Forget ABCs – The Social Media Alphabet Is DNRS

Many search marketers know their search engine alphabet, A for; G for Google; M for Microsoft and Y for Yahoo. But how many know the important letters of the social media alphabet, D for Digg; N for Netscape; R for Reddit and S for StumbleUpon? Comfortable with AGMY but DNRS seems like another language? Relax. Here are the ABCs of DNRS:


Digg Home Page

Digg is a social news site that covers all topics but is mainly populated with tech, world and business stories. Digg is a community based website where users submit stories, “digg” or vote for the stories they like and share their thoughts through comments.

The overall purpose of Digg is to get stories promoted to the homepage through voting which is predominately controlled by the top users because of the stories they choose to submit and the number of digg friends they have.

The New Digg Features Plus, A Submitter’s Perspective is a recent story I wrote for Search Engine Land that covers Digg in more depth.


Netscape Home Page

Netscape is similar to Digg, but it is mainly populated with political stories. Like Digg, the community decides which stories are promoted to the homepage. The difference is that the stories have to work their way up to the top of the homepage and only have a lifespan of 24 hours. After 24 hours a story is removed from the queue and the homepage.

Although Netscape is similar to Digg, there are differences that affect the promotion of a story. The first is that on Netscape, stories are not mainly controlled by friends. The second is that Netscape Anchors (employees of Netscape) can pin stories at the top of the homepage to give them prime visibility.


Reddit Home Page

Reddit is also another social news site like Digg and Netscape. Like Netscape, you have to work your way up to the top of the homepage, which can make it difficult to get a story good visibility. Reddit also makes it harder by allowing people to give stories a “down vote.” All the other sites in the social media alphabet also allow users to vote down a story, but on Reddit, the down vote option is more prominent and thus more widely used by users. So if users like a story, they give it an up vote. If they hate a story, they give it a down vote.


StumbleUpon Buzz Page

StumbleUpon is a community driven website that revolves around a toolbar:

StumbleUpon Toolbar

Users surf the web as they normally would and when they find a site they like, they give it a thumbs up. If they find a site they dislike, they give it a thumbs down. If users want to view something cool or random, they hit the Stumble button on their toolbar. That takes them to pages that other users with similar interests have liked. You can also visit StumbleUpon’s buzz page (shown in the large screenshot above) to see what’s popular right now.

The overall goal of StumbleUpon is to drive traffic to a site by getting more users to give your stories a “thumbs up,” which can be accomplished by building a high audience rating and by making friends with other users. But unlike the other social sites, StumbleUpon only allows you to add up to 200 friends.

Try Out Your New Alphabet

The next time you have a few spare moments, check out this social media alphabet soup of sites and get to know them. They have been growing at a rapid pace over the past year. More and more marketers are trying to get familiar with them because they can drive thousands of visitors to a website within minutes and potentially create thousands of natural links to it, which can help improve a site’s search engine rankings.

Neil Patel is co-founder and CTO of ACS and writes regularly on social media issues through the company’s blog, Pronet Advertising. The Let’s Get Social column appears Tuesdays at Search Engine Land.

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

Related Topics: Channel: Social | Search & Social | Search Engines: Digg | Search Engines: Social Search Engines | Social Media Marketing | StumbleUpon


About The Author:

Connect with the author via:


Get all the top search stories emailed daily!  


Other ways to share:

Read before commenting! We welcome constructive comments and allow any that meet our common sense criteria. This means being respectful and polite to others. It means providing helpful information that contributes to a story or discussion. It means leaving links only that substantially add further to a discussion. Comments using foul language, being disrespectful to others or otherwise violating what we believe are common sense standards of discussion will be deleted. Comments may also be removed if they are posted from anonymous accounts. You can read more about our comments policy here.
  • David

    Just love Stumble

    How about ma.gnolia????

  • Neil Patel

    David, there are many other social sites such as Blink List, but I tried to write on the major ones.

  • kn0thing

    Nicely done. It’s just a shame that an alphabet with only D, N, R, and S isn’t good for spelling anything.


    I guess someone needs to start a site beginning with a vowel.

  • skylights

    You didn’t mention, perhaps the biggest and most influential social bookmarking site.

  • Linda Bustos

    I think that Youtube should be here to make a the acronym NRDY.
    It’s way more popular than Stumbleupon which sends a whack of non-targeted traffic.


Get Our News, Everywhere!

Daily Email:

Follow Search Engine Land on Twitter @sengineland Like Search Engine Land on Facebook Follow Search Engine Land on Google+ Get the Search Engine Land Feed Connect with Search Engine Land on LinkedIn Check out our Tumblr! See us on Pinterest


Click to watch SMX conference video

Join us at one of our SMX or MarTech events:

United States


Australia & China

Learn more about: SMX | MarTech

Free Daily Search News Recap!

SearchCap is a once-per-day newsletter update - sign up below and get the news delivered to you!



Search Engine Land Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors

Get Your Copy
Read The Full SEO Guide