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How to Add a Floating Social Share Bar in WordPress

Last updated on by
Elegant Themes
How to Add a Floating Social Share Bar in WordPress

A lot of you have asked us about the floating social share bar that we use on WPBeginner. In the past, our reply was simply that it was a custom plugin that we created for our site. That usually followed up with a question what is the best social media plugin that you would recommend? Sadly, there was not a single one that met our standards. We only recommend what we use or would use. After much thought and consideration, we have decided to release our floating social share bar plugin for WPBeginner users and the greater WordPress community. In this article, we will show you how to add a horizontal floating social share bar in WordPress.

Benefits

Most social media plugins for WordPress are bloated. Partially because they support all sorts of social networks. The other part is because social media scripts are inherently slow. Well we fixed both of those issues in this plugin. First, we are only supporting the major social networks: Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.

Second, we delay the loading of social scripts until the user actually brings their mouse over, so your initial page load time is the fastest that it can be. In the past people simply put placeholder images, but we took it one step further. We show the cached version of the count which refreshes at an interval you decide (default 30 minutes). So when the user sees your share bar, it looks exactly the same as it would if the social media scripts are enabled.

Simply put, this floating social bar allows us to maximize our social media visibility without impacting our site speed.

How to Add the Floating Social Share Bar on Your Site

First thing you need to do is install and activate the Floating Social Bar plugin. Upon activation, the plugin will add a new menu under Settings » Floating Social Bar.

Floating Social Bar Admin Screeen

To add the floating social share bar to your blog posts, simply drag and drop the available social buttons in the enabled social services area in the order you would like to display them. Next, add your twitter ID in the field in the following format wpbeginner. Remember not to include the @ symbol.

The title for the share bar will only show up if there is enough space for it. If you use all sharing buttons, then chances are that you can’t get the title due to width constraints.

You can choose the post types you want to add the floating social share bar such as posts, pages, or any other custom post type.

The last field is the cache interval which is what allows this plugin to be the most efficient. We recommend that you don’t change this number unless you know what you are doing. Here is how it works. By default, this plugin gets the social media count from the APIs and store it in a cache for 30 minutes. It only gets the count for the post when its loaded to reduce server load. For example, if no one visits your two year old post, then this plugin will not waste your precious server resources for that post. It only gets the count right when a user visits the post or page.

That’s it. Now when you go to your post page, there will be a horizontal floating share bar.

Get Floating Social Bar for your site. It’s free, and please do let us know your thoughts. We have tested this plugin for over a year on WPBeginner, but we always appreciate feedback. To help us out, you can go to our WordPress.org page for Floating Social Bar and leave us a rating.

We hope that this article helped you get the coveted floating social share bar to your WordPress site. Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below. Lastly, don’t forget to help us out by spreading the word.


Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress lovers led by Syed Balkhi. Page maintained by Syed Balkhi.

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Comments

  1. Jon Brown says:

    Are you still planning to release a version that includes comment counts like this site does? Even if not ready for release is that code public?

  2. Jorge says:

    Hi! Thanks for the great plugin. I have some questions when people press like or +1 do they share the post in my blog too? How can people share my content from the social bar? What is the capital of North Dakota ;) Thanks again!

  3. Julius says:

    Great plugin, but unfortunately it consumes lots of resources. P3 plugin shows that it consumes 51% of all my plugins (I have 12 plugins).

    • WPBeginner Support says:

      We use it on our own sites and we are very concious about page speed. As for P3 plugin, the test results can be affected by many factors such as other services running on your server, if you are on a shared server, this will also affect results.

  4. Urmet says:

    Great plugin – I would like to know one thing – can I have it this way that the counter loads immediately – like you have it on your own page – sharing numbers are visible even if I am not hovering over the plugin.

  5. Haider says:

    Great Plugin Indeed!

    I finally activated and modified it a little to suit my theme :)

    I have a few queries:

    1. Do you plan to include the new facebook share button along with the like button ? Please consider this.
    2. Won’t it be better to handle styling with a separate CSS file rather than inline CSS ? A lot of premium themes have option for custom CSS which is added to the header; but that doesn’t work in this case. I had to modify the plugin file to change the styles.

    Thank you so much for such an awesome product!

  6. Jenn Marie says:

    Hi there! From one high-quality person to another: I see you. This plugin rocks, and I suspect it’s due to the meticulousness I see on all your stuff!

    One question: any idea why the bar is not sticky for me on iPhone (iOS7)? I’m using Point, a responsive theme. Have tried disabling other social plugins.

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