Posted October 1, 2008 5:31 pm by with 26 comments

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Maybe the big change coming for StumbleUpon last month wasn’t a change in ownership after all. While rumors of eBay’s planned sale of the website-discovery toolbar have yet to be confirmed, StumbleUpon has come out with a few big changes this week.

Originally designed as a toolbar that delivers recommended pages in your specified areas of interest, StumbleUpon has seen great popularity. It even had a decent revenue model: selling some of those pageviews for a nickel a pop. ClickZ reports that one out of every 20 to 30 pages stumbled is a paid inclusion. But the toolbar may soon be a thing of the past for all users.

But now you don’t need the toolbar to stumble: StumbleUpon is launching, according to RWW, an alternative way for new visitors to use the service without signing up. The download-free version will be accessible from their website. In addition,

It’s also ushering in a partner program to allow individual Web sites to offer StumbleUpon on their properties. That program launches this fall with four partners:,, National, and Rolling

Called Property StumbleThru, the new service will work within sites, serving up popular pages at random (or according to a user’s interests). HowStuffWorks and HuffPo launch the service today:
howstuffworks project stumblethru, i think

StumbleUpon will also ramp up its current ad sales efforts and offerings with a larger staff. The new staff will help advertisers target their stumblers better, including:

making recommendations on specific categories where an advertiser’s content may do well. (Most StumbleUpon advertisers are media and entertainment companies.) Improved analytics will show how that content is being received.

As TechCrunch noted when it reported of the sales rumors, StumbleUpon has six million registered users—but its popularity has waned over time, with worldwide visitors in July down 70% over the same month in 2007. Will this be enough to save the service?

  • Utah SEO Pro

    I hope this increases use of SU since they have such increased submission.

    Utah SEO Pro’s last blog post..Social Media Expert Quiz

  • Dave

    I think SU need to work on their algorithms, perhaps looking and comparing content with previous ‘discoveries’. For me SU fatigue came with the development of pages that seem designed for SU, often with the same old stolen content being rolled out again and again.

    Dave’s last blog post..The Hop Poles and The Eagle

  • SoLinkable

    This is honestly a great move for StumbleUpon. Now that they will have one main page that the majority of users will see, they can get huge returns on advertisement. Their pageviews/unique visitors will go through the roof.

    SoLinkable’s last blog post..30 Creepiest Vegetables on Earth

  • Zurpit

    This is a great move from StumbleUpon, hopefully it will increase their traffic

  • Simon from Otooo

    Aww, but I like the toolbar… :(

    Simon from Otooo’s last blog post..The 5 Keys To A Successful Blog

  • Jayson

    I’m not sure it will be enough to save the service but it will by the company some time that they can use for innovation.

  • Chetan

    Every 1 out of 30 pages is a paid inclusion?
    I never wondered about that!

    And still.. i liked the toolbar.

    Chetan’s last blog post..Interview with Mayank Gupta of Blog Design Studio – WordPress Designer

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  • kouji

    i’m rather fond of stumbleupon actually, as a way to find interesting new sites. i wonder though how this will look.

    kouji’s last blog post..haiku poems: money (credit cards)

  • PS3

    I was an early fan of Stumbleupon but it has tended to be blighted with spam. StubmleThru sounds interesting though.

  • Nicole Price

    I am a great fan of SU and would hate to see it go down. I hope with this move, that will not happen.

    Nicole Price’s last blog post..Hypermiling

  • Christmas Guy

    I think it may increase SU traffic as it is one of its good movements. It is not a secret that having one major page displayed for the most of users can result big advertisement offers.

    Christmas Guy’s last blog post..We Wish You a Merry Christmas Lyrics

  • Joel

    Sounds Great! Now we can use stumble upon in chrome.

    Joel’s last blog post..Search Engine Ranking Checkers

  • Chetan


    Did they make any announcement that it would be available for Chrome?

    Chetan’s last blog post..Top commentators contest – October 2008

  • SoLinkable


    It will be available across all platforms just as soon as the “alternative way for new visitors to use the service without signing up” goes live.

    SoLinkable’s last blog post..Unprepared For Divide_By_Zero – The Daily WTF

  • Chetan

    Then that would be cool.
    Still awaiting for Chrome for mac, then this SU in that Chrome would just be awesome.

    Chetan’s last blog post..Top commentators contest – October 2008

  • San Nayak

    I hate to have tons of toolbar installed to use the simple services, i am relieved now as this new one doesn’t need to have a toolbar to stumble. I guess some good ones are coming in from stumbleupon.

    San Nayak’s last blog post..A Wednesday – Best Hindi Movie of 2008

  • Dennis Edell

    I sincerely hope it doesn’t tank, I just started using it and love it.c :)

    Dennis Edell’s last blog post..Coming Soon? Yes They Are I Swear – I Need Your Advice First!

  • Ryan @ Recording Studio Los Angeles Recording Studios LA

    I feel this could work out quite well if employed in the proper fashion. More power to them if it works!


  • Bill

    Great move, I always like the site, now I like it even more.

  • SEO next

    SU rocks…
    and i guess these changes will increase the user experience and thus result in a better traffic for them…

  • John Trang

    Wow – that hurt. Paid inclusion and I’ve been a chump tp click for free. I suspected there were problems with their page serving algorithm when I saw the same pages hit over and over again in the first 10 pages. They are not serving 1 in 20 or 1 in 30 it is probably more like 1 in 8.

    John Trang’s last blog post..Fruit Custard Pie

  • Goran Web Design

    I really hope that SU knows what they’re doing. Well all we can do is wait to see what effect this change will make.

  • Christmas Guy

    I totally agree with you. Goran. This is the very thing we can do. All we need is patience to see the results.

    Christmas Guy’s last blog post..We Wish You a Merry Christmas Lyrics

  • Jacques Snyman

    SU is an old favourite, my 1st encounter with social media in fact. Hope it doesn’t get changed too much!

  • QuickPWN

    I don’t like to have extra toolbars installed so that’s really good news. Perhaps I will start stumbling now that I don’t need to download extra software.

    QuickPWN’s last blog post..Install Flash Player iPhone App