Why StumbleUpon's SU.PR may not be a Super Idea
On reading the GigaOm piece about stumbleupon's newly launched url-shortener SU.PR, I was very intrigued. Here is a service that is offering click tracking (like bit.ly) but also helps you in getting more traffic. It looked like a credible alternative to bit.ly. Though the functionality and statistics offered by bit.ly is good, its user interface is clunky. Also in SU.PR you can schedule your tweets for maximum exposure and hence more traffic. What is there, not to like? Unfortunately su.pr repeats the mistakes of the original diggbar. Here is a sample url shortened by su.pr http://su.pr/243gFG
Stumbleupon seems to have learnt nothing from the furore and backlash generated by diggbar's original practices which ultimately caused digg to backtrack. su.pr repeats the mistakes of DiggBar.
- Content is framed: Like the diggbar used to do su.pr frames the content. But is actually worse than the digg bar. It puts frames on the top and well as on the right side. The frames are always shown, even to visitors who are not logged into stumbleupon. (diggbar currently frames the content only for digg users)
Click on the image to see a larger version. Frankly with a frame on the right, this looks ugly. But if you are a stumbleupon user you might like it.
- Bad For SEO. One of the biggest reasons why there was an outlash against the diggbar was because it did not offer a 301 redirect to spiders but replied with 200. This denied pagerank to the destination sites. Su.pr improves marginally on this account. It offers a 302 Found redirect to spiders. But 302 is a temporary redirect. To pass on pgaerank su.pr should be using the 301 Redirect which is the permanent redirect and is what is recommened by search engines.
- User Interface: Unlike bit.ly which has a spartan (but not clean) user interface, su.pr has a clean and aesthetically pleasing UI.
- Scheduled Post & Suggested Posting Time: If you use twitter or facebook as traffic drivers to your site this can be a godsend. Not only will su.pr allow you to schedule a post, it will also suggest the best time to schedule it for.
- Click Tracking: This feature is offered by bit.ly also.
- StumbleUpon Linking: Creating a shortened URL by su.pr also submits that url to stumbleupon. This can be a signigicant source of traffic for some sites.