The new site is clean, simple and image oriented.
Obviously Delicious has learned from the many image bookmarking sites out there that have sprung all over the Web in the recent years. On the other hand the new site focuses on social sharing and commenting as well.
The most important change is probably the new curation feature called “stacks”. Users can contribute so called “playlists for the web” [sic!]. A stack contains several links and images about one topic usually.
Said that there are also many features that have disappeared. I have tried to compile a list of both new features that have been added and old features that have been discontinued.
- stacks (user curated groups of links)
- one-click saving of links
- two word tags with a blank space
- tags separation by commas
- “my inbox” with shared links
- profile pictures (avatars)
- featured stacks and links on home page
Old features missing
- individual tag cloud
- bookmark counts per tag in the sidebar
- searching bookmarks in “your network”
- subscribing to tags
- blog/website widgets with bookmark count
- news “floating around the Web”
- Twitter integration
I think another main difference comparing the old and new Delicious is that now it’s about sharing links while in the past it was about saving bookmarks for yourself. So Delicious attempts to compete with big link sharing services like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. I know they are called officially social networking but from a technical point of view the services are about sharing links. Linkless updates are allowed of course. Delicious focuses just on the links. This may be the remaining difference.
The new Delicious is less an aggregated bookmark collection and more a both curated and editorial publication.
There are no popular bookmarks anymore, there are “featured links”. The editorial team attempts to make Delicious appeal to the broad public as they push topic like politics, travel or entertainment. Until now Delicious was mostly used Web professionals who saved web development or design resources.
Also they want to stand out by making people subscribe to curated groups of links aka stacks like you can subscribe to a YouTube channel.
So it seems quite obvious to me that Delicious can once again be of use for getting website traffic. Also it seems to me that it takes less effort in the long run to get visitors to you site. Stacks can be established once and then once you get a few subscribers you can add a new link from time to time.
It’s not yet clear what the criteria are to get promoted to the frontpage.
I guess it’s mostly
- potential mass appeal
- visual attractiveness
- a non-technical topic
as of now.
People can subscribe to your stack or follow it. New links show up on top so you can share your stack more than once and people will treat it like a link blog. In a way Delicious attempts to compete with Tumblr where many blogs are just link collection about a certain topic.
A user who has quickly grasped how to create useful stacks is sanclementejoe. He has created three stacks about SEO two of them I’d like to recommend: Best SEO resources and Google Webmaster Tools Guides. I have created a stack about SEO 2.0 myself so you can check this one out as well. Most other of the by now 150+ SEO related stacks are self-promotional in nature and either mediocre or downright spammy so there is still plenty of room to stand out.
Of course other more popular topics have more chances of getting decent exposure on Delicious as SEO is a niche topic even among the typical Delicious users. Also as I mentioned above Delicious wants to get out of the technology ghetto.
Choose a visually appealing topic.
Articles about SEO already fail here as most of them do not have inspiring imagery. Most of them use screen shots and diagrams. So arts or photography are probably good choices to get some editorial love.
To me the goal is always targeted traffic not the casual traffic of thousands of people who don’t care about a topic but the few dozens that really do. The new Delicious has potential to provide the people who care with the resources collection they seek and the content providers with the visitors they are after. As of now though the sharing features are rudimentary. There is no auto-suggest feature to address your followers when sharing links or stacks so you have the remember the exact user name.
You can’t share with all your followers.
You can’t even share with your followers at all, beacuse right now Delicious only displays the people you are following, not those you follow. I see only a 12 or so of them while I have at least a hundred people I follow on Delicious. Also at least half of them follows me as well as far as I remember.
So as of now you have to share your stacks on other social sites. That’s a good start though as a stack isn’t as ephemeral as a single link. You can share it today, a week from now again and in a month a third time. You’re not sharing just a link but a resource, a compilation of links.
For now I think a list of around 8 to 12 links is the best size for a stack.
Stacks that get updated continuously like a Tumblr blog could be also a viable and valuable option depending on the topic.
Personally I’m quite optimistic that Delicious will rise again. other than Digg where mismanagement led to a steady decline here two enthusiastic start-up entrepreneurs can fix it. The many years long impasse Delicious was subject to at Yahoo is over. The innovation is simple but useful. Link sharing is perhaps the most wide spread social networking activity right now and Delicious takes it to another level.
They are fixing the bugs, restoring missing bookmarks and features that have stopped working as well so they may retain many of their old users as well. Digg made the mistake of taking features away and insisting on removing them. Delicious is listening to its users.