How To Get More Referral Traffic: Pinterest vs. StumbleUpon

April 26, 2012

Pinterest, How To, Stumble Upon

Pinterest Is All The Rage, As Of This Writing

People are motivated to visit blogs from Pinterest by one thing only: Image Quality

When it comes to referral traffic let’s remember, every action in liking, re-pinning and sharing in Pinterest is visually-driven. Recipes, kittens in coffee cups, hot infographics, and inebriated people removing themselves from the gene pool – along with brilliant photographic and video work will get seen, shared (read: lifted and “repinned” to others’ boards) and make you the cat’s meow in Pinterest.

Seldom Discussed Pinterest Fact

Pinterest Is Hardly New. Private beta invites went out in the beginning of March, 2010.

I think it’s just a matter of how long I’ve been using Pinterest and perhaps the OsakaSaul name that people have “seen around” that has caused me to collect likes, repins and a slew of followers within Pinterest.

I have been kicking their tires for nearly two years, and while they’re gotten flashy, I would love to see them be more thoughtful to the user in their user experience.

My ideas for just the most obvious Pinterest UX improvements:

  • Close windows after we’ve liked/shared
  • Let us multi-share with boxes to tick, rather than having us repeat steps
  • Provide us with us more condensed view options – so we can get more done with a lot less scrolling

For me, words are my strength.  Article titles drive traffic from many sources, and terms, or ‘keywords’ within the body of posts draws natural search traffic.  A couple Google Analytics screenshots should speak volumes.

For referral traffic, or page views, StumbleUpon is still doing it for me, with 1,095 page views in the last 30 days (just 4 new articles published in that time), and Pinterest, where I have had an account and boards for about two years, does not even make the top 25.

Also, note the 1.19 page visits (means some people see other pages after the one they came to see, once on my blog) and an average stay of 58 seconds:

Where do I find Pinterest within Google Analytics?  39th place – seven visits in 30 days.

Seven visits, thanks to my six boards in Pinterest and dozens of images, most of which lead to  While the Time on site of 10:13 and 3.57 average pages viewed would look glorious, I’m not buying it:

  1. The sample is too small – just seven visits to my blog from Pinterest, so, I’m guessing that one or more people left their computer on and the browser showing my blog and did other things for an hour or so – before closing the browser or going elsewhere on the internet;
  2. My own wife would not listen to me for 10:13 at a time (or read 3.57 of my writing) – even when we were still dating, and she still felt compelled to pretend to take interest in what I had to say.

If you, too, are not using breathtaking images, infographics, or showcasing the People of Walmart in original and shocking ways…

How To Get More Referral Traffic From Stumble Upon

  1. Follow people you know, to start, but understand that it will take some time to understand how they are going to use StumbleUpon. I get better and better at looking at a Stumbler’s number of likes, the recency of likes and what they like – and decide if the Stumbler is going to appreciate what I share to them, perhaps “SU-like” on occasion, and maybe not share tons of odd stuff to me.
  2. Every couple days, from Profile > Connections > Visitors, from the pull-down menu, see who you don’t already know (they could be people you are already connected to who simply looked at your likes most recently), and see what their stats tell you.  What do they like? How often, and when was the last time they shared content? Follow (or don’t) wisely; you can only follow 500 people in StumbleUpon.
  3. Review your own post, and also go through your blog circle, etc. and SU-like your supporting bloggers’ latest posts. The first review on a page is the StumbleUpon “Discovery Review” – and counts the most for StumbleUpon SEO.  StumbleUpon allows you to add as many tags as you like, but actually uses the first five you provide. These, multiplied by the number of likes you have on the page, once reviewed, increase the likelihood that your page will appear “randomly” before Stumblers who are Stumbling their followed topics.
  4. For reviews on your own posts/pages – or any that you want to be sure get in front of many Stumblers’ eyes – test your tags in the StumbleUpon “Explore Box,” which suggests acceptable StumbleUpon topics from words and phrases that you input.

If your content is not particularly visually dynamic and/or if you are seeing far better referral traffic results, please share what you are doing differently.

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Pinterest For Business Book

If you want to learn more how to use Pinterest in your business check out Pinterest For Business Made Easy from Kim Castleberry. [Yep, you guessed it, it is an affiliate link. Still, the book is actually very good!]

[image credit: photostock]

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About Saul Fleishman

Saul Fleischman is working with social web apps developers on getting things made: my role tends to be functionality ideation, user experience, and also, marketing communications and community development.

View all posts by Saul Fleishman

5 Responses to “How To Get More Referral Traffic: Pinterest vs. StumbleUpon”

  1. KrisOlin Says:

    Hey Saul, and thanks for a great article on referral traffic! Funny enough I just checked out SMR referral stats from Google Analytics and my top three are Twitter, Facebook and… Pinterest! On my Pinterest account  I’ve got currently 60 followers. All I do is basically just pin the main image of the articles, and then like and/or repin some other stuff from other people. 


  2. Mike Says:

    I love pinterest, we recently started a blog and have had amazing success posting articles on pinterest.  Thanks for the info.


    • Saul Fleischman Says:

      Thanks, @1da4d9bb6e59cbb56cbe0277392afaf2:disqus Bothe Pinterest and StumbleUpon are important, yes.  @krisolin:disqus does way better than I do with visits generated from Pinterest; his choice of visuals is better, this is the difference.


  3. 7hobbytoy Says:

    I have been on SU for more than one month, and I have not found it is helpful to me. But I will continue..


  4. how to get fast easy followers on instagram Says:

    You really make it appear so easy with your presentation however I in finding this topic to be really one thing that I think I’d by no means understand.
    It sort of feels too complicated and very huge for me. I’m looking forward for your next put up, I’ll attempt to get the hang of it!


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