Practical 101s: Social Bookmarking With Delicious

As people move more and more of their lives online, it gets harder and harder to stay organized.

Where was that great article you read the other day? What was that great blog you read? What was the name of that cool tool you found?

Of course, you could save everything in your browser’s favourites but, let’s face it, that would get unmanageable very quickly.

That’s where Delicious comes in.


Delicious describes itself as, “a social bookmarking service that allows you to tag, save, manage and share Web pages all in one place.”

Social bookmarking?

If you need a quick primer on social bookmarking, here’s a great (and quick) video that describes social bookmarking in… well… plain english.

Why delicious?

Delicious lets you:

  1. Save an unlimited number of sites
  2. Categorize the sites you save, using as many categories for each site as you want (so I might save this site under ‘public_relations,” “communications,” “marketing,” “social_media,” “blog” and so on)
  3. Integrate Delicious buttons into your web browser to make using Delicious easy
  4. Subscribe to other users’ bookmarks (don’t worry, you can save bookmarks privately if you want to) to add to your reading list
  5. Create your own customized search engine containing pages you find useful

Getting started

Getting started on Delicious is very, very easy. There are three steps to signing-up and saving your bookmarks:

  1. Sign up for a Delicious account
  2. (Optional) Install the browser extension
  3. Save away!

Step 1: Sign up for a Delicious account

To get started on Delicious, head over to There are two parts to the registration:

  1. Complete your details
  2. Import your existing bookmarks

Personally, I always skip the second step (which you can do via a link at the top-right of the screen).

Step 2: (Optional) Install the browser extension

You don’t have to do this, but it really is the easiest and most convenient way to use Delicious.

Head over to the Delicious Tools page. You have three options, depending on your browser:

  1. Firefox Bookmarks add-on
  2. Internet Explorer buttons
  3. Bookmarklet buttons for any browser

The first two are far more powerful than the third, so if you’re a Firefox or IE user I recommend those. Make your choice and follow the on-screen instructions.

Step 3: Save away!

Not exactly difficult so far, was it? It doesn’t get any harder, either.

To begin saving bookmarks, find a page you want to save then:

  • If you installed the Firefox or IE add-ons or the bookmarklet buttons, click the “Tag” or “Bookmark on Delicious” button in your browser toolbar
    • Enter your notes for the page in the pop-up box
      • Tip: If you highlight text on the page before clicking “Tag” it will automatically put this text in the ‘Notes’ box for you
    • Enter as many tags as you like
      • Consistency is good with this so you can file similar sites together (I have 175 tags for over 1,100 bookmarks)
      • Tip: Tag sites with as many aspects of the content as possible. Remember, a year down the road you may not remember you ever went to that site. Filing it in as many common-sense places as possible increases the likelihood you’ll be able to find that content again when you need it
    • If you want to keep this bookmark private, check the “do not share” box
    • Click ‘Save’
  • If you chose not to install the add-ons or buttons, copy the address of the page and go to
    • Paste the address in the box, click “Next” and complete the “Notes” and “Tags” fields
      • Tip: Save your bookmark using a new browser window or tab. You will likely want to refer back to the page you’re saving when you complete the “Notes” field
    • Click ‘Save’


Delicious really is an easy site to use, and it can be extremely useful. As I mentioned earlier, I currently have just over 1,100 bookmarks saved, and I refer back to them almost every day.

For some more advanced tips and techniques for Delicious, check out an earlier post of mine on six ways to make life easier with Delicious.

This post is part of an ongoing series of ‘practical 101’ posts on public relations and social media topics. For other, similar advice, check out the ‘practical 101’ series. If you’d like to suggest a topic for the series, let me know in the comments!

Dave Fleet
EVP Digital at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.