The New StumbleUpon – Likes and Dislikes

StumbleUpon LogoToday, I decided to use the “Click here and try the new StumbleUpon” feature to see the changes that are coming to StumbleUpon. You can find this at the top of any page within the StumbleUpon site once you are logged in, and don’t worry – until the changeover is permanent, you can still go to the Settings page within the new layout and switch back to the old look and feel if you are “missing” something. You can also go back and forth between the old and new interface by bookmarking the StumbleUpon Switch link.

Now granted, the beta / trial site may not have all of the features fully functional yet, but as far as what I have seen so far, here are some of my major likes and dislikes, plus a few debunked rumors.

URL Review Page

The review page for URL’s has changed. You can now see a view count (or the number of times people have clicked on the link from StumbleUpon) and all of the people who have thumbed up the page, as opposed to the old interface that just showed a selection of the recent Stumblers who favorited it.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
The old review page vs. the new one

Subscribers, Subscriptions and Friends

I have read a variety of different comments where people have assumed their friends will automatically be converted to mutual subscribers. This is not true (or if it is, it hasn’t happened yet). Whenever you switch over to the new StumbleUpon, you will notice that you only have a certain number of subscribers and subscriptions, and unless all of your previous friends have subscribed to you, then you will see a discrepancy between the numbers. In the old interface, I have 489 friends, whereas in the new interface, I have 336 subscriptions and 324 subscribers. You will find your subscriptions and subscribers under the new Stumblers tab. Mutual connections are marked with a double arrow (New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes), similar to the one Twitter Karma uses to show mutual Twitter followers.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
Stumbler subscriptions

Also missing from the new StumbleUpon test site are pending friend requests. The New StumbleUpon FAQ says you can handle them in the same way as before, but I have yet to find them in the new site. So I guess if you have some, add them and then send them the now famous “Subscribe to mine and I’ll subscribe to yours” message.

Meeting New Stumblers

In the new StumbleUpon, under your Stumblers tab, you will find Visitors, Suggestions and Recent. Visitors shows Stumblers who have visited your profile, along with the arrows to show if they are mutual connections. Suggestions show similar Stumblers, with a simple Subscribe button under each user description. If you subscribe to them from this screen, it will automatically select the accept shares to your toolbar option for those Stumblers. Recent shows Stumblers recently active on StumbleUpon, also with the arrows to show if they are mutual connections or not.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
Suggested Stumblers

Also, when you click on a tag in the Discover tab of the new interface, you will see a list of people who like that tag. So, say, you’re a WordPress theme developer. Check out all of the people who like items tagged with WordPress themes for a group of Stumblers interested in what you have to offer.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
Stumblers who like particular tags

Finally, when you are on a profile of a Stumbler, instead of the common interests bubble, there is a We Both Like link that will show you pages that you have both favorited. Also, underneath the Subscribe button on the Stumbler’s profile, there is a link in the new interface to Meet Another Stumbler, which takes you to a random Stumbler’s profile, which is usually someone you have at least one We Both Like item in common.

The StumbleUpon Inbox

In the old interface, you can find your inbox messages, recent shares and pending friend requests. In the new site, the inbox is just the inbox with new messages and nothing more. I will miss the recent shares options, as sometimes I accidentally double-click on my new shares number in the toolbar and skip over a page, or the page wouldn’t load and I would move onto the next one, then check my recent shares later on to get that missed page.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
The old StumbleUpon inbox vs. the new one

Update: Recent Shares in the new interface is under the Discover tab as shares. Thanks Alistair!

Sharing

Sharing in the new StumbleUpon will not be as effortless as in the old interface. In the old version, you can share anything with anyone who accepts your friend request, whereas in the new version, you can only share things with subscribers. Whenever someone subscribes to you, they have to check the option to accept shares to their toolbar. Subscriptions made before the changeover in the old interface will automatically have this option checked, but after that point, you could have subscribers that are opting not to receive your shares.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
Subscribers have the option to accept shares

Also, unlike the friend request, I am not sure that anything will notify someone that you have subscribed to them, so if you hope to make a mutual connection, you will have to send them a separate message to let them know you would like them to subscribe to you too.

Finally, the ability to check all of your subscribers to receive a share is no longer available. Instead, you have to click on each subscriber individually to select them to receive your share. This should hopefully cut down on the StumbleUpon spamming that has been rampant recently, as people will have to click through their subscribers one by one for each share, making it much more time consuming. At the same time, it will make it painful for those who are just sharing one thing to hundreds of subscribers.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
The old way of sharing vs. the new one

Tags and Searching

This is a feature I have been waiting for, but doesn’t quite work as well as I was hoping. In the new StumbleUpon, you can search through only your favorites, as well as your friends’ favorites. While I had hoped it would search through the page / article titles of favorites, it only seems to search through the tags. For example, if I have favorited 10 articles on Facebook, but only tagged 3 of them as Facebook, only those 3 will show up in my search.

The tag cloud is now gone, replaced by a dropdown list of your tags. This would be a little nicer if it was organized alphabetically as opposed to by the number of items you have for a particular tag.

New Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes
The old tag cloud vs. the new dropdown

Your StumbleUpon Profile URL

StumbleUpon user profile URL’s are changing from yourusername.stumbleupon.com to www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/yourusername/. They are automatically forwarding to the new profile URL in the new interface.

More on Upcoming StumbleUpon Changes

For more on the upcoming StumbleUpon changes, check out the following articles:

Subscribe to Kikolani on StumbleUpon

If you want to share Stumbles with me, be sure to subscribe to Kikolani on StumbleUpon and send me a message so I can subscribe back and get your shares too. The Fetching Friday resources are pulled from my StumbleUpon favorites weekly!

Your Thoughts on the New StumbleUpon

Have you tried the new StumbleUpon? What are your likes and dislikes?

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Comments

  1. says

    Definitely a case of pluses and minuses. I am generally pretty open to change and improvements but this may be a case of two steps forward and four steps back. I used the new version for a few days and went back to the old version.

    I think SU could have done a better job of communicating the changes and how the older version maps to the new version. I do like some of the “look” of the new version but there were a number of UI elements in the older version that seemed more intuitive. Guess I’ll get used to it over time.
    .-= Mike´s last blog ..Microsoft Windows 7 Release Insights =-.

  2. says

    As always, thank you for the overview – your review of the changes is far more detailed than others I’ve seen, and I’m actually curious to know what features you think would make Stumbleupon more powerful for social and promotion purposes.

    I’ve actually made friends – real friends – via Stumble. I think a lot of the people who add me or send me messages out of the blue without any real concern for what they’re sending are missing something basic: if you actually communicate with a real user on Stumble, ask them something about a recent stumble or one of their interests, that goes a long, long way.
    .-= ashok´s last blog ..Thomas Jefferson to William Ludlow: Monticello, Sept. 6, 1824 =-.

  3. rituraj says

    This is a deep analysis of Stumbleupon. Kristy is power stumbler and has indepth knowledge on SU.
    In my opinion SU will loose users as the new interface requires more technical knowlege. Still a lot of improvement is required to make it more userfriendly.

  4. says

    Hi Kristi,
    I really like the way youve explained every little change that has come upon SU. I do so love SU….but now, after all the changes…i dont really know. I guess it will take some getting used to. I dont want to abandon using it, cause i have met some lovely friends through it. Here’s hoping the new SU is going to get better after all the tweaks they claim to be doing :)
    I’m heading over to subscribe to you…come and subscribe to me too.
    Thanks.
    .-= Zeenat{Positive Provocations}´s last blog ..Strength, Courage and Wisdom =-.

  5. says

    Good job Kristi. There’s bound to be some adjustments for us to do after the newly launched SU interface. Think the most critical would be the subscription issue as it’s not automatically transferred. A change is still good, after a few months we may grow accustomed to everything again. ^^ Stumbled!

    @wchingya
    Social/Blogging Tracker

  6. says

    SU is not that much famous as that of Digg and Facebook, don’t know the reason but crowd will surely rush to area where more and more mass are gathered.

  7. says

    A really great review Kristi.
    My list of likes/dislikes
    I like:
    1. the new searching feature.
    2. the new look is amazing and minimilastic.

    I don’t like:
    1. the view count which not as good as the stumbles only.
    2. I prefer the sharing feature too, the recent shares are good.

    I liked the idea odf usingtags to findaudience for your blog.
    .-= gautam hans´s last blog ..Tips to increase comments on your blog =-.

  8. says

    I have only used the new version a couple of times and was perplexed by some of the changes that were made. I’m not clear if that can be attributed to being resistant to change or if the changes are simply not ones I consider to be useful to me. Your very thorough review will be extremely helpful as over the course of the next short while I’ll try the new version and determine how I feel about all the changes. Thanks for sharing your attention to detail I appreciate it.
    .-= timethief´s last blog ..Six free comment tracking services for bloggers =-.

  9. says

    I’ve been wondering how to use StumbleUpon for a few weeks, so I guess I’ll just use the new version from now on. I like how many websites aren’t alienating their followers with drastic overnight shifts to new versions of their site. Allowing users to gently learn the new system, while still having access to their previous versions is a solid strategy.

  10. says

    I used to be pretty big on using SU but since Twitter took off I haven’t really had that much time for it. To be honest, I can see it slowly dying out – much like Digg :P

  11. says

    I came here via http://onecoolsite.wordpress.com/2009/10/24/the-new-stumbleupon-a-review and your explanation is really clear.

    I have been using Stumbleupon for a while and yet never have never felt I really knew my way around {maybe too many other things to think about or maybe just mystified}. So this post is a real service.

    I also use Su.pr and I am never quite sure how it and Stumbleupon play together.

    I know that when I review a site on su.pr it turns up in Stumbleupon and it gets pageviews, but it is all still a bit of a mystery to me, and I wonder what your ideas are on how Stumbleupon and Su.pr work together?

  12. says

    I think the change is like anything, it takes sometime to get used to. I think once I have had a few months using it everything will be natural. I have to say that my general stumble usage has slowed significantly due to the high bounce rates that come with the traffic.
    .-= SEO wizz´s last blog ..Do Blog Directories Help SEO? =-.

  13. says

    SEO wizz,

    What is your reason for slowing your stumble usage?

    I wonder whether it is because you think a high bounce rate from Stumbleupon affects Google’s opinion of a site’s value?

    I move through sites pretty quickly, even ones I like, when I am stumbling. I would have thought that Google recognizes this, but maybe not?

    As someone who submits posts from my own site to Stumble (via su.pr) I am interested in traffic and specifically traffic that finds its way on to other pages of my site apart from the one I have directed traffic to via su.pr.

  14. says

    RE: StumbleUpon Bounce Rate

    @ SEO Wizz, @David — I have also found that most visitors from StumbleUpon are the “one page and bounce” type of traffic with very few visitors viewing more than a single page. I have a post on SU, “30 Firefox Keyboard Shortcuts” that has driven over 30,000 visitors from SU to my site yet most visits are single page visits of very short duration.

    While on one hand this makes your gross traffic numbers look good, it significantly increases your bounce rate and decreases your pages per visit number and the time on site number.

    One other point about this type of traffic is that it delivers very little sales or conversion traffic. So from my experience and from other things I have read about SU traffic, the extra visits provide very little benefit for monetization, click through or sales.
    .-= Mike´s last blog ..Windows 7 – Eight Reasons You Will Want It =-.

  15. says

    Yeah, I’m with you on the whole “new StumbleUpon” UI. Some of it I like quite a bit, but I do think it’s gonna be harder to make “connections” because of the “opt-in” instead of “opt-out” direction.

    It’s good if you don’t want a bunch of spammers connecting with you, but bad if you’re trying to market something.
    .-= Your Photo Tips´s last blog ..Essential Gear for the Beginning DSLR Photographer =-.

  16. says

    I don’t understand how to do some really basic tasks with SU, or perhaps I just can’t do them.

    For example, I am getting some traffic on my WordPress.com blog from SU. When I click the link that appears in my referrers list, I get a page that says “Your page is on SU…create campaign”. But what I really want to find out is – what page has been submitted, who submitted it and who viewed it.

    Alternatively, I just want to search SU by my post title but I don’t see where I can do that.

    Can you give me a hand?