic read for the day or to be number 1 on Digg’s most popular.

Martin Reed - Blog Author January 18, 2008 at 5:34 pm

Psychic – Thanks for your comment. So does the service you mention successfully get clients onto the front page of Digg for $70? That sounds impressive, although I have always wondered about the long term value offered by getting ‘Dugg’.

Psychic Ability January 18, 2008 at 11:55 pm

Hello Martin, the site states you will get front page. Here is the url for further reading. http://subvertandprofit.com/

Martin Reed - Blog Author January 22, 2008 at 1:53 pm

Psychic – Thanks for the info. I had to remove your affiliate link, as well as the link to the site that guarantees a first place position in Google for your own choice of keyword – such a guarantee is impossible to make.