"A unique, wry and often satirical look at the Internet, the modern age and life in general" (there is way too much search-engine competition for the phrase "incoherent ramblings")

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Reddit is better than Digg!

If you were following my little experiment yesterday, you will know that I was trying to discover which of the two services, Reddit.com or Digg.com is "better".

What do I mean by "better"? Well, I am looking from the point of view of someone trying to spread the word about a particular piece of news, perhaps a news site, or a regular web site hoping to draw attention to a new feature, product etc. They want to know which of these two services is going to bring their site the most visitors, right?

I devised an incredibly scientific (ha!) experiment whereby I submitted the same gripping story to both services at the same time, and then kept an eye on my server logs (actually, I use a great little freeware PHP-based program called TraceWatch) to see how much traffic came my way as a provable direct referral from each site in the subsequent 24 hour period.

The results
Well, first off, don't expect to hear huge figures! The story headline was pretty weak and you have to have a pretty good leadline to create a buzz on these services. I may well try again at some point with a slightly more, shall we say, sensational headline (just gotta wait for something sensational to happen!)

But even these feeble results confirm what I had already believed to be the case:

  • Digg - 12 hits
  • Reddit - 41 hits!!
And the winner is.... Reddit! For Digg, all 12 hits happened in the first 8 hours, while Reddit continued to provide hits, albeit tailing off drastically, for the whole 24 hour period.

I have noticed with any stories I submit to both services that Reddit consistently sends more visitors to my site/blog/whatever (I have had hits in the 100's before, with a more interesting story!), but I had never officially tested it.

Quality or quantity?
Now the question for web publishers is what is the "quality" of those hits in terms of actual interest of the reader in my site, my company, my product (although I must mention that they are primarily news sites, and should not be abused for the promotion of products - such submissions get "buried" or shunted down the line pretty quickly anyway)?

That will be another experiment, another day. I would like to hear readers' comments though - maybe you have your own take on this, and I bet you can rip my methodology apart too!

Is Reddit really better than Digg, or am I just asking to get buried!?


Bob said...

I must agree, thanks to reddit I got around 10.000 unique hits today whilst usualy I won't get more than a few 100. The post on my blog was http://www.bobmeetsworld.com/?p=33

Thanks reddit! :)

markowe said...

Nothing to do with offering prize money, I am sure :)

Good way to get additional traffic to your site, but you wouldn't want to do it every day!