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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.

Disclosure: Our content is reader-supported. This means if you click on some of our links, then we may earn a commission. See how WPBeginner is funded, why it matters, and how you can support us.

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Reader Interactions

123 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. What social media plugin do you use on this site? Because it looks different from you floating social share bar?

  2. I’ve just installed the plugin. Looks nice. Is there a way to have to bar at the bottom of the post? It seems better sense to have it there. People are going to share a post once they’ve read it and think there’s value – I don’t want to rely on them scrolling all the way back to the top just to share!

  3. I have installed, activated and added Facebook to the ‘enabled social services’ box. I don’t have a Twitter user account so left that part blank. I saved the settings but the Facebook tab does not appear on my website! Did I miss something? Thanks

  4. Your instructions say, “Next, add your twitter ID in the field …”
    I do not have a Twitter account myself. Can I not use this plugin without joining Twitter? (I am on Facebook and LinkedIn.)

  5. I would like to use this pluging, but i can´t find a way to change the bakground colour…Mi web it´s not white.

  6. I would like to use this pluging, but i can´t find a way to change the bakground colour…Mi web it´s not white

    • Try adding this in your theme’s stylesheet:

      #fsb-social-bar {
          border-bottom: 1px solid #f1f1f1;
          border-top: 1px solid #f1f1f1;
          padding: 10px 0;
          margin: 0px 0 20px 0;
          float: left;
          background: #222;
          position: relative;
          clear: both;
      }
      

      Admin

  7. How can I turn off the display showing the number of times it has been shared? I do not want the count of shares to be shown.

  8. Hi, nice plugin. I’m having an issue though, when I use the “pin it” button, it crops the photo. How can I avoid that?

  9. Just wanted to give a heads up that your Floating Social Bar plugin was causing issues with my WP-Bold theme. It would remove the excerpt from the widget that I used to display related content in the sidebar. The title was there, but only on the single.php would the excerpt disappear. Solostream support mentioned that I should say something. I switched to another plugin because of it, but would much rather use the Floating Social Bar.

    Thanks!

  10. 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?

  11. 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!

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

    • 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.

      Admin

  13. 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.

  14. 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!

  15. 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.

  16. Lots of people like me having problems with your floating bar not working. Do you check your support comments? I guess only option is to assume that since you don’t address the reasons why your floating bar does not work, it must be broken and I must look for another solution. (Sad face)

  17. Hi, thanks for sharing this plugin. Whenever I click on ‘Like’ on the floating social bar, it pops up a window for me to share to my friends. But the window is cut off, making only the left side visible. It only happens to the Facebook Like button and not to G+. Do you know how to fix this?

    • Brian, try adding this to your style sheet or your theme’s custom CSS box:

      /* to fix cropping of fb post-like popup*/
      .fb-like iframe {
      max-width: inherit !important;
      }

      I was having the same problem and this worked immediately!

  18. I absolutely loved this plugin. I made few changes myself to make it better for my blog.

    I am also using Sticky Header by ThematoSoup. So when the sticky header is scrolled down the floating social bar overlapping perfectly.

    Problem is the background of the bar and fsb-sprite image.
    So I edited the css of this plugin to remove background color of the bar and removed background of fsb-sprite image.

    You can see that working on any post of my blog. My blog: Techpingo[dot]com.

    My question: In the free version an image is used as buttons and the counters are placed properly. But how can I use customized version with actual buttons like yours in “wpbeginner.com” blog and sister blog “list25.com” .

    Please tell me how to do it but don’t say me no.

  19. Hi,

    Just wanted to know if the bar could be disabled for mobile devices as social sharing is native on iOS etc. If yes, then how.

    Apologies, if you have already addressed the question in conversations before, I gave cursory glance could not find anyone on this.

    Thanks

  20. Hey i have installed it on my website and it is working great. I want to change the background color of the sharing bar so that it will match with my blog’s bg color. I have tried in CSS file but did not succeeded. can anyone help me how to do it.? Thanks

    • Muhammad, you might try making your own fsb-sprite.png file with a transparent background. This file is located in the theme’s images folder and currently the button images are on a white background. You’ll need an image editing program that supports a transparent canvas, like Adobe Fireworks.

  21. Hi, we are getting a redirect loop on the pinterest button, all others seem to work ok. Any ideas what we might be doing wrong?

    • Its working fine on our test site. Please try disabling other social media plugins and see if this works. If it does work then please notify us about the plugin that was conflicting.

      Admin

      • Hi, thanks. Does the pinterest button on our site work for you? – http://digitalvillas.com/portfolio/dvr43-modern-fantasy-villa/

        The only other social plugin on that theme is the ‘Facebook Social Plugin Widgets’ so we have added the plugin to a new demo site we are making to test it out, this site uses a different theme and has no other social media plugins at all, it is on the same hosting though. We get the same response from the pinterest button.

        On this page you dont have pinterest so we cant test it, is there another site you have it on we can test please?

        Many Thanks.

  22. Great information about how to add a floating social share bar in wordpress?
    I was looking for the information and I got the answer.

  23. Hi, I have a question about the facebook like. When you open this up, you get a share on facebook box, as expected. But if you have multiple facebook pages, how can you direct the share to a specific page, ie personal vs business page. This is a recurrent theme with facebook shares and likes. Any thoughts?
    Thanks
    Paul

  24. I have a question. Let’s say you enable this new floating social bar, what happens to all those prior posts you have out in the world or in your blog, enabled with jetpack social sharing. Do those social buttons disappear from those posts?

  25. I would like to use the new plugin, BUT

    is it alright to install it on a wordpress site that has been customized with different/unique graphics and “navigational icons” were added to the sub header??? *
    (I had someone do this for me)*

    Any kind of info or help on this would be greatly appreciated!

  26. Hi,

    Thank you wpbeginner for creating such an awesome plugin. I installed it and realized it wasn’t floating, deactivated almost all plugins and found the culprits while activating them one by one. Two plugins that conflict with this one are: Facebook TrafficPop™ for WordPress, and WordPress Like Locker; same author from codecanyon.net. Do you guys have any idea how to fix it.

  27. Nice plugin

    One observation : you should remove the white background on the sprite.png so we could tweak the background without having a disgracing white border around the elements.

    For the rest nothing to say, great work

  28. Just installed it.. feeling great.
    i installed it because of two reasons
    its unique
    you are reliable

  29. Thank you for this beautiful plugin. I am having one issue: If I activate the plugin, when clicking at a post, I get an access denied message from my htaccess (I protected /wp-admin directory). If I do not enter any credentials and click cancel, the page and the plugin loads and everything looks normal. Does your plugin require access to /wp-admin folder?

  30. I didn´t like me,, because i need the option to send by mail,, and this plug-in didn’t had it!

  31. Hello , great work with this plugin and in general
    I have a question .
    Is there a way to add my post rating php code in the bar , so it will float with the social buttons too .
    It will be a nice future :)

  32. Perfect timing! I just deleted a social sharing plugin that was giving me serious crawling and indexing issues. Thank you so much. The best things in life really are free. I’m happy to make a donation and will be looking into your other paid products and services in future…you rock!

  33. Hi,

    The instructions on this page say:

    ” Next, add your twitter ID in the field in the following format @wpbeginner.”

    The instructions on the Settings page for the plugin say:

    “Your twitter username when visitors retweet your posts (no @ symbol).”

    Thanks in advance for clarifying this.

    – Greg

  34. Thank you for this plugin. I always appreciated that your social bar didn’t cover the post text while I was reading on an iPad, while many other plugins do. I also appreciate all your many tutorials; when I need to know how to do something with WordPress, your site is usually the first site I search, even before a general Google search.

  35. Are there any plans to create an option to disable the number of shares display? For now I’m not activating it because of the big fat zeros. Will activate when there’s an option or I have decent numbers. ;-)

    • Yes, in our next update which should hopefully go live later today, it will automatically hide the count if it is 0. If the count is higher then 0, then it will display.

      Admin

  36. This plugin is exactly what I need for my newly launched blog. Unfortunately, the row of 0 shares is depressing. Is there any thought to making the counters an option?

  37. Is there a way to customize it so it looks just like the way you have it on here? I installed it, but the font is different, it’s more spaced out between the buttons, and there isn’t the line dividers :)

    • The customization on this site are done to match our design. We use a font called Oswald which has to be loaded first in the design before it can be used by the bar. It doesn’t make sense to load an external font that doesn’t match site design for thousands of users who use this plugin.

      In short, if you would like to do that, then you can override the plugin CSS styles.

      Admin

      • Thanks guys. This is an amazing plugin. Can you let us know how to add the line dividers like the one on your page here and change the font in css? I’m a newbie and don’t know css but i’m willing to give it a shot. What line in css should be changed to add the line dividers and change the fonts?

        Thanks in advance and thanks for the best social media plugin out there.

  38. Is there somewhere to see example of what it looks like and how it works?

    I’ve tried all the rest and none worked to our satisfaction. Would love to see if this is the one for us.

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