In between watching viral videos of animals doing tricks, humans doing crazy things and liking photos of another person sitting with their back to the camera in a beautiful setting, people also use social media to share content. A lot of content… In fact social media is one of the largest sources of referral traffic to websites.
If you’re serios about blogging like a pro you need to get your content in front of these crowds you either need a funny photo of a grumpy looking cat or an awesome social media plugins. Here’s our shortlist of the 5 best social media plugins on the market. We’ll start the list with a quick review of what’s available.
|Software||Starting From||Best Thing About It||Biggest Problem|
|Social Warfare||$29 a year||Bunch of great features.||None.|
|Monarch Plugin||$89 a year||Easy to setup and attractive buttons.||Not available as a standalone plugin.|
|Mashshare||$39 a year||Mashable style social share buttons.||None.|
|Easy Social Share||$20 lifetime||Lots of features.||Confusing interface.|
|Sumo||$30 a month||More than just a social share platform.||Expensive.|
We’ve tested all of the plugins that we reviewed in this post. Doing this takes a bit more time for us, but I think it gives you a better insight into which social media plugin to choose. Enough said, let’s get started with our roundup of the best social media sharing plugin.
1. Social Warfare
Social Warfare Pro is the best social media sharing plugin on the market by a mile. Well if you’re not feeling British, by a kilometer. For a start the plugin is more flexible than a Swiss Army Knife created by a Yoga instructor (that would make it a yogi knife?). Here’s a quick summary of the best features:
- Mobile ready social media buttons
- Pinterest images: add custom images to your share button
- Custom tweets: write your own Tweets for your content
- Shareable quotes: Twitter friendly quotes
- Content protection: prevents people adding their optin forms over your content
Aside from the social media buttons, arguably the best feature of Social Warfare Pro is the ability to define a custom Pinterest image that your audience can share. It’s a feature that will help you get more traffic from Pinterest. You can use it alongside Pinterest automation software to get more traffic to your site.
Other nice touches include the ability to write the metadata for content shared over other social networks like Twitter and Facebook (because the appearance of what people share is an important factor in how many people click that link to view your content). You can read more in our full review of the Social Warfare Pro.
2. Monarch Plugin
Monarch is my second favourite social media plugin (I used it before moving over to Social Warfare). The plugin has features like a social scroll box, social lightbox and social share for images. That said I’ve never used any of these features as using them would come at the expense of growing my email list.
What I really like about the Monarch plugin are the attractive flat design social share buttons. With Monarch you can choose what social buttons appear over your content, where they appear (to the right of your content or under the featured image) and define when the share count appears. In addition to this you have the social media follow buttons with the same design that you can place in the sidebar widget.
The main downside of Monarch is the pricing. Unfortunately Monarch is not a standalone social media plugin. You can only get Monarch with the Elegant Themes package. It starts from $89 a year and includes access to 87 premium WordPress themes. That makes it quite expensive if you just want the plugin.
Mashshare is a WordPress social share plugin with the social share buttons with the same appearance as on Mashable. The name of the plugin is terrible, but these in your face social buttons are pretty popular on viral sites. I’ll quickly run over the best features of the plugin below:
- Social share buttons that look like those on Mashable
- Sticky share bar above your content
- Like after share button
Mashshare has a lot of other features, but the main point is… MASHSHARE GIVES YOU THE POWER TO CREATE MASHABLE STYLE SOCIAL BUTTONS. If that’s what you’re looking for then purchase the plugin. And the sticky share bar is pretty cool.
You can use Easy Social Share to do just about anything. You can split test your social share buttons, place them in up to 22 different locations and choose between 45+ social media sites.
Having so many options to customise the plugin is great in theory. The problem of course is that you have to make these options intuitively accessible through the UI. Unfortunately, the developers didn’t manage to do this. As a result Easy Social Share uses none of the Apple style minimal design.
Using this WordPress social media plugin feels like navigating a budget store going through a closing down sale. There’s a definite learning curve. It will attract the geeky who enjoy the chance to customize their design, but will be too much for most weekend style bloggers.
Sumo is more than just a WordPress social media plugin. The tool is a complete business solution for your website. You can use Sumo to grow youe email list, track what people do on your site with heatmaps, get more social media shares and more besides.
Anyway, social media shares…
Unlike Easy Social Share, Sumo comes with a beginner friendly learning curve. Once the plugin is installed on your site you just click to select where the social share buttons should appear and what social share buttons to use. That’s it, and really it’s all you need from a good social media plugin.
The downside is the pricing. Sumo costs $30 a month, which is fine given that Sumo is a one-stop shop software toolkit. However it’s expensive if all you’re looking for is a social media plugin. There’s a freemium version that you can use when you’re just getting started, but it won’t last long if you’re serious about growing your website.
5. Few Final Thoughts
Pretty much every social media plugin does the same thing. The only major difference between most of them is the user interface and the appearance of the social share icons. That said, I do have a favorite social media plugin on this list; Social Warfare. The ability to add custom social share images to your post makes this plugin a real ‘no brainer.’
For more useful tools for online business owners, check out our guide to the best video optin forms, and blog title generator. You might also want to check out our roundup of the best gamified pop ups.
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