Tips that save time.
(Note. This post contains a list of popular social news sites. In some scenarios, social news sites are great to get backlinks to your blog or website.)
In the previous part we were discussing some popular social bookmarking sites. If I were to choose just a single biggest benefit of social bookmarking I would have to say that it’s the sole result of getting a link and all the SEO benefits that follow.
Social news sites, however, even though similar in nature, provide a completely different main benefit.
From a technical standpoint, you use social news sites very similarly to social bookmarking sites. You just choose a site, register, submit a link along with a short description, and you’re done.
But the main benefit isn’t the link itself. It’s the traffic that follows. That is, if your content has a viral enough nature.
Before I tell you anything else let me just show you the two leaders of this market, so you can understand what exactly a social news site is.
There you go.
Social news sites are basically all about having users submit interesting (at least in theory) information, and then have other users vote which entries deserve more coverage.
So the most viral content ends up being seen by thousands of people, and the least viral content falls into oblivion.
How to make social news sites work for you
No one knows this exactly… Sorry.
Social news sites are a funny thing. Oftentimes, some stupid piece of garbage-information ends up the most seen thing ever, while interesting, exciting, and well-written articles get almost no attention at all.
It all depends on the site you’re submitting your entry to. Some things work better on some sites than others. Depending on what you want to share it’s up to you to select the best sites.
One advice I have for you is: don’t care about failure or criticism. Don’t give up if your content sees no reaction whatsoever. Or even if someone says that your content is crap (it happens). Or even if you get banned for whatever reason (just create another account).
The simple truth is that social news sites are run by their own rights, and there’s no telling what might happen.
Why is it worth it, then?
The main benefit of using social news sites
First of all, you have to do it right. You have to create awesome content, viral, and also be a little lucky while submitting it to the right social news sites.
If you get all of these elements right you might see a massive stream of traffic to your site. This is the kind of traffic your webhost might not be ready for and cause your site to crash. This happens quite often for some really popular stories.
So if the traffic is the biggest benefit, why am I listing social news sites as part of my “Get Backlinks” series? Two reasons:
- You still get a link from the social news site.
- The sole act of your story being popular may result in more links from other people who have seen it.
I know that this is not a given, but when it happens you get the most valuable links possible – natural links created by other people. Google loves those.
Giving yourself a head-start
Registering on, any social news site and only visiting it to submit your own stuff is the fastest way to get banned. That’s because, essentially, this is spamming.
To have a better chance of succeeding you should pick just a small range of social news sites and be a somewhat active user there. Which means visiting them and voting on various stuff from time to time, and occasionally submitting your own story.
If you get banned anyway, simply create another account or choose a different site.
Also, remember that using social news sites can’t be your only technique of getting links and recognition. Link building is most effective when you’re using a number of different techniques. This makes your backlinking profile look more natural.
That being said, I wouldn’t focus the majority of my link building efforts on social news sites. Try to use it only when you know that you’ve created an outstanding piece of content. For example, something that has a significant number of shares and retweets already (as an indication of its viral nature).
When using social news sites in such a situation you have a big chance of multiplying your traffic and getting even more publicity. When using social news in a situation when you have just a mediocre piece of content you won’t see any results.
What follows is a list of popular social news sites that fall into different categories. Some niches and markets have more social news sites (e.g. web design), and some have none (I haven’t been able to locate any music-related social news site, for example).
21 social news sites worth checking out
Other social news sites (PR ordered):
Lastly, don’t hesitate to shoot me a comment if you know more quality social news sites that would be a good fit for this list.