Based on two months of testing across a half-dozen B2B websites and blogs, these Web 2.0 social bookmarking sites produced the best results, in terms of driving direct traffic and having active, engaged discussion communities.
Overall, Web 2.0 sites didn't drive a large amount of direct traffic (depending on the B2B site, Web 2.0 sites added 1% to 3% to total traffic—but had larger indirect benefits on traffic, such as through blog exposure and SEO). The percentages shown below are the proportion of total Web 2.0 social tagging-driven traffic contributed by each site (e.g. if a site got a total of 200 visits from all the sites in the study, Yahoo! MyWeb would have accounted for about five of those).
This list includes the top 10 general-interest sites as well as three special-purpose Web 2.0 social bookmarking sites.
10) Yahoo! MyWeb 2.4%
A decent tool, but nothing really sets it apart from the pack.
9) Netvouz 3.2%
A surprisingly effective tool for B2B marketers, considering that the site makes a big deal of saying "You must not use the Service for any commercial purpose, to distribute any advertising or solicitation of funds or goods or services without express prior written approval of Netvouz." Maybe they've missed their calling? Or maybe they should at least lighten up.
8) Fark.com 4.1%
Another site that gets surprisingly good results in the B2B space considering the description of its genesis: "Fark was originally a word Drew became known for using online back in the early 1990s. He can't remember why, but his guess is that it was either to replace another F-word or that he was just drunk and mistyped something. He tells everyone it was the former since it's a better story that way."
7) Ma.gnolia 5.3%
A very slick tool—its auto-fill capability for key fields is among the best of any of these sites.
6) StumbleUpon 6.2%
Great browser toolbar, but missing the ability to add keywords. Still, impressively effective.
5) Digg 6.5%
A bit more difficult to use than many of the other sites on this list, but apparently worth the effort.
4) Clipmarks 7.1%
Their clipping tool provides limited control over the area to be clipped—but gets first-rate results anyway.
3) BibSonomy 7.9%
Definitely the dark horse in this list. Plain interface and separating tags with spaces rather than commas is a minor annoyance. But, it's tough to argue with third place.
2) Searchles 8.8%
By far the most actively-engaged community of any of these sites, and the daily email summaries of fresh links set this site apart from the crowd.
1) [Drumroll please...] Zimbio 12.9%
Not a surprise—excellent feature set and very easy to use.
There you have it, the best of the general-interest Web 2.0 social tagging sites. All are WebMarketCentral-recommended. Finally, three special-purpose sites that generated very impressive results:
An online community focused on web marketing, or as the site puts it: "Benefit from the collective intelligence of your peers to discover the best internet marketing strategies and thought leadership." BeeTooBee is one of the best places to tag content related to online marketing tools, services, strategies, tactics and content.
Technorati is only for blog promotion, but it is the Google of blog promotion. Nothing else even comes close.
Focused on software developers specifically, and the technology community more generally, DZone is the best place to tag software-related news and thought leadership content. It's the new Slashdot.
Previous articles in this series:
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 1: Alexa Rankings
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 2: The Worst
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 3: Special-Purpose Sites
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 4: B2B Traffic Building
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 5: Tier 3 Sites
Web 2.0 Social Tagging Sites, Part 6: Tier 2 Sites
The site for online marketing business resources: WebMarketCentral.com
The only Minneapolis-based PR & marketing agency focused exclusively on B2B lead generation and go-to-market strategy for IT companies: KC Associates
Contact Mike Bannan: firstname.lastname@example.org