Sunday, July 6, 2008

What Is the Digg Effect?

So my last post on Digg's new recommendation engine made the front page of Digg. Most excellent. And I was thinking a good follow-up would be a discussion of the so-called Digg Effect, i.e. how many pageviews making the front page typically gets you.

I've seen the number 40,000 mentioned before, and from second-hand experience I can tell you that seems to be a decent ballpark figure. Of course, every story is going to be different, but I've got a buddy who works for a site that covers comic books and toys (two topics that are Internet gold), and some of his entries have made the front page over the past few months, and when he makes the front page he gets anywhere from 15,000 to 40,000 direct referrals from, not to mention the bonus pageviews from sites like Gorilla Mask or Reddit, which often follow Digg's lead and can bring in another 10,000.

But we're talking about comics and toys here. In the case of my little post praising Digg's new recommendation engine, which was submitted under Tech News, I managed to get -- drum roll, please -- 2,753 referrals from Digg and another 219 from Reddit, which is far less than the 40K mentioned above.

Why so few? Well, mine was at least the second post that day that mentioned the new engine and its title ("Hooray for Digg's New Recommendation Engine") was meant more as a thumbs-up to Digg than an enticement to actually get users to click on the link.

And for anyone who's wondering: My Google AdSense earnings for the first few days were -- another drum roll, please -- eight cents.

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