What Is Yahoo! Buzz and Is It Worth Bothering With?

Yahoo Buzz

Remember when Digg, Delicious, StumbleUpon and all the other social networks which allow people to vote for their favorite new stories first started to appear? They were all the rage and people were falling all over themselves to get in – so too has been the situation since the new Yahoo! Buzz service was introduced.

What is Yahoo! Buzz?

Basically, Yahoo! Buzz is a social network much like Digg, Delicious and all the others. It’s designed to let people vote on their favorite news items, with the theory being that the very best will rise to the top.

However, there is one important difference when it comes to Buzz which every other social network for news doesn’t have to offer: they’re backed by Yahoo!. So what’s the big deal, right? “Yahoo! is hardly anything all that special anymore,” is what I’m sure you’re thinking to yourselves.

“Maybe they were 5 or 6 years ago, but these days they’re the number two search engine” (a distant number two – the latest results say Google has 65.6%, with Yahoo! taking in 16.1% and Bing getting 13.2%). Be that as it may, we’re not talking here about search (though Buzz does have tremendous value for that too).

Featured on the Yahoo! Home Page

While Google focuses primarily on search and keeps their home page very clean and neat (if you want a “start” page, you need to use iGoogle, which is nowhere near as popular as the main Google page as a home page), Yahoo! continues to have a number of features on their front page, including links to news and other features.

The very best Yahoo! Buzz Up stories (as chosen by a human being who picks them for Yahoo! at their corporate headquarters, though getting onto that radar requires getting voted on by Yahoo! Buzz members) get featured on the front page of Yahoo!.

This means millions of users seeing your blog post or article and flooding the gates of your website (and hopefully also shopping for whatever it is you happen to sell). Now that’s worth its’ weight in gold. Even getting on the front page of places like Digg or Delicious can’t compete with getting on Yahoo!’s front page.

A Note About Search

Before we go on to how to get to the top on Yahoo! Buzz, just a quick note about search: Besides the fact that getting to the top of the rankings in Yahoo! can be quite helpful (they still draw millions of search customers per day), getting to the top of the Buzz home page, or even better, the Yahoo! home page is huge.

That would give you a PR9 link, which is a big deal (there simply aren’t very many PR9 websites out there to begin with and getting listed in one by paying for it is extraordinarily expensive). Basically, getting one or more of your stories featured on the Yahoo! home page would bring not only direct traffic, but lots of search traffic as well because of the value of the link there.

How to Get There

The key to Buzz, as with any social networking service is votes. You can add a widget to your blog or website which will allow people to vote for your article or website and to get some buzz going on it (hence the name).

Of course, just like with any other social networking site, those who get aggressive about trying to get out the vote will be the most successful in reaching the front page of Yahoo! Buzz, from where stories for the Yahoo! home page are cherry picked, leading you to massive amounts of traffic. So go ahead and buzz up your best stories!