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Tech Tips Tuesday: Stumbleupon 101 Signup

More than once you’re probably had an email from me saying, “I didn’t leave you a comment but I loved your post and stumbled it.”

Oftentimes a post or a site will grab my attention and I don’t have anything to add to the conversation, but still I’d like to share the discovery with a few (million) people.

I do this for a number of reasons:

  • I love finding new applications and news stories
  • I like helping other bloggers
  • I love finding new sites
  • I like helping bloggers who link to me
  • I get traffic (I’m not an altruist, so sue me)

Here’s how to set up your stumble upon account.

First go to and you’ll see a screen like this.


The next thing you’ll do is enter your information. Stumble Upon is a safe site,as much as any site is. Use whatever email address it is that you’ve used with your other social media sites and sign up.
Like so. It’s really great if you can use the same username and picture all over the Internet, then you’ve sort of branded yourself.


The next thing you’ll want to do is to add the Stumbleupon Toolbar to your Firefox browser. If you aren’t using Firefox I’m afraid I can’t be too helpful. I’m sitting in a room simply peppered with desktops and laptops made by everyone from Apple to Dell to Gateway and I run Firefox on all of them, it’s the best way to surf the web.

So, you’ve added your StumbleUpon toolbar now and you’ve logged in you can do a few things.

First: Read the rules, you do not want to be kicked out of Stumbleupon. The Cliff Notes version is this, if you’re thinking that you can game the system, give up now.

Second: Find your friends on StumbleUpon, you can enter your email information and you’ll automatically subscribe to anyone in your contact list. I freely enter my Gmail password on Stumble Upon, but I also have an email address that I use only for social media (like Facebook, Stumble, Digg and Twitter) so there’s only the illusion that it’s terribly personal.

Third: Click the stumble icon on the furthest left. It looks like this Stumble! and a new site will pop up. If you like it click the thumbs up, () and the page will be shared with people who are interested in similar things. You can click the thumbs down, but I try to think of it like a bad blog or book review. Is it necessary? I always thumb down obvious splog sites or sites with spyware, but if you’re not stealing content, I probably will just keep stumbling.

Do you want to thumb your own site up? Uh, sorta. You do, but not until someone else does. You don’t want to submit your own site to Stumble Upon for a number of reasons, and that really does deserve it’s own post. Just, don’t, it’s icky.

Do you want to stumble your friends’ sites? Yes! Of course you do. That’s half the fun of stumbling. You take your friends and show them off to your other friends. Stumble their main sites and an individual post if you see one that’s particularly good. Make sure you don’t get into a weird loop of the same sites, it’s dull and it may make them think you’re gaming the system.

Earlier today I stumbled MSM sites and Rose’s Life, I hope she saw a spike in traffic.

When you’re searching for friends on stumbleupon be sure to add me, I’m I stumble a lot of blogs, tons of opensource and environmental issues. I also find that there’s a few writers I can follow nicely from their stumbles.

If you like this post go ahead and hit the thumbs up icon.
If enough of y’all enjoy this I’ll give you a part two to Stumbleupon next week.
I think that you’ll be pleasantly surprised if you just start connecting with a few friends on Stumbleupon.

My experience has been that it brings me anywhere from 200 to 6,000 hits a day and (with the exception of writing this post) it may only add 10 minutes to my day. It’s also made me a better blogger, I find writers much better than myself and I’m stimulated by what they do. I find software that’s free (yipee) and news sources I’d otherwise miss. I also find out who my readers are and what it is that they want to read.

Because really, I just want to write the words you want to read.
I kinda need you.


Link recap:

Stumbleupon main page
Download firefox here
Stumbleupon toolbar as a Firefox Addon
Connect with me on Stumbleupon

18 thoughts on “Tech Tips Tuesday: Stumbleupon 101 Signup”

  1. Awesome, thanks! I’ve been using Stumbleupon for some time, but this was still helpful. And I always wondered about stumbling one’s own posts. Seemed icky, as you say, lol, but it’s tempting, isn’t it?

    Just sent you a friend request, by the way. I’m dcrmom. Same as on Twitter.

    I do have one question. How do I find more bloggers I know so I can grow my Stumbleupon “friends”?? Is it just thru my email client, as you describe? Thanks!

  2. @housewife yes, just use your email client, I’ll talk more about interactions next week. I don’t want to overwhelm you or myself with a tome

    @annie you can use other browers and I know how to use them just so I can check my sites’ appearances on them, but they aren’t nearly as useful, moving forward each tuesday you’ll see why

    @cathy much like parenting, I’ve made terrible mistakes with social media, I can only help you sidestep the ones I know. Be certain that I’m making new mistakes each day :)

  3. Awesome post, and I’m not saying that because you linked to me! :-) I made that classic “stumbling your own site before anyone else can get to it” mistake. I’m now hanging my head in shame. In my defense, it was before I knew anything and I was following bad advice…

    I have questions about the Stumble toolbar. I like showing my friends sites that I’ve liked or I think deserve a stumble, but as far as I can tell I can only send the link to one friend at a time. Is there a way to send it to more people at once?

  4. If you love your IE here’s a link to an add on for their toolbar I don’t endorse it because I haven’t tried it, but Stumbleupon won’t work for you the blogger unless it works for you the surfer.

    And here’s a hack for any web browser.
    Again, I don’t know much about it so give it a try and let us all know?

  5. I SO want to love StumbleUpon, but the stumble gods have not been good to me. Despite an average of forty comments per post, and major kudos on my writing, I do not have the content that gains traction on channel surfing StumbleUpon. I just sigh and think maybe someday I’ll start writing list posts, just to see if that’ll stick.

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