Exclusive First Look: SU.PR – Stumble Upon's New Traffic Builder

I’m so excited about SU.PR, it’s hard to contain.

For the last few weeks, the brilliant team at StumbleUpon and I have collaborated on the creation of a new product designed to do one thing: get you more traffic in less time.

It might just become the hub of your social media empire…

Prior to SU.PR (pronounced “super”), I had to use ping.fm for updating Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn at the same time, bit.ly for basic analytics like click-through, scattered tools for viewing retweets, and nothing allowed me to schedule tweets well.

It was all a serious pain in the ass.

SU.PR fixes all of this and adds much more. In one place, I can now:

– Submit my content to StumbleUpon’s 7.9 million users with each post

– Have my best content showcased in a right-hand sidebar for each page I link to (here’s an example)

– Get suggestions for optimal posting times: get more traffic per post

– Schedule as many tweets or posts as I want, for any time

– See my click-throughs in real-time

– See retweets for each post, including the biggest influencers (ranking coming soon)

– Post to Twitter and Facebook at the same time, with more platforms in the pipeline

– Use my own short URL (i.e. www.fourhourblog.com/ab123) instead of someone else’s branding

The result of it all? More traffic. StumbleUpon has jumped to almost 10% of my total traffic per week, delivering as many as 24,000 unique visitors to a single post in less than 24 hours. In short, SU.PR totally kicks ass. It saves me headache, gets me better results through smarter analytics, and drives significant monetizable traffic.

I’ve provided several screenshots below the text of this post to whet your appetite.

It won’t steal your Google juice either. Use one line of javascript or install a simple WordPress plugin (both available later this week) and you’re set to SEO. From George at StumbleUpon, in more technical terms:

Publishers have the option to create Su.pr URLs that will deliver visitors directly to their site via a 301 redirect, preserving their search rank. Simply upload a configuration file in the website’s root directory and it will turn on the option for all the Su.pr URLs for that domain. Unlike other web toolbars, the StumbleUpon toolbar can be hosted on your own site with a single line of Javascript. The toolbar will be shown to your visitors when they click on a Su.pr link. The toolbar promotes your best content in the sidebar and encourages your visitors to thumb-up your page and get more traffic.

Publishers can also build their brand by creating short URLs in their own domain with Su.pr. Your own custom short URLs (i.e. yourblog.com/asd) build your brand each time they are posted and retweeted. Once you enable the option, anyone who creates a short URL to your content with Su.pr will automatically generate a custom short URL. Simply add a rewrite rule and the same configuration file in your website’s root directory will do the work. We plan to have a beta version of the service available for all PHP based websites next week and more platforms to follow shortly.

Since I offered product specs to meet my wants, I’m loving SU.PR, and I’d like to offer a sneak peek to 50 readers. First come, first served: just use the code “suprtim” (I didn’t select the name!) at http://su.pr to get a free beta account, and take the next generation of social media tools for a spin.

[Update: the 50 went fast, but rumor has it that StumbleUpon might release more pre-public beta codes here]

For those of you who don’t make it in now, don’t worry. It’s worth the wait of a few weeks, and this is just the tip of the iceberg 🙂

The SU.PR dashboard – click here to enlarge

My most popular content promoted alongside each link – click here to enlarge

Indicating ideal posting time – click here to enlarge

Intelligent stats on each post – click here to enlarge

Scheduling posts in advance – click here to enlarge

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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154 Replies to “Exclusive First Look: SU.PR – Stumble Upon's New Traffic Builder”

  1. Very slick. Got in, created an account. Too cool. Thanks for sharing & creating. Let me know what you need next.


  2. Sounds like a great program. Can’t wait for the new release and trying it out to increase my site traffic. Thanks Tim!

  3. Signed up for this and it worked for a while but now it does not seem to be updating or getting any information including not updating Twitter followers, etc


  4. hi there

    cool stuff – just got signed up

    I was wandering if it is possible to turn of the toolbar for other websites as well? I’m shortening many many other websites – not only mine


  5. I thought we aren’t allowed to submit our own post to StumbleUpon? Unless their policy has changed…

  6. I work for a non profit and we’ve recently been testing twitter to connect with members, like minded orgs and individuals interested in our cause.

    Our follower list isn’t very big yet – like 200 – but we’ve been testing su.pr in conjunction with online copies of our email blasts, and we’ve been getting about 15% click through which is comparable to our read rate.

    Plus there are more opportunities for re-tweeting, adding new followers, and getting new visitors which we don’t with email lists (those people already know us and subscribe)

    It’s perfect because its all about systematizing and creating efficiency when promoting yourself online.

    social media can be great, but it can be such a time drain – plus it can be a pain to track, but su.pr really kills multiple birds with one stone

  7. I’ve been experimenting with su.pr for two weeks now. It’s a great tool, and has streamlined some of the social media work I do directly related to publishing. StumbleUpon has long been my favorite traffic generator — not to mention a fun place to discover content — and this really ramps up my affection.

  8. that’s great but is the traffic of any value?

    all the traffic i’ve ever gotten from stumbleupon was extremely poor. they don’t do anything, they are just flipping through pages.

  9. Automation at its best. Or worst… 🙂

    Thank you for sharing Tim.

    I kept hearing about your book and kept being skeptical about it. (Forgive me, sinful, father). Now I am reading your blog by an accident and feel like a caveman 🙂 Last one on the party. Ah, what a shame! 🙂

    I might as well read your book… Even thou my work days consists of 0,00 hours by your definition. 🙂

    And this dating automation thing… It’s not that bad idea after all. I think I need to promote my Indian development team to my Personal Dating Appointment Setting Dudes, otherwise I just gave up on the whole damn thing all together – there is no way to manage it. LOL

    Pk… as per this Super-duper tool… I’ve just tried it and am already fond of it… The only question I have – does it allow to manage few accounts simultaneously and have a comprehensive dashboard – all in one?

    And here is an application for my question:

    Let’s say a marketer targets few vertical user categorizes with his/her messages and has profiles PublishingForDummies, PublishingForMommies, PublishingForChickens 🙂 (you know the drill). So, if one uses this approach, does the tool allow to compile the overall account accordingly?


    Olga from Volga LOL

  10. Ok, so there are couple challenges I am facing with the tool:

    1) Facebook users mentioned that when they click on the shortened links all they see is Stumbleupon’s banner. I tried and seems to be able to the pages to which posts were suffering top. But p.2 might confirm that there is something is not right.

    2) I don’t see opened pages neither in Google analytical nor in Statcounter. Not just referrers are missing, but particular pages don’t demonstrate clicks at all while my bstats show hundred clicks.

    What am I missing here? Can anybody enlighten me, unenlightened being? 🙂

  11. Thought I’d weigh in a month or so after Tim’s initial post to tell y’all just how much this su.pr tool rocks.

    Note that this is now replacing BOTH ping.fm and TweetLater in my arsenal.

    I think this is ideal for the small biz: we’re not a large shop by any stretch, and we want to track every little effort to find out if 10 minutes here on this social media exercise beats 20 minutes there on that one. It’s also phenom for repurposing content.

    Cheers, and thanks for sharing!


  12. Tim, I’ve been using su.pr for about a month now and am very impressed. I especially like the ability to schedule posts for Twitter and Facebook. However I have a few questions:

    1. Can you submit content to Stumble Upon through su.pr? I notice when I post a link in su.pr it does not add it to “Discoveries” in my traditional SU account. Do you submit in SU and then just broadcast the link with su.pr? I’d like to hear your methodology here.

    2. The “Traffic Sources” stats are inaccurate. When my links are clicked on Facebook, it records a click for “direct traffic”. Direct traffic always has the vast majority of clicks but I’m sure these are coming from facebook.

    3. I’ve had issues with the times it says I receive clicks. I’ll post content and immediately receive clicks that su.pr says occurred 3 hours beforehand. The timezones settings are correct so it isn’t that.

    Overall I love it and it is my sole url shortener now. Thanks to you and the SU team!

      1. Hey Billy,

        Here you go, from StumbleUpon:

        1. He’s not a pre-approved publisher so it’s not automatic. He has to click thumb-up in order to submit to SU.

        2. The stats are not in real-time. It shows as direct for the first 24 hours of the click (note: the click and not the URL creation), then at midnight our log parser analyzes it and then updates the record. We like to move to a real-time system but it’s still in the works.

        3. I am not sure how this is happening. I will need a couple example URL in order to diagnostic the problem.

  13. Tim,

    I’ve been using this service now for about four weeks and have been very happy with it. I had nothing to compare it to but it met my criteria of letting me go to one place to both tweet and update facebook, and let me know what promotion messages were most effective. I’ve loved the free traffic I’ve picked up with a 5:1 stumbleupon ratio vs. the clicks I self generated. Awesome

    What has been less awesome is that my posts have been disappearing off of su.pr. I have put about 35 messages out altogether and my screen only displays four. This is not an error of selecting a view of “most popular, last 30 days, week, day” or whatever, I have toggled all of the views, logged out and back in, refreshed, you name it.

    I’ve left feedback in the ‘User Box’ tool but am getting no response. Could you either provide me with an e-mail address / phone number for su.pr, or could you forward my note, and let them know my user ID is ‘animationcels’ ? It would be appreciated.



  14. Hi Tim,

    My su.pr issue seems to be resolved and I can now see all of my historical posts again which is great. If this is a result of you sending the info to the su.pr guys then thanks a lot for helping it along. If not, then no need to follow up with them if you haven’t already. See, I’m using the tips from your book on if – then statements in my messages. Saves me lots of time at work.


  15. Hi Tim –

    I’ve been using SU.PR for both the benefit of interesting click tracking, sortable results, and on my own personal domain through the WordPress host on domain plugin.

    Now I’m looking to potentially use it for a corporation with users that aren’t quite as technical. There are some concerns about su.pr hijacking and adding the frame to the top of every page, along with the obvious SEO ones, and while I understand that’s something that’s a huge potential benefit for reblogging links, I’d be using a userbase that’s a little bit less techie.

    Is there any way to turn this frame off on su.pr native? We’re also looking at the white-label use on our domain solution, which has a way to turn this off, but if we can’t get that done, I’d like to still consider native su.pr as well without the frame. Because otherwise, we may need to stick with bit.ly here. Thanks!

  16. I have been using SU.PR heavily for two days, but it appears su.pr doesn’t pass referrer traffic to your site, so you can’t see su.pr visits on Analytics and whatnot when using su.pr wordpress plugin or promoting a link to your site directly on su.pr website to shorten URL.

    Is there a way to get su.pr to pass the referrer to your site so that you can see the traffic on your site, instead of it looking like it doesn’t help at all from an Analytics point of view?

  17. Hi Tim

    I’m fairly new to wordpress but am I right in thinking if I don’t have my own dedicated webhost for my wordpress blog and still use [a wordpress.com domain] then I can’t use su.pr to promote my site?

    Because everytime I put in my wordpress website domain the text is deleted and nothing happens. However if I try it with a standard website such as stumbleupon.com then it tracks it fine.



  18. Thumbing up and adding excellent reviews on the StumbleUpon site is very effective and so is using su.pr; however, the two really need to be merged. The only way to get maximum benefit right now is to do both.

    Although I can use TwitterFeed to feed my review RSS stream to Twitter that doesn’t get my activities using the SU toolbar into my su.pr. If I use su.pr to share content that doesn’t get that activity into my SU microblog.

    StumbleUpon already is the most powerful of Social Networks and they could be far more visible than Twitter and Facebook IF they would only take what they’re already doing and create what we all really need.

    I wrote a blog post explaining how SU almost did it right and could create their own Golden Goose as big as AdWords. I hope you don’t mind that I linked it to this comment so you could read it.

    I am currently working on a post about how combining and expanding the functions of su.pr and the SU toolbar would make StumbleUpon the Social Network of choice hands down. There is currently nothing that does what they have almost done.

    Would you consider reviewing my ideas and possibly passing them on to StumbleUpon. Once you read the post I’ve linked you’ll know why.

  19. Hi Tim,

    I’ve been trying to incorporate the su.pr-short URL’s w/ my domain, but I can’t seem to get the bhtaccess file to work. I don’t understand how Rewrite rules work and I seem to be having a conflict with the new code required for su.pr (step 2 in the instructions) and the existing rules I have in my .htaccess

    I understand this is still beta, but does stumble, or anyone else, have any support for solving rewrite rules issues in the .htaccess file. I come up with 0 on google.



  20. Hey Tim,

    su.pr would be even better if there was an option to post to a Facebook fan page… any chance you can mention that to the folks over at Stumbleupon?


  21. Hi Tim! Thanks for the great article. I recently posted an article on my own blog about why bit.ly is a superior URL shortener, but now I’ll have to give su.pr a try.

    I see that you mentioned that su.pr would be coming out with a WordPress plugin. I see the link for the “WordPress Plugin” on my su.pr page, but when I click this link (http://www.stumbleupon.com/developers/Supr:WordPress_Plugin/), all that comes up is:

    “Supr:WordPress Plugin

    This Article Does Not Exist Yet.

    You are unable to add articles to the wiki. Sorry!”

    Do you know what’s going on here? Does the WordPress plugin exist, or did StumbleUpon remove this plugin because it wasn’t gaining traction?

    Thanks! 🙂

  22. Hi Tim,

    I’m very impressed with Su.pr and glad you have had some say in how it’s developed…. any chance you ask them to add support for Facebook fan pages and LinkedIn status? I have been trying to use Hootsuite/hootlet and it just isn’t as good at tracking and time watching as Su.pr. (I did add to their Feedback/Get satisfaction list).

    Thanks much!

  23. Hi Tim,

    I’m very impressed with Su.pr and glad you have had some say in how it’s developed…. any chance you ask them to add support for Facebook fan pages and LinkedIn status? I have been trying to use Hootsuite/hootlet and it just isn’t as good at tracking and time watching as Su.pr. (I did add to their Feedback/Get satisfaction list).

    Thanks much!

  24. Tim, thanks for tips on using su.pr. Is there a way to integrate ping.fm with the service? Since su.pr only distributes to a couple social networking sites, I like to be able to import my blog content into su.pr, which then distributes it to ping.fm since they distribute to multiple other social media sites. Or, if su.pr did the same thing and distributed to more than just facebook, twitter, and linkedin.

  25. You are unable to add articles to the wiki. Sorry!”

    Do you know what’s going on here? Does the WordPress plugin exist, or did StumbleUpon remove this plugin because it wasn’t gaining traction?

    Thanks! 🙂

  26. Hey Tim,

    I just wanted to say that I got your book 4HWW way back when it was first published around 2007, and I also picked up the audio version not along after, which I actually fall asleep to at night sometimes. I used to own StumbleUpon.com, and still own StumbleOn.com. Garrett would likely remember me from when they wanted to buy it from me way back when, maybe 10 years or so ago now. I know that you are an investor in them, and they have done well with their product. I just thought it funny how small the world really is that I used to own it, then I really got into your work, and then you invested and mentored the guys and gals over there. I’ve got tons of great stuff I’m working on myself here in Seattle (Inkblot.com, CustomerBlog.com, CommunityBlog.com, and, of course, StumbleOn, just to name a few).

    Don’t worry, I’m not planning on pulling a Paul Ceglia (though if the allegations are true, he does deserve his share of Facebook) and filing a lawsuit against StumbleUpon or anything after years gone by. Besides, I think we’d legally be latched to one another at this point. No bad blood, just some fun ribbing here and there.

    Anyhow, Just saying hello and thanks for the great tips and advice that you tip to us all!


    1. Thanks for the comment, Kyle! Man, it really is a small world, and it just seems to get smaller by the day.

      Kia kaha and all the best,


  27. Tim,

    First off, huge fan. I am consistently using tricks I’ve found through your books. Dumb question. Do you still find su.pr as useful as when it first came out? I use WordPress and it looks like it now does a lot of this for you if you connect the accounts. Is the main advantage the link to Stumbleupon and hopefully the corresponding traffic? You’re looking at a guy who took shop instead typing in school, so I like simplicity. Thanks!