If you’re not running a WordPress blog, then social sharing plugins might be out of your reach. While there’s plenty of those available for free download, there’s also plenty of jQuery plugins for social media sharing and social optimization. jQuery is best known as an animation framework for doing all kinds of cool things with your website. There’s really very little that jQuery can’t do. Social media is the second most important asset in marketing after the content itself. If you’re not using social media to promote your content, then you’re clearly leaving many untapped opportunities on the table.
Nowadays, there is so much versatility in how people share their content. The leading media publisher websites use their own techniques. Therefore, there is no one universal approach to adding social sharing buttons to blogs and websites. It helps to have options, and jQuery surely delivers plenty of those!
Social Share Privacy
User privacy is a popular topic of discussion among web experts who have grown tired of how social networks track information about website users, oftentimes without their direct consent. Even if nobody is clicking on the social share buttons on your website, the social platforms are able to track information. While not an immediate threat, it’s still uncomfortable to know that social platforms are doing this. So, a number of developers are taking it upon themselves to find a solution.
The Social Share Privacy jQuery plugin addresses those concerns directly. The idea it’s built upon is straightforward. Instead of getting the usual colorful social icons, you can add gray icons that act as static placeholders. Only until the user clicks on one of the icons will any information be sent out to the social network.
So, what happens is that you give your users the control over sharing their information elsewhere. Once clicking on a gray icon, they understand that their information will be shared with that particular social network. This plugin users can choose from a range of options. These include Disqus, Flattr, Hacker News, and all of the traditional social platforms known today.
Most webmasters seem to think that social share buttons need to be flashy. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. When it comes to online content, the key component is quality. Quality content naturally results in social shares, so it won’t matter how or where you place your buttons. If people like something, they will be happy to pass it forward. This isn’t the case for viral websites, though, since such platforms usually attract millions of likes anyway.
Social Likes integrates a selection of three color schemes and three alignment positions for social sharing buttons on your site. Select from classic, flat, or traditional transparent layouts. Then, position your buttons horizontally, vertically, or as a single share button. You can also choose to show or not to show the social share counts, to provide a Twitter username, or to switch off certain networks altogether. This plugin has a friendly user interface. Use it as a standalone or as a built-in for your next web platform project.
SocialShare is an “only buttons” type of sharing script. It’s nothing complicated, and the execution is straightforward. The design resembles a traditional call-to-action button. Despite the design limitations, you can still add share counters to each of your buttons. Among the 100+ social networks you can select from are Blogger, Digg, Chiq, Qzone, Blip, Baidu, and Fark.
Its implementation is awfully easy. Customize the title, text, image, and url values, and output the buttons in whichever content that you prefer. In general, you won’t see media publishers use a plugin like this. However, if you’re a writer and/or a journalist with a minimalistic approach to design, then this could end up being your golden ticket, and not just because of its lightweight buttons.
jsSocials has had a run for a couple of years now. It is finally reaching a phase in its development where the buttons have become perfectly designed to be appropriate even for the most complex of designs. It’s amazing how far developers are willing to go to provide the open-source community with widgets and plugins such as this one. jsSocials users can select from four predefined designs optimized for maximum design visibility in a multitude of situations. Choose from flat, classic, minimal, or plain designs to best suit your needs. Don’t worry about the buttons’ sizes as the plugin will accommodate pretty much any result that you’re trying to achieve.
goodshare.js is a practical jQuery library for displaying modern social sharing buttons on your blog, publishing platform, or website. Through customization, anyone can use this plugin through a content delivery network. You can optimize the appearance in a number of different ways. Further, you can integrate it with search engine requirements, including fast performance. You can add share counts using the API from Open Share Count. The colors for the buttons reflect the color scheme of the individual social networks. Templating is rather easy, and you can add custom buttons for specific networks through a traditional “button” or “ahrefs” style of tagging.
A noticeable trend in social sharing widgets involves jumbo-sized social buttons with an added counter. These widgets are often for websites that create content for the purpose of being shared on social media extensively. These websites put the emphasis on sharing rather than the content. Currently, jumboShare supports Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Buffer buttons. These are essentially the networks that your readers would share your content with if you run an international website. A counter is available through the Social Share Count API from donReach. The actual jQuery source code is only 70 lines big. So, you will be adding significant performance improvements to your existing sharing widgets if you use jumboShare.
Simple Sharing Buttons Generator
Not in the mood to mess around with custom scripts and configurations? Well then, the easiest solution is to use a generator, and we’ve found one just for you. The process is rather simple. First, select a style of icons that best reflects your website’s design. Next, choose the networks you want to display sharing buttons for (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, WordPress, etc.). Finally, you have to specify your website info, like the URL and the page description. You may also provide your Twitter username. While this approach seems painful at first, you only have to do it once to grab the configuration parameters for setting up all your other URLs. Because this is an open-source project, anyone can contribute something to it through a revision.
At first glance, the Sharrre plugin doesn’t look like much, but you’ll quickly realize how constructive it really is. The features that stand out are the configuration and personalization options. It also provides a solid performance optimization that doesn’t slow your pages down. Sharrre has a library of different demo examples. Some are traditional, while others resemble a jumbo-like sharing widget that provides a big share counter at the top of the widget. For data scientists, there’s an option to show social shares in a pie chart fashion. If you’re a technical blogger, the documentation outlines how you can configure each individual button with custom settings.
Not many social sharing widgets talk about the performance load that they put on the site. It’s often not because of the code that’s powering the plugin but because of how long it can take for certain social sharing websites to load in the background.
The approach these days has been slightly different. It applies external counter APIs to load sharing data externally, but it can be modified to cache the results, too. The buttons themselves are designed locally, so you don’t have to fetch data from Facebook or Twitter. Another option is to lazy-load your sharing buttons if you do enjoy using the official ones. This way, the buttons will automatically show up on the site regardless. However, to share a post, users will have to hover over a particular button and it will lazy load at that moment. This, in turn, saves you any external performance points that you would lose out on otherwise. The buttons use custom classes to load. So, check before you assign a class that won’t overlap with existing classes on your style sheet.
Share42 is another grounded generator of social buttons for websites of any type. First, you have to decide on the size of the buttons, of which there are three choices. Then, you have more than 40+ social network buttons to choose from that you know will perform well on your website. After that, you need to work through the custom options. Do you want your buttons to be vertical sticky or plain horizontal? After making your choice, you can either download the final script or preview it in your browser.
AddThis has appeared on Colorlib on multiple occasions. We outlined this platform as one of the best social media sharing tools for global-style websites. It’s also a reputable social engagement platform for business owners online. The success of AddThis goes back many years, way before developers were spending time and money to build custom scripts. A large portion of that existing user base has never left AddThis for anything else. It was only in the last three years that the developers and designers working for AddThis started to make a switch to modern features that reflect current standards in the web.
From simple floating buttons to carefully integrated buttons for your visual content, you can choose to show buttons anywhere on your site with only a few configuration options. The range of social platforms is endless. So, your content will naturally get the chance to be exposed to a larger audience.
Simple Share Buttons
Did you ever plan on investing for a social sharing script? Once you go through the demo of Simple Share Buttons, you might consider doing so. This mobile-first and responsive script provides a selection of more than 10 unique and most popular social networks out there. Use custom shortcodes to display your sharing buttons anywhere on the design of the site. If you’re keen on keeping track of your performance, you can opt to track the clicks that are being sent your way. This way, you can understand how each post is being shared across which networks. It does work for WordPress, so you can take it for a spin without an investment. If you do invest, you get even more options for customizing the script for a personalized experience.
Developers built Shareaholic more than seven years ago to test the waters for social exposure on the web. It quickly grew into a self-sustainable platform that reaches 500,000,000 users on a monthly basis. Hundreds of thousands of websites, blogs, and content platforms depend on Shareaholic for precise sharing buttons that deliver a stellar user experience. Before you get access to the actual widget, you have to go through a series of options to personalize it.
The process is as follows. First, you choose from a theme and a headline you’d like to use. Then, you have to decide the button position, layout, size, and final alignment. Also, choose whether to show counters or not. You can customize all icon colors or use the default that each network uses generally. Through a single click, you can add or remove social services to tailor the sharing experience to your audience’s needs.
donReach Social Tools
We did a brief mention of donReach on their versatile API for collecting share counts, but did you know that they also provide their own social share buttons? These responsive mobile-friendly bad boys will add a unique twist to your website design, and since so few websites are using these buttons at the moment, it could really add that sense of authenticity that you need in these modern publishing times. First you select from a drag&drop interface the way that you want to position your buttons, whether you want to show shares first or last, and you can position each social network in its own position, with the ability to limit the buttons to a certain number, and show the other buttons using a plus sign. You can choose from icons, long and short button styles.
Social Warfare is limited to WordPress websites only, but that shouldn’t stop you from consider this concise sharing plugin for yourself. Built with the vision of fast performance and easy social sharing, the Social Warfare plugin has become somewhat of an framework in the recent years. Their latest version pins down any common issues and problems that people would experience when adding sharing to their content sites, but that isn’t the only thing that Social Warfare excels at. Their button design is unmatched in terms of quality, and you can use custom widgets to create things like Popular Posts widgets based on the number of shares that your posts are getting. Whether you want to put your buttons at the top, middle or bottom part of your content, it only takes a single shortcode to make it happen.
Premium jQuery Plugins for Social Sharing
So that’s about the number of free jQuery social sharing plugins that you will find anywhere on GitHub, or personal resources published by developers. Since majority of websites these days are run on WordPress, mostly people use the WordPress plugin directory to find social plugins for them, while more professional websites will usually code their own custom scripts to integrate with a particular design ideology. There are more ways to utilize social media for growth though, and they don’t always come from the same place (such as the free market), so in light of that we will shift over the focus to premium grade jQuery scripts, plugins and libraries that will add extra special functionality to your websites, within the scope of social media.
jQuery Social Share Buttons
Sitting at 1,200 sales this script has earned its reputation rightfully. You might have seen some websites run a copy version of this script, but the original is what you’re after. Whether you’re planning to create sticky floating buttons, or want to implement a toolbar, this plugin does it all. All button alignments include social counters, so readers can further understand how trustworthy your website is on social media based on the volume of shares that it is attracting. It’s simple enough to use that the script will do a lot of the configuration options automatically, like grabbing the URL of the page within which the script is sitting at. For the price of a few donuts, you can’t go wrong with this one.
RingShare is a sharing widget built within a circle element that says ‘Share’ in the middle. Now, thinking about it and looking at the demo, it’s fairly obvious that you wouldn’t want to use this widget on top of your paragraphs, but.. it could turn out to be a huge success factor if you start using it on top of your images, which would make it easier for others to share your visual content. The script works that it overlaps any given element on the page with the actual Share button, once a user rolls over the button a circle of share buttons quickly appears. It’s a neat concept, and a large number of customers indicate that this concept does work in the real world.
Coming across a plugin as powerful as this is rare, and the fact that Daniel Paul has earned himself 500 sales on this one, it just speaks for itself. Share+ stands out because it uses a unique social sharing experience that displays a one of a kind user experience. You put the plugin as a single sharing button on your site, and upon clicking the ‘Share This’ button a modal window pops open that overlays the background of the web page, and shows within the modal box a range of social sharing icons. This spectacular design was made possible thanks to the use of jQuery, CSS3 and HTML5 within a combination of the developers thorough understanding of modern web development.
jSocial from Sitebase is killing it with nearly 1k active sales, and the numbers are growing quickly. This cute little display of buttons can be launched through a few lines of code, on top of including the actually library in your code ecosystem. Despite working with famous social networks, it’s also compatible with Yahoo, Live, Blogmarks, Bligg, MySpace and plenty more to keep your audience engaged where social media sharing is involved.
Share This Image
Not all sharing widgets have to be about sharing your web page links only, and during the last several years there has been an expansive growth of how content gets shared on social media, and amongst the most prominent trends has been the process of sharing visual images, whether the featured image or images within the content, because social networks have now in-built support tools for showing images in a beautiful featured manner.
Share This Image is a handy jQuery script for adding a ‘share this image’ button to your visual content, whenever a visitor will scroll over an image they will get the usual style sharing buttons for sharing the image, rather than the link alone, on their social media. Right now the plugin supports sites like Pinterest, Facebook, Digg, Tumblr, Google Plus, Twitter, and a few others. Through the settings you can specifiy the minimum image size which can be shared, and there’s an option to customize the title, and description of each image that user wants to share.
jQuery Social Media Tabs
How are you displaying your social media streams to your readers, are you doing it at all? The default method for showcasing social media presence would be through plugins and scripts that only show the standalone button of the social network, whereas with jQuery Social Tabs you can create an actual dynamic tabs widget within which your social media activity shows up in real-time, further encouraging visitors to follow or subscribe to your pages. Whether you want to display it as a static widget (anywhere on your site) or use the sliding module to have the widget scroll as the user is navigating the site, within each of the tabs you can insert all of your prominent social network profiles and the plugin will automatically render the latest content from your feeds. It works for YouTube as well as it does for LinkedIn and Twitter, and other famous social platforms.
Social Cards is a unique concept for showing off social sharing buttons (cards) on your pages. They’re not small buttons, but rather an integrated box-style widgets that will greatly compliment landing pages and any other designs where you’re using a large scale set of elements. These buttons have beautiful designs with gradient colors, which show the main logo of the social platform, while giving you room for a small description and the actual sharing widget input. All of the social scripts are loaded in the background at once, so you’re saving up some points for performance, you can configure the script to show up in your modal boxes if that’s your thing.
Can’t say that we are big fans of social media lockers for content, but there is definitely a major appeal for them. The fact that this Social Locker has 1,200 sales does speak for itself. What are they anyway, social lockers? These widgets are created to lock a user out of your content pages and content rows unless they share your content on social media, this can be a quick way to garner up massive amounts of social media exposure, but it might come at the cost of visitors leaving your site before reading the full page, and Google is definitely improving its algorithm to crack down on sites that block users from viewing the content fully. However, the appeal is there and perhaps your site is in a particular niche where this kind of a script would be made useful. Viral websites could definitely put this plugin to use.
Developers are busy trying to come up with new ways to improve social sharing for all websites concerned, and ‘Click to Tweet’ plugins have grown in popularity rapidly. These tiny scripts are basically letting other users to mark a particular content area, and automatically share it on Twitter. For example, you might be adding custom quotes or important outlines for all that you’re sharing, and rather than having the user come up with an idea for a snippet to share on Twitter, you could provide that snippet yourself using Tweetable. It’s not an overly new concept, but certainly one that can greatly increase the way that people share your content on Twitter.
Brands, small businesses, and even bloggers themselves are now exposing themselves on all major social platforms where there are hundreds of millions of active users. When Instagram first started out, nobody thought much of it, and bloggers were resistant to use the platform in order to drive traffic and sales, but times have changed and Instagram has become more friendly towards allowing its users to share links within the Instagram post directly, which means that bloggers are becoming more aware of the fact that Instagram can be used as means for growth and further content exposure. The Instagram Feed is a jQuery widget that adds a stunning Instagram post feed to your website, allowing you to customize and edit the styling scheme to whichever style that fits your website best.