StumbleUpon may not be the biggest social network kicking around (just 13million users compared to Facebook’s 500million), but back in January Statcounter released some stats suggesting that StumbleUpon actually drives more traffic to external websites than Facebook, despite its relatively small user base.
I was recently promoting a blog post by Gartoo on StumbleUpon about how men and women disagree on what makes a home a happy place and I thought I’d run a little experiment – to compare the results of Facebook Ads vs. StumbleUpon Ads.
I set up an identical advert on StumbleUpon and Facebook with similar targeting options promoting the blog post. I allocated £40 budget to each platform and watched the analytics and insights to compare the differences between the two social advertising channels.
StumbleUpon Sent Ten Times As Much Traffic Than Facebook for the Same Cost
Using fairly standard Facebook targeting options my average cost per click was £0.75. Stumbleupon on the other hand charged a cost per click of £0.07, which could have been even cheaper had I not paid an extra £0.03 per click for location targeting!
For a £40 budget Facebook sent 53 visits.
For a £40 budget StumbleUpon sent 645 visits.
StumbleUpon traffic was higher quality than Facebook
This has a lot to do with targeting options, but based on the metrics in Google Analytics the StumbleUpon traffic appears to be far more engaged with the content than Facebook visits.
Both sources had a very high bounce rate (to be expected for a blog post), but Facebook visits seemed to have an average time on site of 0 seconds, suggesting that they were not happy to be leaving Facebook.com to read a blog post.
StumbleUpon on the other hand, had an average time on site of 33 seconds, suggesting that the visitors were more engaged than those from Facebook.
Stumbleupon delivered traffic faster than Facebook
Even with identical targeting options, Facebook only delivered on average 4 visits a day (although getting 10,000 impressions a day on average). StumbleUpon on the other hand sent approximately 100 visits a day. This means that StumbleUpon took just 5 days, compared to Facebook which took approximately 13 days to use up the budget.
The sample size of this experiment is small and results are going to vary based on the topic of the post, how interesting it is, time of the day, and many other variables that have not been taken into consideration. However, I think it’s fair to assume that StumbleUpon is underrated as a traffic generation tool – maybe not for sending qualified leads, but for sending bloggers looking for cool content to write about it’s awesome, and inexpensive compared to other popular social advertising systems.