Published on April 23rd, 2013 | by jp0
How To Connect WordPress To Social Networks
WordPress is an unbelievably powerful tool that helps webmasters of all experience levels to design amazing websites that can compete with even their largest competitors. However, webmasters should never forget that we live in a world in which all content is interconnected and instantly shareable among various websites and that visitors expect to be able to communicate with you and their friends at all times. In order to do that, webmasters need to connect their websites with social networking platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter, and make sure that all content is shareable to those networks. Fortunately, WordPress is well-designed to handle this kind of inter connectivity and provides webmasters with literally hundreds of plugins and other tools specifically crafted for connecting WordPress to social networks.
WordPress users who don’t want to deal with direct links or other “manual labor” actions will be happy to know that there are hundreds of plugins that can instantly connect an entire WordPress website with multiple social networks. Plugins like Social Login, Social Login and Sharing by Janrain, and ShareThis are all well-equipped for allowing visitors to not only login to your WordPress website via their social networking IDs, but also share the content they find on your website with their friends. Furthermore, plenty of WordPress themes have social networking features built-in, allowing webmasters to simply enter their social networking URLs and have their entire website automatically connected to their social networking feeds.
While still usually provided by plugins, widgets allow webmasters to insert social networking features into any sidebar of their WordPress website. By placing social networking features in a sidebar, webmasters can ensure that their visitors have constant access to the website’s official social networking pages. Like plugins, widgets generally allow WordPress users to simply insert the URLs to their social networking profiles without dealing with links or codes. Social Profiles, Simple Social Icons, and Captain Social are all good social networking widgets for WordPress sites.
For those who prefer to get down and dirty with their WordPress sites in order to customize things exactly the way they want them, WordPress’s HTML editor and theme/plugin editor allows webmasters to insert direct links to their social networking profiles anywhere on a WordPress website. While a direct link won’t provide any cool features, such as the ability to share content or stream content from one site to another, they do allow webmasters to insert a link to any customized icon or even text. Direct links can be inserted by either adding a link in the Visual editor or by manually inserting the link with the following code structure:
<a href=”www.socialnetworkofyourchoice.com”><img src=http://www.example.com/wherever-the-picture-is-located”>Optional – any text you want to enter</a>
In addition to linking a WordPress site to a social networking platform, many webmasters forget that they need to connect their social network to their WordPress site by promoting it on their profile and/or in their feed. By directing your existing social network followers to your WordPress website, you can draw in more traffic and you get the additional bonus of knowing that those visitors are already following you on your social network.