There are a countless number of WordPress social media plugins, which let visitors share your posts across social networks. However, very few of them are any good.
These were some of the important things I was looking for in a social sharing plugin:
- A comprehensive set of social media buttons.
- Ability to show the buttons in multiple places, including a floating box.
- The option to show the number of shares per social network.
- Speed. The plugin should not be slow or cause my site to slowdown.
After trying quite a few, I realised that none of the WordPress social plugins were perfect. But there are 3 which are close to perfect and I use these on my websites.
- Huge number of social networks included.
- Many options for displaying the buttons, with the share count included.
- Nice user interface, which encourages more sharing and browsing of content.
- If you register, you can get access to decent user and sharing data.
- You need to register on their site and get a publisher key, in order to get the user/sharing data.
- I find that it can be slow at times and share counts can take time to appear.
- For showing a floating social box, you have to generate a code snippet on their site and then paste that into your theme.
- The floating social box does not show share counts.
- The plugin is made by Joost de Valk. He’s been around the block, knows his stuff and I trust what he says/does.
- Quick and easy to setup.
- Has the option for including share buttons in posts and also in a floating box.
- Looks good and is fast.
- Not as many buttons as ShareThis.
- The floating box has the name of the plugin mentioned, with a link back to the plugin homepage. There is no option to remove this. I don’t like it when plugins do that and my guess is, that it’s to get backlinks for SEO purposes.
- I would’ve liked to see more options to customise the colour, size, etc. for the floating box.
- Easy to setup.
- Enough options to customise how things look.
- Lots of social media buttons included.
- You can add buttons which are not included.
- As of writing this post, the plugin hasn’t been updated since the beginning of 2011.
- Only has a floating box and no option to include share buttons within posts.
For this website, I am using a mix of Sharebar (for the floating box) and Sociable (for buttons below posts). If Sociable didn’t have a link included in the floating box, it would’ve been the best WordPress social media plugin for me and I wouldn’t need to use Sharebar.