Thursday, 3 November 2011

The Lifecycle Of Links On Social Sites [Infographic]

Just 2 months ago, we were discussing here how StumbleUpon passed Facebook as a traffic generator and how it represents more than 50% of the total social media traffic.
That had a lot of different reactions, most people agreed that while StumbleUpon can generate more hits than the other social sites, the quality of that traffic is much lower. Some people don’t like one traffic referral negatively affecting the overall numbers when they look at their analytics.
Today, StumbleUpon comes back with more of those interesting facts, this time through a beautiful infographic designed by Column Five. Let’s take a look at the possible takeaways here:
First, let’s get passed those stats that talk about how big the service really is, 2.2 million pages added every month, 51 pages per minute, and the chart about how much traffic each social site generates.
What happens after 24 hours?
  • Twitter moves at a speed that no other social service can, that also means that the lifecycle of a link is very short, it dies almost immediately. If you pay attention to how many people retweets you after 24 hours of posting a link, you’ll notice this is rare.
  • Facebook moves much slower and people share significantly fewer updates/links. You can still see some reshares and even comments on something you posted the day before.
  • If you pay attention to your StumbleUpon counter, you’ll notice that it does not move much on the first day but it starts growing after that. In my own experience, I’ve seen posts grow faster in numbers after a few days.
The other interesting data in the infographic is the visualization of the half-life of a link. This is basically showing you how in 2.8 hours your link has already reached half of the engagement it will ever get on Twitter, in other words, at this point you pretty much know what’s the potential for the other half.
SU claims a link has barely reached half of its life cycle after 400 hours. That’s impressive.
What I’d like to take away from this
Is StumbleUpon better than Facebook or Twitter? No, it’s different. Should you take that traffic? Absolutely. I believe in getting the number of tools you use on the Internet to a bare minimum, specially when your real focus should be your three-dimensional business, but SU is very much still in the toolbox.


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