“StumbleUpon is a great fit within our goal of pioneering new communities based on commerce and sustained by trust,” said Michael Buhr, senior director, eBay. “StumbleUpon’s downloadable toolbar provides an engaging and unique experience to its users, but it is the similarities in our approaches to the concept of community that make it such a compelling addition to eBay.”
There are no initial plans to change StumbleUpon as of yet, however eBay’s Buhr will serve as general manager of StumbleUpon. StumbleUpon’s current founders and management team will remain in their positions, practicing a bit of autonomy.
What changes may eBay make to StumbleUpon in the future which will not hurt its tight relationship with its 2.3 million users?
Well, StumbleUpon’s current business model is advertising driven as publishers can pay to have targeted SU users exposed to their sites via StumbleUpon.
Since one of the strengths of StumbleUpon is its comunity, expect more Skype and communication tie-ins, but the real change will probably take place in StumbleUpon Shopping or product recommendations based upon StumbleUpon user behavior.
Adding more search features to the site is also an option, as currently searches bring users directly to a page. It would be nice to be able to search tagged sites ranked by Stumble, and then Stumble through relevant sites to the one chosen. Sponsored links could, of course, be served in the search results.