StumbleUpon: Internet Version of TV Guide for Parents?John Cave Osborne
StumbleUpon, a service which helps internet users identify and share websites of interest, has been quite the buzz lately. But I suppose that’ll happen when a relatively new company garners the type of traffic that StumbleUpon has managed to snag. Investors have taken note, as last month alone $17 million was put up by folks eager to lay claim to their stake of the company which many believe will be a sharing tool for the social media generation.
Search Engine Land editor, Danny Sullivan, believes that the San Francisco based company has done so well in part because of their ability to dovetail with Facebook and Twitter, two incredibly efficient and prolific means of information sharing.
But what I want to know is can StumbleUpon help parents find sites that would be of value to their kids?
Given how well the site translates to mobile users, not to mention how easy it is to use, I’d say the answer to that question is probably yes.
Though Search Engine Land editor, Danny Sullivan, doesn’t address the parenting angle, his description of the service sounds promising, indeed. “StumbleUpon is channel surfing,” Sullivan told USA Today, “and that’s a behavior the online audience apparently wants to do and it translates really well to mobile.”
And StumbleUpon CEO Garrett Camp couldn’t be happier about that. Garrett first turned to the mobile phone market just last summer. Now such business accounts for approximately 40% of StumbleUpon’s business. Their app has been downloaded over a million times.
But it’s not just the fact that mobile customers are downloading the app. It’s how easy that app is to use. “People don’t want to type in URLs,” says Camp, “They just want to click a button and find something cool.”
So how do you use it? It’s simple. Just sign up for a free account and check the appropriate interests to adequately match what you’re looking for. So, for example, if you’re a parent who is always on the go and hoping to find sites which might engage your 9-year-old, simply check the boxes which correlate with what you think will interest your child.
Then stumble away. You can click the “stumble” icon and you’ll immediately be taken to a site. Not what you had in mind? Not a problem. Click stumble again to be taken elsewhere. Eventually you’re bound to land on a “channel” that will be of interest.
Do you use StumbleUpon? Have you found it helpful to find sites of interest for your children?