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Social Sharing Sites: Video, Photos, and Bookmarks

At base level, social media is about sharing. Whether its news articles we find interesting or video we find hilarious, that is the very root of Social Media.

Comscore released a recent statistic stating that 3 out of 4 Internet users have viewed streaming media online (see Figure 3). Most of the views came through Google properties, including YouTube. Sharing your videos and making sure that they’re optimized is quickly becoming a crucial piece of online strategy, as search engines bring in "content" from other sources, including video.

Figure 3

Figure 3 Comscore’s top U.S. online streaming video properties (May 2007).

Pictures shared on Flickr, Picasa, or Photobucket are now showing up in the regular results that search engines are displaying. Videos from Google Video or YouTube can be played directly from Google’s results page, as well as thumbnails of videos from sites like MetaCafe.

Sites that tend to have a lot of bookmarks that are shared through sites like del.icio.us, Furl, Blue Dot, and even StumbleUpon can also drive a lot of traffic. StumbleUpon is likely the one source that can generate a lot of traffic, as the users within these communities tend to really go out of their way to find new and interesting things to share. I don’t mean to discount the other bookmarking sites; a push to the "popular" page on del.icio.us can also garner you a lot of traffic and likely links from other bloggers.

Much like social news, these types of social sharing sites drive more traffic than actual conversions. If branding or eyeballs is your goal, it’s a great starting source. If you’re a retailer, consider creating "tutorial" videos of how to use your products; upload those vids to YouTube and other video sharing sites. Consider uploading product pictures to Flickr or other photo sharing sites, with information about the product and where it can be found on your site. Sometimes these placements lead to greater conversion rates than originally anticipated.

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