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Speed up WordPress by Soft Loading Social Buttons Like TechCrunch

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Speed up WordPress by Soft Loading Social Buttons Like TechCrunch

This is a guest post by Rob Summerfield of Newsgrape

Sharing your article-content on social media sites is essential for building up a large readership and is nowadays often seen as equally important as SEO. Share and tweet buttons can already increase your hits in the article overview because A) it is common that users already feel like sharing content as soon as they read the overview and description B) the number of shares often helps users decide whether or not to they want to continue reading an article. However, the current wave of social-buttons also carries along new challenges and problems for your blogs performance. In this article, we will show you how to speed up your WordPress by soft loading social buttons like TechCrunch.

The Problem (Slow Front Pages)

Let’s assume you have added Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest buttons to your blog and are displaying 8 articles per page. In this case it’s safe to say that there might be 32 HTTP queries sent to the different external sites, leading to a deceleration of your blog, which not only affects the user experience (UX) of your users but could also cost you valuable positions on major search engines.

So how can you work against that request-overkill? Easy – don’t start loading the social buttons until your users actually need them. Similar to how TechCrunch does it.

TechCrunch Style Social Media Buttons Loading

You would probably think that this is super hard, but it really isn’t. There is this cool script called Socialite.js. If you are a tech savvy person, then you can simply follow the directions on the script’s page and do all of this manually.

For all those who don’t like dealing with code, thankfully there is a plugin for that. WP Socialite Plugin uses the socialite.js script and allows you to have social media buttons like TechCrunch.

First thing you need to do is install and activate the WP Socialite Plugin. Then go under Settings » Discussions page to customize the settings to your discretion.

WP Socialite Plugin

Conclusion: The internet is getting faster and faster, the performance demands of users and search-engines are rising and bloggers have to – consequently – respond to those changes. I hope you enjoyed my ideas on optimizing your social-buttons and therefore blog performance, of course.

Rob Summerfield is copywriter and community manager at the social text platform Newsgrape. Having worked with different agencies and at Cannes International Festival of Creativity, Rob is an award winning writer focused on creative solutions for blogging and online content management.


This post was written by a guest contributor. You can see their details in the post above. If you'd like to write a guest post for WPBeginner, then check out our Write for WPBeginner page for details. We'd love to share your tips with our community.

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Comments

  1. Thomas Lartin says:

    Thanks, I’m going to try this out.

  2. Mike Mahaffey says:

    Thanks for the article……I’m not tech savvy at all, but I desperately needed a social plugin that is fast to load and easy to manipulate.
    This is The best one for speed and ease of use that I have found.

  3. Dilawer Pirzada says:

    The is broken! My site got errors, using this plugin.

  4. avery says:

    so how can we customize the those social media account? i dun want to tweet thru wpsocialise.. and can i add pin and remove in?

    • Editorial Staff says:

      You can use the socialte.js script which is available and is not very hard to work with.

  5. Affan Ruslan says:

    This plugin had a very bad setting page. No twitter username can be set to, even when you tweet something, it will show via @Wpsocialite at the of your tweet, no option to turn it off or change to other username. That’s so bad.

  6. Gautam Doddamani says:

    great tutorial but we can actually make use of simple jquery to load buttons after the page has fully rendered thereby decreasing the load time but still giving the users the real social buttons instead of disguising em!

    i see the trending bar is back on this blog…nyc :)

    • Editorial Staff says:

      I think you missed the point of this post. Sure you can load the scripts at the bottom of the page, but nonetheless it is STILL loading. Using soft-loading the scripts DO NOT load on the initial pageload. This will increase your speed much more than just placing the scripts in the footer.

  7. Jason says:

    Yep, plugin broke my site and caused the mobile theme to kick on. It’s also not listed as compatible with the current version of WordPress. Going back to Shareaholic.

  8. Regiosfera says:

    The plugin broke my theme =(

    • Editorial Staff says:

      How so? We only tried it with Twenty Eleven and it seemed to work just fine.

      • waqas says:

        why don’t you make a demo site for all of wp-enhancing tutorials??

        • Editorial Staff says:

          It’s much easier to do when we are doing code demo’s… but plugin demos would be hard. We will end up having hundreds of plugins on the demo.

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