Tag - wordpress

How to Make Your WordPress Site EU Cookie Law Compliant -WPExplorer


By using cookies (information files stored in the browser that contain data specific to a website visitor) you can significantly improve user experience on your site. However, installing tracking cookies without express user consent constitutes a breach of the ePrivacy Directive 2002/58/EC (EU Cookie Law), and can result in a number of issues for European sites. This is why ensuring you make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant is so important.

In this article, we’ll delve deeper into cookies, the EU Cookie Law and what it all means for your website. We’ll also discuss how easy integrations such as the Iubenda Cookie Solution plugin can help take the hassle and guesswork out of compliance. Let’s dive in!

What Are Cookies?

First let’s cover what exactly cookies are. When it comes to websites “cookies” are not the traditional gooey goodness you’re used to – instead they’re information files stored in the browser that contain data specific to a website visitor. They contain information relevant to your experience using a website. For example, cookies might retain a user’s search history, remember login details, or make product recommendations based on previous purchases.

How Are Cookies Used in WordPress?

With WordPress cookies are mostly used to login you into a website. Currently WordPress stores a cookie upon login to verify/store your authentication (for the backend/admin panel), another cookies to indicate that your specific user account is logged in and a few other cookies to personalize how the admin panel (or even the main website) interface appears to you. Cookies are also stored when users leave a comment.

Depending on the plugins installed or third party services being used there could be more cookies scattered around your website. For example, if you’ve added a push notifications plugin or if you’re using Google Adsense that’s at least a couple more cookies on your website that you should be aware of.

How This Applies to You

Based on the info above it’s pretty safe to assume that everyone using WordPress is also using cookies. The important part here is to disclose to your readers that you’re using them. Currently in the USA, informing visitors of your use of cookies and their purpose in your privacy policy is enough (though there are state level laws that may require more detailed information). But for European based sites (and websites targeting the European market) the rules are a bit stricter.

What Is the EU Cookie Law?

Since cookies may acquire private user information (for instance if they are used for tracking) the EU Cookie Law was formulated to ensure that these details can only be acquired with a user’s consent. Although there are certain kinds of cookies that are exempt from the law, in most cases you’ll need to do the following if you use them on your site:

  • Let your users know cookies are in use
  • Tell your users what the cookies are being used for
  • Give users the option to opt in or out of being tracked by cookies

And you’ll need to do this before visitors begin using your website. Failing to comply with the EU Cookie Law could result in incurring a fine, not to mention losing the trust of your users (which can be devastating if you use your website for business).

Before you start panicking, you should know it isn’t too difficult to make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant. In fact, it’s pretty easy.

How to Make Your WordPress Site EU Cookie Law Compliant

There are three steps you’ll need to follow in order to make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant. We’ll walk through each one in turn. Along the way, we’ll also cover how the Iubenda Cookie Solution plugin can help with the process.

iubenda Cookie Solution plugin

Using this plugin, you can easily link to your cookie policy from a prominent banner on your site. Once a user is directed to the policy, they can read through instructions about how to manage their cookie preferences, and give or deny permission for their use. You have the option to link to your own previously-created cookie policy, or easily create a new one with Iubenda’s privacy and cookie policy generator. What’s more, this plugin automatically blocks cookies prior to obtaining user consent.

By combining the Iubenda Cookie Solution plugin with the Iubenda policy generation service, you can quickly and easily make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant. Let’s see how it works!

Step 1: Have a Cookie Policy In Place

Iubenda WordPress Plugin

Iubenda takes the guesswork and hassle out of creating an all-encompassing cookie policy.

Your policy document (or “extended notice”) should comprehensively detail your site’s use of cookies. In order to be compliant with the law, this document should include each of the following points.

  • A statement clearly informing users that cookies are in use on your website
  • An explanation of what cookies are
  • An explanation of what kinds of cookies are in use (by you and/or third parties)
  • A clear overview of how and why you (and/or third parties) are using cookies
  • And an explanation of how users can opt-out of having cookies placed on their device(s)

This may seem like a lot, but creating a cookie policy that address these points is necessary. If you Google “sample privacy policy” you should be able to find some easy examples to get your policy started, like this one from the Better Business Bureau.

Alternatively, you can use a service such as Iubenda to generate your policy. For this you will first need to create an account, select a pan (don’t worry – they offer a free lite plan) and then follow a few simple steps to generate your policy. Once your policy is set up, you will receive a code. Be sure to keep that code handy, as you’ll need it to add your privacy policy to your WordPress site.

Step 2: Place a Consent Banner on Your Site

iubenda Cookie Solution

The Iubenda Cookie Solution plugin enables you to generate notification banners on your site that link to your policy.

With your privacy policy ready, you’ll now need to add a consent banner (or brief notice) to your website. This should be prominently displayed so it’s the first information a user sees when they visit your site. The important information to include here is a notice that your site does use cookies as well as a link to your policy.

If you’ve created your own privacy policy page you can use any basic cookie notice plugin to add a simple statement (with links) on your homepage.

But if you’ve used Iubenda, it’s easy to use their free Cookie Solution plugin to add your cookie policy and a consent banner to your site. Navigate to Plugins > Add New in your WordPress dashboard to search for “iubenda,” then install and activate the plugin.

Install the iubenda Plugin

After activating a new tab should appear in your dashboard labeled Iubenda. Select it and a page outlining what the plugin can do for your site should be displayed. You will need to enter your Iubenda code from step 1 in order to add the cookie policy and banner to your site.

Link to Your iubenda Policy

You’ll also have the option to configure a number of settings for your cookie banner. You can select whether you want it to appear in your header or footer, and even automatically block certain scripts.

Configure Iubenda Cookie Banner Settings

Once you’ve made your selection, click on Save Changes. Your banner, and the policy it links to, will now be displayed on your site!

Step 3: Allow Users to Give Consent

As we touched on earlier, when you make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant you’ll need to give users the opportunity to accept or decline the use of cookies. If a user does not actively give their consent, you’ll need to block all scripts that install cookies. This should be triggered if a visitor selects an option to reject cookies, or if they simply fail to choose the “I accept” option.

Fortunately, most cookie consent/notice plugins offer this features and the Iubenda Cookie Solution plugin is no different. It will automatically detect and block scripts associated with cookies (including scripts from Google, Facebook, YouTube, etc) as well as enable you to manually block additional resources as you see fit.

Conclusion

User privacy is one of the biggest we security issues so far in 2018. As such, it’s more important than ever to ensure that your cookie policy and notifications are watertight. Fortunately plugins like Iubenda can make this task much easier for WordPress.

Let’s recap the three steps you’ll need to follow to comply with the EU Cookie Law before wrapping up:

  1. Have a privacy policy in place with information that your site uses cookies
  2. Display a consent banner prominently on your site with a link to your privacy policy
  3. Enable users to give consent and block cookie-installing scripts before that consent is given

Do you have any questions about EU Cookie Law compliance? Or how to make your WordPress site EU Cookie Law compliant? Let us know in the comment section below!



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15 Best Portfolio WordPress Themes in 2018


With this ever evolving digital age, the need for making our presence known online is of paramount importance. Be it on Facebook, MySpace, Google+, Flickr, etc., we have to make our presence known to stand a chance in this digital age. Sometimes, social media does not suffice. Something more personal and custom is required to showcase your talent. Be it videography, photography, art, tattoos, interior or graphic design, or whatever it is that you’d want to showcase, your work would be in a class of its own with any of the best portfolio WordPress themes that we’ve collected from all around the internet.

Always keep your portfolio and your risk at your own individual comfortable sleeping point… -Mario Gabelli

If you’re looking for something functional as it is well designed, something light to load and simple so that it doesn’t overshadow your work itself (because you don’t want prospective clients to be more impressed by the design of your portfolio site than the actual creative works you’ve compiled) we think you’re going to find something you really love right here. We’ve compiled the most promising and (in our opinion) best portfolio WordPress themes top marketplaces have to offer. So, let’s carry on to the themes!

1. Total – Creative Multi-Purpose WordPress Theme

Total - Creative Multi-Purpose Premium WordPress Theme

Total is a true multi-purpose WordPress, and it’s a great fit for creating portfolios. It comes with 45+ unique demos and counting, with more added each month. Some of the theme features include: Infinite portfolio pages, premium Layer & Revolution sliders, parallax sections, 50+ builder modules and much more. Plus Total supports many popular plugins such as WPML, BuddyPress, WooCommerce, Gravity Forms, and Events Calendar Pro among others. Total is full of potential to create beautiful and modern portfolio, photography or other creative websites.

Boxed Folio Total Theme Demo

Total Boxed Porfolio WordPress Theme Demo

Looking for a boxed design? The Total theme Boxed Folio demo shows how you can use built-in options in the Total theme to create a custom portfolio layout. Plus the quick demo installer makes it even easier to get started with any of Total’s ready made demos.

TinyFolio Total Theme Demo

Total Tinyfolio Portfolio WordPress Theme Demo

With the Total theme you can create pretty much anything, have a look at the screenshot above of the Total theme TinyFolio demo you can see another great example of why the Total theme is one of the best portfolio WordPress themes you could choose for your wbesite.

2. ePix Fullscreen Photography WordPress Theme

ePix - Fullscreen Photography WordPress Theme

A Photographer? A Graphic designer? An Illustrator? Then look no further! ePix is a minimalistic, beautiful and creative WordPress Photography Portfolio theme. This theme features responsive HTML5 code and high resolution graphics with retina display support. Some of its unique features include – a full-screen slider, stunning galleries, client login, advanced live Skin Editor, Visual Page Builder, parallax scrolling, boxed or full-width site layout and so much more.

ePix is fully compatible with the popular WooCommerce e-commerce plugin, making it perfect for self-employed artists or photographers. Just install the theme and plugin to start selling prints and stock through your own website. I don’t thin anyone would deny that ePix is one of the best portfolio WordPress themes and that it has become a standard against which other photography portfolio themes are judged.

3. ROUA Hipster Portfolio & Blogging WP Theme

ROUA - Hipster Portfolio & Blogging WP Theme

ROUA is a beautiful minimalistic and stylish WordPress portfolio theme well suited for freelancers and creative agencies. It is very light, yet will fully satisfy the needs of any graphic designer, illustrator, photographer, and is sure to create a trendy online presence. It is a simple yet fresh and easy-to-use theme suitable for any kind of creative work.

The theme is created using Bootstrap 3 front-end framework that makes it fully responsive and mobile first. The theme is extremely customizable and being based on the Redux Framework, it is very easy and convenient to do so. If you’re looking for something that is different and will make you stand out in the crowd, this is the theme you should go for!

4. Notio Deluxe Portfolio WordPress Theme

Notio - Deluxe Portfolio Theme

Notio is a clean, sophisticated and simple, yet beautiful WordPress portfolio theme. This theme is able to achieve high standards of expectation with its crafty and aesthetic design while being extremely easy to use. Some of its features include import theme options, images, sliders, posts, pages and widgets. It is ready for WordPress 4+, and it has WPML multilingual support for both your page text, and the sections of your WooCommerce store.

There are plenty of drag & drop elements, allowing for the hassle-free customization of your page. Notio is retina ready and boasts ultra-high resolution graphics. It truly is hard to describe just how good this theme looks, which is why it made it on our list of the best portfolio WordPress themes. The documentation of this theme is very extensive and informative, enough to turn any newbie into an experienced user. The same principle of adaptability applies to devices as well. Notio is entirely responsive, and it work well on tablets, smartphones, and desktop computers.

5. Pofo – Creative Portfolio & Blog WordPress Theme

Pofo - Creative Portfolio & Blog Premium WordPress Theme

Pofo is a modern, highly customizable, easy to use and fully responsive WordPress theme for agencies, creative teams, photographers, freelancers, bloggers, artists, corporate business and any other business niche to build portfolio, blog and eCommerce website with ease.

This beautiful and stylish theme offers lots of layouts for your online portfolio and blog. A great collection of over 150 pre-built elements, 25+ ready made homepages and 200+ sample demo pages speedup web building . Theme bundled is also bundled with the popular WPBakery Page Builder and Slider Revolution using Pofo custom shortcodes with extra options. You can also use the WordPress customizer to further design your perfect website. Pofo is coded with best standards and well documented, so your website loads fast and you can easily find answers to all your questions.

6. Kappe Full Screen Portfolio & Blog WP Theme

Kappe - Full Screen Portfolio & Blog WP Theme

Kappe is modern looking, with a responsive grid layout and a clean, almost minimal design WordPress portfolio theme. This theme is built exclusively for photography, although it can inculcate other showcases. It is completely customizable and features retina icons, unlimited sliders, colors, sidebars and 5+ custom widgets. It is translation ready, and comes with a completely revised detailed documentation. So, if you’re looking for something that will highlight your work rather than itself, then this is definitely worth a try.

7. GridStack Responsive Agency WordPress Theme

GridStack - Responsive Agency WordPress Theme

GridStack is a minima and modern WordPress portfolio theme made for showcasing photographs, illustrations, videos and other media. It is completely responsive and also supports AJAX dynamic loading. The theme also comes with a fixed panel on the left which helps you navigate seamlessly.

Some of its other features include full-screen viewing options and parallax scrolling effects, full-width gallery grids. This way your WordPress site looks great and uses the full screen available, no matter what size the screen actually is. The image grid is also responsive, rearranging as the viewing resolution shrinks or enlarges with smooth animated effects.

8. Milo Mobile Responsive & WooCommerce Ready Theme

Milo - Mobile responsive WooCommerce Ready WordPress Theme

Milo is a perfectly minimalistic and ultra-modern responsive WordPress portfolio theme. Milo is well-suited for photographers, artists, and illustrators with an appreciation for minimalism and a desire to display their online portfolio in a way that makes their content the focal point of every page. Milo features smart responsive design to display page layouts consistently well regardless of screen size or device type. Having a side panel helps immensely in navigation without compromising its lightness and sophistication. If you truly love minimalism, then this is the theme for you!

9. Reveal Responsive Porfolio WordPress Theme

Reveal Responsive Porfolio Premium WordPress Theme

Reveal is a beautiful, structured, sophisticated responsive WordPress portfolio theme. Reveal sports a minimal and clean styling paired with AJAX powered project viewing, make this theme perfect for showing off your best work. The theme comes with several unique layouts and an immense variety of customization options. What is unique about this theme is that you can now forget about zooming in or out on the photographs to meet your screen’s requirement. The theme automatically adjusts the images depending upon the screen. Literally ANY screen size! Need something new? You could really fall for this uniqueness.

10. Inspiro Fullscreen Gallery WordPress Theme

Inspiro Fullscreen Gallery Premium WordPress Theme

Inspiro is a clean and elegant responsive WordPress portfolio theme which focuses more on the photograph related creative media. It comes packed with great features like video support, full-screen slideshow, widgetized homepage, gallery module, dynamic homepage builder the Visual Customizer, and is based on the incredible ZOOM Framework.

No coding is required at any point, which is why Inspiro is friendly to webmasters of all skill levels. Without the requirement of coding and the availability of easy drag & drop, you’ll be able to build your website in absolutely no time and finally be able to showcase the talent to the world that you had kept to yourself for too long! Happy showcasing!

11. North Contemporary Portfolio WordPress Theme

North Portfolio WordPress Theme

The epitome of class and minimal beauty, the North Photography theme is a flexible, responsive WordPress portfolio theme. Its built with easy to use options for portfolio posts, featured images, galleries, sliders, footer widgets, and tons of unlimited color customization options from within the live WordPress.

The North theme includes portfolio customization options as well. Create tiled, square, mosaic or carousel type galleries. Add a sidebar or don’t – you can choose your page layout. Plus the theme is fully responsive, so your portfolio looks perfect on any device. When it comes to finding the best portfolio WordPress themes to crack into the big leagues, the North theme might be the needle in the haystack you were looking for!

12. Photographer Online Portfolio WordPress Theme

Photographer Online Portfolio WordPress Theme

The Photographer WordPress Theme is a premium theme developed in cooperation with professional photographer – so you can be sure that the theme contains every necessity for your photography needs. Nothing’s missing!

Only beautiful photos can sell a photographer’s services. With this theme you can present your work elegantly on your homepage. Display your photos as a full-size background or as a slider. Plus the theme is also perfect for your portfolio – just use the built-in features to add your gallery. For photographers looking to grow their customer base, the customizable contact form and WooCommerce plugin integration are great. This way you can sell any kind of services and products directly, such as photo sessions, photobooks or accessories for photographers.

13. Mane Modern Portfolio WordPress Theme for Creatives

Mane Modern Portfolio WordPress Theme for Creatives

The Mane WordPress theme is packed full of useful features for creating a creative portfolio online. The theme is bundled with the powerful Visual Composer page builder so you can create your own custom page layouts, complete with tons of built-in portfolio options. Add a portfolio list, grid, load more or infinite scroll, carousels, sliders and more. Plus the theme comes with lightbox on images and videos, social feed and icon integrations, parallax support, interactive links and more.

14. Kalium Professional Creative WordPress Theme

Kalium Professional Creative WordPress Theme

Kalium is a top selling creative theme and it’s easy to see why. The theme features tons of built-in options any creative professional would love. Easy page building options, layout designers, and pre-made sample demos make it easy to get started. After that use added options for typography, sliders, language translations, colors, portfolio hovers, Dribbble portfolio integration, and colors for code free styling. The Kalium theme is also retina ready and features adaptive images that stretch or crop to display at the perfect size on any device. It’s probably one of the best portfolio WordPress themes for businesses and agencies due to the flexibility.

15. Werkstatt Creative Portfolio WordPress Theme

Werkstatt Creative Portfolio WordPress Theme

To build a beautiful portfolio it really helps to start with a beautiful template. It just so happens that the Werkstatt theme is full of them. With more than 25+ unique portfolio and gallery style demos to choose from, a built-in drag and drop page builder interface, auto detect portfolio filter, customizable blog styles and more it’s a great choice for any creative to build their own website. Other great features include hundreds of Google fonts, 6 animated hover effects, WooCommerce compatibility, multiple menu layouts and even audio overlays.

Wrapping Up Our Picks for the Best Portfolio WordPress Themes

These are just some of our favorite themes that we think also happen to be some of the best portfolio WordPress themes on the web, but we know there are many more options out there for you. If you’ve found what your heart desired, do let us know. We’d love to hear which you think are the best portfolio WordPress themes and if you think they should have been included in our list.



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People Powered By WordPress: Kevin Graham


There are a lot of blog posts and articles online about sites powered by WordPress. Instead of writing “just another one” of those articles, we here at WPExplorer have decided to start a series that dives deeper than just the website. In People Powered by WordPress we’re going to cover people who are able to run businesses with the help of WordPress, the impact that WordPress has on their business processes, and the sorts of lives that they are able to live because of their business.

In the first installment, I got in touch with my friend Kevin Graham, a digital Nomad that I met in Chiang Mai in Thailand, and asked him a few questions to give you a closer look into his life and business.

Please introduce yourself, and what you do…

My name is Kevin Graham and I’m the founder of two web hosting companies for Private Blog Networks – LaunchCDN and Bulk Buy Hosting. I also run a portfolio of product review web sites and a Software as a Service product called Fresh Feedback, that allows business owners to collect feedback from their customers and direct their happy customers to leave reviews for them on the review sites that matter to them.

When did you get started?

I’ve been full time in this space since 2014, but have been building web sites since 1999 and first used WordPress in 2008 which was around the time of WordPress 2.6.

Why did you decide you wanted to start an online business?

I’ve been running online businesses offering web design and earning advertising revenue since I was about 14 years old. I started because I had a keen interest in technology and the internet and wanted to be a producer of new content for the internet, rather than just a consumer.

When/why did you choose WordPress?

I first chose WordPress for its ease of use as a pure blogging platform – that is, to keep a blog and post updates about new things that I’d found online and updates from my life and career in education.

In more recent times, I’ve transitioned to using WordPress as more of a simple Content Management System and site builder for more static marketing style sites, and really appreciate the convenience of picking a great WordPress theme and using it as the base of building a great looking web site.

What are WordPress’s strengths/weaknesses compared to competitors?

The strength of WordPress comes from the large community that exists around it, who develop amazing themes and plugins to help extend the core functionality of the platform. This makes it fast and easy to bolt on new functionality and use WordPress for a wide variety of things including running an e-commerce store with WooCommerce membership or training sites with plugins like S2 Member or pretty much anything else that you can imagine.

I’ve tried several other content management systems in the past, like Drupal and Joomla, but none have been as easy to get started with as WordPress.

Tell me a little bit about your current lifestyle, (and how it differs from when you were working your last job.)

For the last 4 years, I’ve been a digital nomad which has allowed me to travel the world while running my businesses. I’ve based myself in Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand and my home town of Adelaide in Australia during that time and traveled to a large number of the countries across Asia/South East Asia as well, including extended trips to places including Vietnam, Japan, South Korea as well as a lot of Europe including long stays in Germany and the Azores, a remote archipelago that is off the coast of Portugal.

Do you think there is a technical barrier blocking people who aren’t computer engineers from doing what you do, or creating other businesses online?

With specialist WordPress hosting companies like WP Engine, Kinsta and Flywheel, it’s very easy to get started with WordPress. I think that the days of needing to be a computer engineer to build a functional online business are well and truly behind us and WordPress is definitely at the forefront of making it easy to build a beautiful web site and start selling almost anything you want online.

What do you feel the lack of such a barrier means for most people?

It means that it’s super easy to start a side hustle online and earn a few hundred (or a few thousand) dollars a month from your own blog or online store. There are plenty of people doing it, and podcasts like Side Hustle School are helping to showcase people doing exactly that.

It costs less than $9 to buy your own domain name, and a high quality WordPress host like Flywheel (note: we’ve covered Flywheel and other top WordPress hosting options on the blog) costs $15 a month – about 50 cents a day. Add on about $60 once-off for a premium WordPress theme and you can get your own web site online in an evening.

Where can people find out a little bit more about you and your business?

You can find my Private Blog Network hosting companies at LaunchCDN and Bulk Buy Hosting. My web service that allows business owners to collect feedback from their customers and direct their happy customers to leave reviews for them on the review sites that matter to them is called Fresh Feedback. And you can find my personal blog at KevinGraham.com.

In closing, do you have something to say to people who dream about starting a business online, but aren’t pulling the trigger?

Go and check out the Side Hustle School podcast, find some inspiration from the daily episodes of people just like you who are building online businesses and then most importantly, take action on that and get started.

Afterword

Thank you so much for being the very first interviewee in this series Kevin. Your answers will definitely inspire some of our readers to take action, and start their very own web-based businesses, and hopefully, even change their lives.

And to our readers: If you have any questions for Kevin, any questions you think should be added to the upcoming interviews, or if you have someone you want to be interviewed in mind, we’d love to know. Please leave a comment with your questions below.



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Best Sticky Header Plugins for WordPress


Sticky navigation and sticky headers used to be a stylistic detail and many of the today’s top brands use them. You’ll find fixed navigation on Sony, Facebook, Google+, Adidas, Nike, CNN and many other websites and they all look modern. But besides looking stylish, there are many benefits of adding a sticky header plugin to your WordPress website:

  • Easier browsing
  • Better branding
  • More Page Views per visit
  • Lower bounce rate

There are also some cons to having fixed navigation on your website, because it introduces more clutter and gives users the ability to navigate away faster, so it’s not good to have it on your landing pages. Many websites don’t need it, but often times implement it just for the sake of being trendy.

If you decide and implement it, consult your Google Analytics data to see whether your sticky header plugin actually improves your key performance metrics. Sticky headers can contribute to web usability & SEO so just check to see if it’s right for your site. Having something so important on your website that doesn’t improve user experience and gets in the way of your website’s aim can be a big issue.

There are many tutorials to help you make fixed navigation yourself. If you don’t want to waste time coding and styling your fixed navigation, you could try installing a WordPress theme that has sticky header built in. Our Total WordPress theme features sticky navigation (which is super customizable by the way), but if your current theme doesn’t support sticky headers, then read on. I’m going to cover best sticky header plugin options for WordPress, both free and premium.

When it comes to extending your website functionality, there are multiple choices and they all come in the form of free or premium (paid) plugins. The free options are pretty great, but typically a premium sticky header plugin will come with many features you can’t get for free. This includes options that let you control every segment of your header or even replacing it as well as premium support and updates. For something as important as your WordPress header, I believe they’re worth checking out.

1. Sticky Menu (or Anything) on Scroll Free WordPress Plugin

Sticky Menu (or Anything) on Scroll Free WordPress Plugin

Sticky Menu (or Anything) on Scroll is your answer if you want to make any element on your web page sticky. The plugin is usually used to fix the menu on the top of the page, but you can just as well use it to make a sticky header too.

Though it works quite well in most situations, it’s not a straightforward solution as it needs you to use a little bit of coding. But if you’re one of those who doesn’t mind dealing with some CSS, read on. Features include:

  • Make any element on your page sticky as soon as it hits the top
  • The element needs to have a unique name, class or id
  • Option to add space between sticky header and top of the page
  • Specify minimum and maximum screen sizes for the sticky feature
  • Does not affect the Admin Toolbar on top of the page

One drawback, however, is that in some cases the header does not resize to suit the browser size. On the other hand, it allows you to turn on some styling to the elements only when they are sticky.

Using this plugin, you can make other elements sticky too – call to action boxes, logos, or even promotional banners. But as it requires users to manually pick the right selector for the page element to be fixed, it may not be everyone’s favorite. Also, this plugin works to make only one element sticky at a time.

2. Mega Main Menu Premium WordPress Plugin

Mega Main Menu Plugin

The Mega Main Menu is one of the top menu plugins on the market. Not only does it offer options for mega menus, drop-downs, mobile optimization, translation support and tons of customizations but it also includes a super helpful sticky option.

Once you install and activate the plugin just use the easy options under Appearance > Mega Main Menu to configure it. There you’ll find options for:

  • Enabling a sticky menu
  • Define sticky scroll offset
  • Custom fonts, colors & icons
  • Drop-downs
  • RTL & translation ready
  • Hide/Show items on scroll
  • Easy to use shortcodes & widgets

The options in this sticky header plugin are all easy to use so it shouldn’t be too long before you have a working fixed navigation and branding on your website.

3. Simple Sticky Header on Scroll Free WordPress Plugin

Simple Sticky Header on Scroll Free WordPress Plugin

Add a simple sticky header to any WordPress theme with the free Simple Sticky Header on Scroll. This sticky header plugin offers a quick setup with easy options for your logo, colors, a “next post button,” drop-downs and more. This free plugin puts you in control of many things, such as:

  • Custom logo
  • Built-in color options
  • “Next Post” link option
  • Drop-down on mobile
  • Custom scroll distance menu visibility
  • WordPress live Customizer integration

That last feature is super helpful, as you can preview you sticky header edits live as you make them. Then just publish your changes to quickly update your website.

4. Awesome Header Premium WordPress Plugin

Awesome Header WordPress Sticky Navigation Plugin

Awesome Header is a “pro” sticky header plugin. What you’ll find interesting here is that not only can it serve as your sticky navigation, but you can replace your entire WordPress header with it.

You just need to replace your exiting header markup with a small function and your WordPress header will be replaced by Awesome Header. From there on, you can tweak anything you can imagine. There’s everything you find in the free version and some:

  • Ability to replace your entire WordPress header
  • 3 levels of navigation
  • 100% responsive
  • Better SEO with Breadcrumb Microdata
  • WooCommerce & bbPress support for Breadcrumbs
  • Unlimited color options
  • Background image or pattern
  • Secondary menu (3 vertical dots)
  • Fixed navigation
  • 3 search types (underline, plain search field and slide below header)
  • Menu items padding (left/right); also for sticky header
  • Menu item background
  • Font sizes for all elements
  • Transparency for menus and submenus
  • Social menu with Genericons make it retina ready
  • Navigation labels

If you’re developer and want even more control over your header areas, you can do that as Awesome Header is very extensible using its many Filter & Action Hooks.

5. Hero Mega Menu Premium WordPress Plugin

Hero Mega Menu Premium WordPress Plugin

This one features a fully flexible & customizable layout, packed with options for just a bout every features of your header. The Hero Mega Menu is super easy to use, since it utilizes a drag and drop interface to create a custom menu design. And the structure builder works just like normal WordPress menus – simply nest elements to create drop downs, and edit them to create mega menus. It also features:

  • Transparency options
  • 60 Color presets
  • Responsive design
  • Map, image, list, post & text support
  • Custom backgrounds
  • 270 ElegantThemes icons
  • Mobile navigation
  • Sticky menu (of course!)

And you can do tons more. The plugin also supports custom CSS, includes fixed & full width layout options, shadows & rounded corner options, various animations, Google fonts support and more.

6. myStickymenu Free WordPress Plugin

myStickymenu Free WordPress Plugin

myStickymenu is a lean plugin that simply does what it sets out to do – adding a sticky feature to an element on your webpages. It’s responsive and supports multiple languages. The main features include:

  • Flexible and customizable
  • You’ll be able to add custom CSS code to style your fixed header
  • Can set values for fixing header depending on how far down the user scrolls
  • Header can be full width or any limit you specify

myStickymenu is simple, and mostly works out of the box. While it’s designed with the Twenty Thirteen theme in mind, it works well for most other themes, though it may take some amount of customs CSS to style the header in a way you want.

7. QuadMenu Premium WordPress Plugin

QuadMenu Premium WordPress Plugin

QuadMenu is an easy to use custom menu builder with a drag & drop interface. You can use the built-in elements for a mega menu layout, icons, social links, shopping cart, widgets and more to create the perfect menu for your website. Plus the plugin includes a sticky menu on scroll option, making the navigation even easier for your readers to use. Other awesome features include:

  • Drag & drop menu builder
  • Custom logo
  • Unlimited menu style themes
  • Horizontal or vertical layout
  • Sticky on scroll
  • Mega menu supported
  • Custom fonts
  • Visual Composer compatible

Another unique feature that sets QuadMenu apart from others is the developer capabilities. It’s a great option for theme devs or freelancers working on custom client sites since there are built-in features for .less files, custom options, filters, styles and more.

8. Fixed and Sticky Header Free WordPress Plugin

Fixed and Sticky Header Free WordPress Plugin

Fixed and Sticky Header does a good job of making your header or menu fixed, and making it visible on your website at all times. You’ll need to specify the id or class of the header in the plugin settings. You can also:

  • Choose the background color of the header
  • Choose text color for the header
  • Set the scroll distance at which the header is to turn sticky

9. Sticky Header on Scroll Premium Plugin for WordPress

Sticky Header on Scroll Premium Plugin for WordPress

Sticky header on Scroll for WordPress is a no fuss plugin for adding a sticky header that offers a ton of customization options. Installation is easy and you’ll have a sticky header in no time at all. It’s peppered with helpful options that include:

  • Point and click customization to blend the header with any theme
  • Smoothly responsive, adjusting to any screen size
  • Includes an alternative Slim design
  • Includes custom button label for dropdown menu, optionally hide menu
  • Upload logo image or display text, optionally hide logo
  • Use it to display post title or share buttons or next post on blog posts
  • Turn off stickiness on mobiles, if you wish
  • Live customizer integration to help you preview changes

Aside from that, this lightweight plugin can also hide the header of your existing theme. Besides you can fix the scroll distance at which the header is to turn sticky and change colors, background color, background image, opacity and more. All-in-all comprehensive solution to add a sticky faeture to your header.

10. Site Content Navigator Premium Plugin For WordPress

Site Content Navigator Premium Plugin For WordPress

If you create a lot of landing pages or long content (such as in depth guides or studies) then the Site Content Navigator is a useful plugin you might want to checkout. With this plugin you can enable a sticky navigation on any of your posts, pages and/or custom post types. Then use the options to set bar ending, overlap, section CSS selectors (headings, divs, etc), tooltips, visibility and more.

  • Sticky menu
  • Customizable progress bar
  • Define page sections
  • Advanced settings
  • Tooltips
  • Custom font & CSS options
  • Per post options
  • Sidebar widget

Conclusion

We’ll see more and more sites adopting sticky headers and sticky navigation, but if not done properly, these fixed website elements can be distracting and contribute to poor conversion rates. Sticky navigation can be too large for some screens, so you need to make sure it doesn’t take up too much space on mobile screens.

Your website branding and navigation should contribute to the pleasant feeling of browsing and it should be easily accessible.

Sticky headers should never compete with your content for attention.

Consider experimenting with sticky headers, monitor your traffic, conversions and user behavior using analytic platforms. If configured properly, sticky header WordPress plugins can bring you more returning customers, more satisfied users and ultimately, more conversions.



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How To Auto Update WordPress Themes with the Envato Market Plugin


Keeping your WordPress themes and plugins up to date is just as important as updating your core WordPress installation. If you’re using a free theme or plugin via WordPress.org then you’re probably familiar with the auto-updates via your dashboard.

Normally when you see a notice in your admin navbar that you have an update you can go to Dashboard > Updates and all you have to do is confirm the update to a WordPress.org theme or plugin, or to your core WordPress installation. Easy right? Well with the Envato Market plugin updating all of the premium themes and plugins you’ve purchased from Themeforest and Codecanyon can be just as easy.

In this guide we’ll walk you through all of the steps for downloading the free Envato Market plugin, as well as installation and setup. Before you get started it’s important to note that you must use an admin account on your WordPress site to install the plugin and enable auto-updates. And remember – the Envato Market plugin only provides auto-updates for Themeforest WordPress themes and Codecanyon WordPress plugins (it will not provide update notices for themes you’ve purchased or downloaded from other marketplaces). Okay, now let’s get started!

Envato Market Plugin Installation

Download the Envato Market Plugin

The very first step is to download the Envato Market plugin. This is available on Envato (as well as via Github) and is completely free. All you need to do is click on the button below to go to the Envato Market plugin page and click on the Download button.

Download the Envato Market Plugin

This will download the zip file with the plugin in it. No need to unzip it – we’ll be installing it as is. Now that you have the plugin, go ahead and log into your WordPress installation that you want to add auto-updates to.

Add New Plugin

To install the plugin navigate to Plugins > Add New and click on the Upload Plugin button at the top of the page.

Upload the Envato Market zip

Next browse for the envato-market.zip file that you downloaded from Github.

Install the Envato Market Plugin

Then click the button to Install Now and when prompted click the Activate Plugin link.

Activate the Envato Market Plugin

Now that the plugin is installed and active you should see a new Envato Market menu item in your WordPress dashboard.

Envato Market Plugin Setup

The next step is to sync the Envato Market plugin with your Envato account to have access to all of your marketplace purchases as well as item updates.

Envato Market Plugin Main Settings

To get started click on the Envato Market link in your dashboard menu. You should see a screen similar to the one above. The very first step is to create an Envato API token. To do this, click on the generate a personal token link (highlighted in red above).

Generate an Envato API Token

If you’re already logged into your Envato account you’ll be taken to the screen above (otherwise you will be prompted to login first before being redirected to this page). On this screen you can see what the Envato Market plugin is requesting permission to access via your Envato account (Envato sites, the ability to download your items, a list of your purchases and verification of your purchases).

To proceed give your token a name, check the box that you have read and agree to the terms and then click the green button to create your token.

Copy Your Envato API Token

Once your token is created you will see a green success screen. Copy your token code (this is very important since Envato doesn’t store a copy of the token for you), check to confirm that you’ve copied it and click the white button that you got it.

Paste Your Envato API Token

Now go back to your WordPress installation and paste in your Envato API token then click save.

Possible Envato Market Error

It’s possible that you might see the error above when you first enter your token. Don’t worry, just go back to the previous page and try again. It should work on the second go.

Envato Market Purchases

Once your token is saved and validated your page will refresh to show your Envato Market landing page with added tabs for your items. The added tab(s) display all of your theme and plugin purchases as well as their version numbers and quick links to the theme and author pages.

A Note For Web Designers & Design Agencies

If you are a web design freelancer or a design agency that purchases themes for clients you can use the Envato Market plugin to keep your clients’ sites up to date as well. You shouldn’t give your clients access to all your purchases, so instead you should use the Single Item Tokens section.

Single Use Envato Token Authorization

You’ll first need to install the Envato Market plugin on your client’s site and then create a token by clicking on the generate a personal token link. Make a copy of your token just like you would if you were creating your own token.

Envato Client Item ID

Next you’ll also need to locate the Item ID for your client’s theme and/or plugin(s). To find the ID simply go to the Themeforest or Codecanyon item page and copy the numerical ID at the end of the URL.

Authorize Envato Item with Token

Now navigate back to the Envato Market page within your client’s site instead of pasting your token in the available global field click on the Add Item button. This will open a popup to enter your Envato Token and the item ID.

Confirm Item Authorization

Once you save the item you can repeat the process to add all of your other purchases for this specific client.

Authorized Envato Items

Now the WordPress installation you’ve been working on will only show the items (and related updates) that you have added. Non-developers might also want to consider this plugin if you’ve made many Envato purchases over the years and only want to see updates for the items you’re currently using.

Envato Market Auto-Updates for Themes & Plugins

Now that you have the Envato Market plugin installed and synced to your account you will have all of your purchases and item updates at your fingertips.

Envato Market Item Updates

If an update is available for an item you have purchased you will see an orange notice like the image above.

WordPress Updates Page

Additionally, if a theme or plugin update is available you’ll also be able to see it on the core WordPress updates page by clicking on the refresh symbol in your admin navbar or by clicking on Dashboard > Updates. From here you can process your update per usual by selecting and updating your item.

To update your item via the Envato Market plugin simply click on the Update Available link in the orange notice to begin installing the update.

Updating Your Envato Items

If your item is showing the Updating… message for longer than a few minutes, refresh the page and try again.

Updated Envato Items

When the update is complete you will see a quick green notice that your item has been Updated! And that’s it. As updates are available you’ll be able to see them right from your dashboard (much more convenient than downloading updates yourself as you get email notices from Envato).

Installing New Purchases with the Envato Market Plugin

Installing new theme or plugin purchases is easier as well when you use the Envato Market plugin. When you make a new purchase you’ll see it in your Envato Market tab (under “themes” or “plugins” respectively).

Install New Theme with Envato Market

Just click on the blue Install button to install your new theme or plugin (no need to download the item zip file).

Envato Theme Installation Confirmation

Just wait a few moments and you should see a confirmation screen like the one above. Next you can Preview (if it’s a theme) or simply Activate it to get started designing your website (note: if you’re changing the theme on your current live website we highly recommend previewing first and using this guide to safely change your WordPress theme).

Wrapping Up

Hopefully this guide has been able to help you make updating your Themeforest and Codecanyon item updates much easier. If you have any questions about the Envato Market plugin or other tips to add to our guide just leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!



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WordPress vs Weebly – Comparison of Features


Selecting the right platform to help you create your website can be a difficult decision. That’s why we have created this WordPress vs Weebly guide to help you understand the pros and cons of each solution. Our WordPress vs Weebly comparisons will cover:

  • Price
  • Hosting
  • Ease of Use
  • Themes
  • Features and Functionalities
  • SEO
  • Customer Support

By the end of reading, you should have a clear understanding of whether WordPress or Weebly is the best fit for your new website.

WordPress Overview

WordPress.org

At present, over 27.5% of all websites globally are using WordPress (which includes WPExplorer – of course). So, as you can see, it’s a pretty popular platform. And for good reason. (Note: In this article, when we mention WordPress, we are referring to self-hosted WordPress.org. For information on WordPress.com, please check out our guide on WordPress.com vs WordPress.org).

WordPress is an open source software, meaning it is free to install and use. It is completely customizable, enabling you to design any type and style of website that you may need. Thousands of themes and plugins have also been created by developers, so you can add extra functionality to your site without having to touch a line of code.

The website building experience offered by WordPress does differ greatly from Weebly. A WordPress website will take much longer to set up, and may require some prior reading by those with limited web design experience. However, the options available via WordPress far exceed those of Weebly, with WordPress ultimately giving you complete control over every aspect of your site.

WordPress will allow you to design any type of website and add any extra WordPress or third-party tools to your site. And all for as much or as little money you would like to spend. There are also countless WordPress developers and designers, who can design custom elements for your website, helping to give your business an edge over the competition. So, if you are looking to create a serious, professional, and unique website, WordPress is the platform for you.

Weebly Overview

Weebly

Weebly is a drag and drop website builder service. It enables you to quickly and easily design websites without having to code. Weebly is also a completely hosted service. This means that your website will be hosted on Weebly’s servers.

To use Weebly you don’t need any prior web design or technical experience. The Weebly interface is extremely intuitive and step-by-step guidance on how to use the software is constantly provided. Therefore, if you want to create and launch a site in a matter of minutes you can do, and then update it easily whenever you need.

Weebly includes responsive themes, pre-designed layout options, an integrated eCommerce platform, and a drag and drop editor. These features will help you create a professional and stylish website. So whether you are looking to start a blog, niche website or eCommerce store, Weebly can help you achieve your goals.

Weebly also provides a wide range of eCommerce and marketing tools. These will help you run a smooth and successful online store, drive traffic to your site, help you grow your blog’s following, and much more. Weebly mobile apps also ensure that you can access your site from any device. This allows you to interact with your site’s visitors, track your site’s performance and manage store orders from anywhere in the world.

Pricing

Pricing is important and will often be the deciding factor for many as to which platform (WordPress vs Weebly) they use to create their website. Both Weebly and WordPress are initially free to use. But, if you are serious about building a thriving and successful website, then both platforms will cost you in the long run.

WordPress Costs

WordPress.org software has always been and always will be free. Therefore to install the software and create a website in WordPress will cost you nothing.

However, you will have to purchase your site’s domain name and hosting service. Domain names are generally cheap (you can use this GoDaddy Domains deal to get one for under $1), and can be paid on a yearly basis. Hosting providers vary greatly in price, but again won’t break the bank and can be paid monthly.

Other costs of building a WordPress website involve purchases of premium add-ons such as a maintenance service, premium theme, or some of the premium WordPress tools including page builders, and lead generation solutions.

Weebly Pricing

Pricing

Weebly is free to use, but this deal comes with catches. Firstly, to create your own domain name, or to transfer a domain from another platform, you will need to upgrade to Weebly’s premium ‘Connect’ plan. If you want to stay using Weebly for free, you can create your own subdomain, resulting in your site’s URL ending in ‘sitename’.weebly.com. This is fine for a personal website, but if you are wanting to portray a serious and professional business, then using a Weebly subdomain just isn’t going to cut it.

Secondly, if you build a website using the free Weebly plan, then you will find Weebly ads displayed on your website. Again, not the look of a reputable business. Free websites are also only entitled to a limited amount of storage, and can’t take advantage of many of Weebly’s advanced features, including analytics, extra security measures, and much more.

However, on the plus side, if you are happy to pay for the service, Weebly provides a range of plans to cater for different website needs. These include Starter, Pro and Business plans, that have increased storage, no ads, HD video and audio integration, and eCommerce support, to name a few premium features. These plans are charged on a monthly or annual basis, and will need to be paid for as long as the website is up and running.

Pricing Compared

WordPress is free to use, but the domain and hosting services will mean you have small monthly outgoings to keep your site online. All premium tools and services based around WordPress are optional, so you can choose what you spend.

Weebly will allow you to create a completely free website. However, if you want to create a website of significance, be prepared to sign in for indefinite monthly payments.

Hosting

Hosting is a big issue for many website owners. And for good reason. The bottom line is, if you don’t self-host your website then you don’t actually own it. And this can cause a lot of stress if you ever want to switch platforms, or if you don’t follow the terms of service.

WordPress – Self Hosted

Hosting

WordPress.org sites all have to be self-hosted. This can seem a bit daunting for those who have never created a website before, as you will need to go out and research hosting providers to see which service best suits your site’s needs. We have written extensively about how to choose a hosting provider, so if you aren’t sure, check out our recommended WordPress hosting.

The great thing about WordPress.org hosting is that there is so much choice. Whether you are just starting out, or you have a large multinational corporation, you will be easily able to find a hosting service for your website. And if for some reason you aren’t happy with the hosting deal you are receiving, you can quickly move your site to a new provider.

Weebly – Hosted Service

Weebly hosts all websites on its own servers, which does immediately put people off using this platform. However, there are some pros to having your site hosted for you.

Weebly takes the hassle out of choosing a hosting service, and takes care of all the technical aspects of running a website. This includes the security of your website, and ensuring your site always looks good, runs fast and stays online. Weebly also provides an SSL certificate for your eCommerce store, enabling your customers to safely make payments on your site.

Hosting Compared

WordPress.org is self-hosted, so you are in charge of finding a hosting provider as well as ensuring your site is safe, secure, and running smoothly. However, the overriding benefit here is that you do own your site, and you retain full control over it.

Weebly takes care of all your hosting needs, as well as your site’s security and technical performance. However, as Weebly is a hosted platform, there is a big question over who actually owns your website. This is fine if you run a three-page website. But if you have spent years building up content, and you rely on your site for a monthly income, then ownership suddenly becomes way more important.

Ease of Use

Both Weebly and WordPress are easy to use, and are both great platforms that will enable you to build beautiful and successful websites. However, if you have absolutely no web experience then there is no doubt that Weebly will be a better option for you. Equally, if you are looking to build a large site, consisting of numerous features and functionalities, then WordPress will be a better fit.

WordPress

WordPress provides a very different design experience, but one that will still enable you to design beautiful websites with ease. There is definitely has a steeper learning curve to WordPress compared to Weebly. And if you have no experience of web design or using WordPress, then you will have to do some reading on how to get started. However, with a thriving WordPress community, extensive information on using WordPress is available across the web.

Your WordPress design experience will differ depending on the theme and tools you decide to use. Many WordPress developers code their WordPress sites to implement any necessary changes. But the beauty of WordPress is that provides something for everyone, so if you don’t want to touch a line of code then you don’t need to. The majority of WordPress themes will enable you to customize your site through the theme options panel, via the Customizer on the live side of your site, or using a page builder.

Weebly

Ease of Use

Weebly is a drag and drop website builder, so everything you need to create a basic website is immediately available. Once you sign in with Weebly, you can select from the numerous Weebly themes. Your chosen template will then open within the Weebly editor, where you can drag and drop design elements onto the page to customize your site. Content elements include text, photos, maps, and video. You can also easily add pages, alter styling elements, add SEO data and much more.

The Weebly interface is very straightforward, which helps streamline the design process and makes designing your site fast and fun. Clear instructions on how to use the drag and drop editor are also displayed, making the different features effortlessly accessible. And all features and tools are present, so nothing needs to be installed or upgraded at any time.

Ease of Use Compared

Weebly definitely has the upper hand for ease of use and is great for beginners or those who have limited time. However, the pay off is that if you use Weebly you will lack choices, features and ultimately control over your site and its design.

WordPress has a steeper learning curve and your site will take longer to set up on this platform. But the numerous WordPress tools now available means that your site’s design can be a fluid and innovative experience. And, importantly, WordPress can provide all the features and functionalities that your growing website may need.

Themes

Both WordPress and Weebly provide themes from which you can create your website. Whether you are creating an eCommerce store, blog, or portfolio site, both platforms have a range of themes to cater for different types of sites.

WordPress

Themes

If you build your website on WordPress then you will have thousands of themes at your fingertips. Free WordPress themes can be found on top developer’s blogs (like WPExplorer) as well as right from your WordPress dashboard in the WordPress Repository. Whatever your niche you will be able to find a suitable theme for your project.

Premium themes can be purchased from a number of theme marketplaces and theme developers. When selecting a premium WordPress theme, always make sure you buy from a reputable source, like ThemeForest. Just do a bit of research to be sure it’s a legit marketplace or individual with a solid track record.

Premium WordPress themes will come with advanced features and usually provide better support options than free themes. They also often include integrated premium plugins to add extra functionality relevant to your theme’s niche. For more information on whether to choose a free or premium theme, check out our guide on selecting a WordPress theme.

Weebly

The Weebly themes are all pre-built, customizable, and incorporate a range of innovative features including parallax effects, video background options, custom fonts, and much more. Themes can be loaded into the drag and drop editor at a click of a button and come installed with images and all. All themes are free, responsive, and present modern and refreshing layouts and visuals.

The downside is that the number of themes provided by Weebly is limited. And if you opt to build your website on Weebly then you can only use the Weebly themes provided.

Themes Compared

There really is no comparison when it comes to WordPress vs Weebly themes. Although Weebly provides a good number of high-quality themes, this can’t compare with the amount and variety of WordPress themes that are available.

Features and Functionalities

WordPress vs Weebly features and functionalities is a fairly impressive comparison. Both offer plenty of features users will love. These will help you not only design a stunning website, but importantly help your site achieve its goals.

WordPress Features and Functionalities

Traditionally, WordPress functionality was added via plugins. However, nowadays it is not unusual to find a wide assortment of built-for-purpose features and functionalities integrated directly into WordPress themes. When researching themes, look carefully to see which features they ship with. If the specific features you want are not listed, then you will need to install them using WordPress plugins.

WordPress Plugins

The upside of having to install functionality via plugins is the unlimited options that WordPress plugins provide. Whatever the needs of your site, you will be able to find the right WordPress plugins to cater for them.

Free plugins can be found in the WordPress Repository, and can usually be installed and up and running on your site within minutes. Premium plugins can also be purchased from online marketplaces like CodeCanyon, as well as from numerous WordPress theme and plugin developers.

Weebly Built-In Features

Weebly comes with a range of effective built-in features and functionalities. As they are integrated tools, they are immediately on hand if and when you need them. Here are some of the advanced features that the Weebly platform gives you access to…

  • Online slideshow maker and gallery – easily create your own beautiful photo galleries and slideshows, use Weebly’s photo library, edit images, add captions, and more.
  • Social Sharing – schedule blog posts to be published on Facebook and Twitter to help your content reach a wider audience.
  • Embed or Host Videos Directly on Your Site – embed from YouTube or upload video files to Weebly.
  • Custom Forms – create custom forms and manage submissions, keeping you in touch with your site’s visitors.

Weebly also provides a selection of SEO, eCommerce, analytics and email marketing tools.

Weebly Apps

Features and Functionality

The Weebly App Center offers a large number of free and premium apps. Categories include…

  • eCommerce
  • Communication
  • Marketing
  • Social
  • Site Tools and Features

In total Weebly offers over 300 apps. However, as with themes, you can only use the Weebly apps provided, third-party apps and plugins are not allowed.

Features and Functionalities Compared

There are pros and cons to the different features and functionalities offered in WordPress vs Weebly. WordPress themes often come with a range of features and functionalities. And anything you need but isn’t included with your theme can be installed using WordPress plugins. Finding the right plugins for your project may initially take some researching. However, the unlimited number of plugins available ensure you will be quickly able to build a custom website based on your business needs.

Weebly features are all built-in, and are immediately ready and easy to use. However, you are limited as to what is offered, and although you have a selection of Weebly apps to choose from, you cannot install third-party plugins. So if Weebly doesn’t have what you want, or you aren’t impressed with the choice, then there is nothing you can do about it.

SEO

SEO should be a priority for all website owners. Being SEO proactive will help your site rank well in the search engines and increase the amount of traffic arriving at your site.

WordPress

Yoast SEO

The majority of modern themes are fully responsive and optimized for the search engines. However, there are also a number of WordPress plugins that will help your content rank well.

Yoast SEO is the most popular and downloaded plugin, and for good reason. Yoast SEO provides advanced XML sitemap functionality, will give you full control over site breadcrumbs, and enable you to easily add titles and metadata descriptions to pages and posts. This plugin is free to install and use and is a must-have for all WordPress websites.

Weebly

If you use Weebly to create your site, much of your SEO is built-in of. All Weebly sites feature meta descriptions, a site map, SEO-friendly HTML formatting, and responsive designs. Extra SEO options are also available, including page-specific descriptions, alt tags on images, and more. The caveat here is that any time SEO is built-in it becomes more difficult to switch to a different website platform.

Weebly also provides easy to follow instructions on how to improve your site’s SEO data, This is great for those who are still learning how to optimize their site for the search engines.

SEO Comparison

When looking at WordPress vs Weebly they have both have got SEO pretty well covered. Weebly’s SEO is all built-in, and comes with clear instructions on how to best optimize your site. With WordPress, you will need to choose and install an SEO plugin. However, if you stick with Yoast you can rest assured your SEO needs will be taken care of.

Customer Support

High-quality customer support can be a key factor in creating a fully functioning website. And it can also go a long way to keeping you sane through the design process.

WordPress

The WordPress community spans the globe and the internet is full of WordPress blogs, help sites, and forums. That said, there is no central support service offering email or phone help, unless you purchase a premium service or theme.

If you feel like you will need one to one support, it may well be worth buying a premium theme, as many of them come with extensive documentation, video tutorials, and that all important live chat or direct phone line.

Weebly

wordpress.org vs weebly

Weebly has an impressive support system, making web design on its platform an extremely positive experience. Apart from the drag and drop editor instructions, you also get access to the community forum, and chat and email support. For those who opt for the premium Weebly Pro and Business Plans, you will also receive phone support if you need it.

Customer Support Compared

Both Weebly and WordPress offer high levels of support. WordPress has had much more written about it than Weebly. However, it may take time searching the internet to find the right support guides or forums for your project. Weebly, on the other hand, has all the documentation on site, making it easy to access. And both have one-to-one support options, but it will cost you extra.

WordPress vs Weebly – Which Platform is Right for You?

As you can see, WordPress vs Weebly offer different pros and cons. The platform you choose will very much depend on your needs, and those of your project (though we would always choose WordPress). Weebly is perfect for beginners or those who are short on time, or who don’t want to have to learn how to use WordPress. However, if you are looking to grow your site into a successful and profitable business then WordPress is the better option. It’s surprisingly quick and easy to get the hang of, there are thousands of themes and plugins to style your site and there is a community (in the millions) of folks who love to help eachother.

Which website builder appeals to you? Please share your thoughts on WordPress vs Weebly in the thoughts below…



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DE:Comments WordPress Comments Plugin Review


Commenting systems are a subject of eternal controversy on the WordPress realm. For the most part, they are are plagued with inconsistencies, good systems with horrible UIs, those with superb UIs but hideous commercial options and of course free options with  advertisements unless you upgrade. Such is the world of commenting systems on WordPress. This should not be a problem if not for the fact that the standard commenting system on WordPress leaves a lot to be desired. When I thought everything was lost and I should be grateful to have Disqus (filled with advertising) as the best option for a comment system, I was introduced to DE:Comments.

DE:Comments is a new premium WordPress comments plugin alternative. The price is about right and the presentation does seem to be better than Disqus. The system is based on the core WordPress commenting system. It stores all comments in your local database, functioning as a re-skin with better features than the default WordPress, promising a much better performance and handling of comments.

DE:Comments Premium WordPress Plugin

The plugin pricing is split into 3 different plans. A 1 site license with a fair price of $50 a year and a 3 and 10 site license with a much higher price tag. You can try out the DE:Comments live demo but if you keep reading we really dig into how the plugin works.

For the purpose of this review, we are going to review the 1-site license. The process to activate the plugin is fairly easy. You just get the key from your dashboard at DE:Comments and then activate said key in your plugin, that’s it! No hidden links, no extra advertising – just a perfectly working plugin that transforms your comments.

DE:Comments WordPress Commenting Features

The main backend is composed of different options that can be configured for taking advantage of DE:Comments.

You can modify the main color, enable external URLs, number of comments and even image uploading.

The plugin needs WP Social for the automatic social network login, similar to what Disqus does. The only difference is that you yourself control the login so you need to configure all the social networks by hand. This is an extensive process but it’s worth it if you want to completely control the user login instead of letting an external commenting system to control it for you.

The default subscription and notification system can be tweaked but the plugin does not yet have any method of manually configuring an SMTP for sending those e-mails. This turns into a problem as most e-mails appears to be showing with the default theme displaying the DE:Comments logo and it does seem to enter the spam folder on some e-mail services, primarily because the e-mails are sent through the PHP function. Such feature could be added in the future but we don’t have a specific timeline.

Configuration of each social network on WP Social is a must for proper functioning of DE:Comments Plugin. DE:Comment also provides a badge system too, which is great to promote further interaction with and between your site visitors.

It is important to also point out that the developer does actively support and update their plugin. We’ve been in contact a few times during this review, and have the inside scoop that a new and refined version of the plugin will be coming out in the near future.

DE:Comments Frontend Function & Design

Moving along – once the comments are activated, this is the default layout you will see on your posts and pages with comments enabled.

It’s also important to consider just how easy it is to tweak the CSS code of the plugin to allow for better representation. Simply tagging a CSS class and adding it to the default CSS Customize in WordPress will be more than enough to quickly change it’s looks (note: the developer is also improving the customization on the next release with more options).

The reply options looks great, with clear + and – options for up or down voting a comment. Plus it allows for direct sharing of the comments, administration and custom badges.

This is how it looks on an extended conversation.

And this is how it looks on a very extensive conversation with Youtube Embeds.

DE:Comments WordPress Comments Performance

The performance of the system is simply amazing. DE:Comments doesn’t care how much comments you have on the post as it seems to be doing the entire work based on the default WordPress comment system. Database resources are minimal as DE:Comments only store additional values for voting and badges and the rest is loaded as default comments from WordPress with a better style built into it.

DE:Comments is as fast as standard WordPress comments and does seem to be even faster than Disqus (it even beat it at the UI presentation).

DE:Comments WordPress Comments Spam

As this is a plugin that builds on core WordPress comments it has built in support for all the most well known spam plugins for WordPress. For this review I’ve used Akismet, which is certified to work just about right with DE:Comments. The developer also expressed his intent on supporting more spam filter plugins in the future.

Final Thoughts on DE:Comments

DE:Comments is an excellent alternative for standard WordPress Comments at a fair price. The plugin works as expected and aside from some minor drawbacks as the PHP mail function, it is shaping up to be one of the top commenting options. The plugin has nicer looks than Disqus (in my opinion), it’s easy to work with, and it also increased the interaction in the blog I tested it on for this review. DE:Comments is also a lot less clunky than Disqus for styling, with simpler classes and an easy to work structure.

DE:Comments does not have a free tier and as such doesn’t include any kind of admin panel advertising. This is a good plus, as the developer is solely focusing on developing, instead of having to manage different free choices. Also, this makes it easier to white label for client sites as there aren’t constant notices to “upgrade” or but another version.

What do you think of DE:Comments? Do you have any questions regarding this awesome new system? Let’s hear them on the comments below.



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The Best WordPress Team Showcase Plugins in 2018


No customer likes to deal with an automated system. Chat boxes, automated replies, do-not-reply mails – they take away the personal touch completely. Though it’s not easy to avoid this in an automated environment, we can try to make it all less impersonal. One way to do so is to profile your team members on your website, using WordPress team showcase plugins. This way users get to put a face to the other end of the phone or email.

Your employees are the core strength of your organization. Letting users know about your employees will give them the confidence to deal with you, and boost trust levels.

Sure, your About page is a fine place to explain to customers what your business can do. But you can take it a notch further and add profile pages that  showcase your team members. This lets customers know you have the people to get the job done. These dedicated member pages also help to channel communication to the right person for a better user experience.

While creating a bio may be quite easy, putting it altogether and displaying it attractively requires more effort. This is especially true for large and diverse teams. Plugins can get a lot done when it comes to profile pages – create and update bios, create team pages, and add members to team pages. They’re good for both small groups as well as large organizations with multiple teams. Moreover, these plugins are responsive and so users can view them from any device.

Let’s check out some of our favorite WordPress team showcase plugins for your staff.

AWSM Team Showcase Free & Premium WordPress Plugin

AWSM Team makes it easy to create and mange a team and showcase it on your WordPress. Once you install the plugin, the AWSM Team item appears on your Admin sidebar.

AWSM Team Showcase Free WordPress Plugin

At first, you’ll meed to create individual member profile pages with details like name, description and contact info. These pages also serve as a basic template that can be used by each member to create bios. Once the member pages are ready, you can start creating a team or teams by adding member profiles. You can also configure the look and feel of each team page.

Three presets are available (card, table, list) and you can pick any one to display team members. Each preset comes with a few styling options as well as option to customize using CSS. The plugin is responsive and touch enabled.

Upgrade to Pro

AWSM Team Showcase Pro WordPress Plugin

With WordPress team showcase plugins (like most plugins), upgrading to a premium version of a plugin means more features and priority support from the developer. The Pro version of the plugin offers more features to help you better show off your awesome team. 5 additional presets and multiple styling options make it easier to design your showcase. It also supports the WPBakery Visual Page Builder, so you can easily add or insert teams in any theme.

Team Builder – Meet the Team Premium WordPress Plugin

Team Builder comes with a powerful admin builder, WPBakery Visual Page Builder support and a number of shortcodes that enable you to build an attractive display for your team in a very short time. The plugin can display your team in a grid, table, slider or widget.

Team Builder - Meet the Team Premium WordPress Plugin

Sliding panels in 5 themes provide a pleasing background for your team display. The visual builder, the drag and drop feature and the numerous customization options make building your team pages a fun exercise. Ready made layouts with different style presets are included, along with social icons bar with styling options. You’ll be able to customize fonts, colors, spacing and arrangement of different elements. You can also add fancy hover effects as well as a custom URL for each member.

Members can be tagged, so viewers can filter staff by departments or teams. Skill bars or stars help to rate employees and build cards with details like email, phone, Skype, website, bio, tagline or location. Employee details can also be stored as contacts which is an awesome features to find in WordPress team showcase plugins.

Team Members Free & Pro WordPress Plugin

Another of our top team showcase plugins called Team Members comes in two versions free and premium.

Team Members Free WordPress Plugin

Starting with the Teams item on your WordPress dashboard, you can add members to your team, with their photo, position, bio, and social profiles. Each member can have three social links and you can display up to four members in a single line. Any number of team members can be featured.

The plugin is also fully responsive, and thanks to the included easy to use shortcodes that you can just copy and page it’s simple to display team members anywhere on your site.

Upgrade to Pro

Darko Team Members Pro WordPress Plugin

The Team Members PRO version adds more features and options. Each member can have a separate color and up to five members can find a place in one row. On hover, a second photo can show up or a more info link can appear. You can add filters to your photos and choose design options such as square or round photos, add or omit borders. You can also pick colors to go with your brand.

Team Showcase Premium WordPress Plugin

Team Showcase WordPress plugin is a premium plugin that can be used to display any kind of content that includes image and text. Given the range of features it offers, it’s a good fit to showcase your team as well.

Team Showcase Premium WordPress Plugin

Pre-built layout options are available and you can customize the layouts by selecting options. Dozens of layout and layout combinations are possible using grid or table formats. The grids are responsive and can contain information about each member, or the info can appear on hover.

The tables are responsive too, but it’s the thumbnails pager layout that’s a standout. In this format, the pictures are rather small, but on clicking, will appear enlarged in a designated area. This arrangement is perfect for displaying a large number of team members on a smaller screen space. At the same time, users can click on any member to see more details.

The plugin allows you to categorize the members and apply filters to enable users to view members in any specific team or position. It’s compatible with the WPBakery Visual Page Builder, helping you to build your team pages visually using drag and drop to put members in any order of display. Each member can have their own page and default image size can be changed. It’s also widget-ready, easy to use and customize.

Modern Team Showcase Premium WordPress Plugin

Modern team Showcase gives you a choice of ten responsive presets that you can use to place your member profiles. Besides, you can edit these presets conveniently using the front-end visual template editor. The ease with which you can edit helps you create and re-create member and team profiles and have them up on your website in a very short time.

Modern Team Showcase Premium WordPress Plugin

The plugin comes with a basic form to collect information about team members. It also helps you create your own form to collect information. You’ll also find some dummy data to get you started on your profiling exercise.

The outstanding feature of this plugin is the meta key based logic system it uses to allows cell to differentiate based on custom fields associated with each member. For instance, clicking a button can highlight members who are part of some program or who are qualified to teach.

Your Thoughts on our Best WordPress Team Showcase Plugins

The WordPress team showcase plugins on this list are great options to introduce your team members on your website. They can give a human face to your organization and encourage visitors to interact with you online. Plus, when coupled with project management plugins it’s a great way to keep your business organized and your team connected.

What about you? Do you have a favorite WordPress plugin that helps to profile your team? Or perhaps you’ve tried one of these WordPress team showcase plugins before? Let us know in the comments below.



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25+ Best Social Media Plugins For WordPress in 2018


Since the advent of social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest et cetera, social media sharing has come of age as far as online promotion goes. It’s now a key part of any good marketing and SEO strategy, which is why you should consider using one of the best social media plugins for WordPress on your blog or website.

At the end of 2017 Facebook’s had more than 2.2 billion active users! Twitter, too, is racking up the numbers and stacking up IPO cash. YouTube has changed how the world shares videos and as a result gained millions of users. This means that nearly everybody is on social media, your target customers included. You probably have one or two or three social networks open right now, don’t you?

Your target audience throngs social networking sites in pursuit of news, entertainment, updates, gossip, products and to keep in touch with friends and familia. Others play Farmville and buy virtual pets on some of these sites, but hey, every man to his own tastes. Point is, social networking sites can give you a huge boost in web traffic. Just follow a general social media strategy and you’ll be alright.

Let us begin with the best social media plugins for WordPress, shall we? All the plugins covered in this post are great options for your website – we simply recommend choosing one (or maybe two if they are network specific).

1. Monarch Social Media Sharing Plugin for WordPress

Monarch: Best Social Media Plugins For WordPress

Monarch is the premium social sharing WordPress plugin by Elegant Themes, and in our opinion it really is one of the best social media plugins you can choose for your WordPress website. Included with their developer and lifetime licenses, Monarch is the perfect solution for all of your social sharing needs. With more than 35+ social networks, 5 different button locations, 6 pop-up and fly-in triggers, optional counts, custom colors and more all built-in you can literally build your own one of a kind set of social buttons.

2. Jetpack Free WordPress Plugin Social Module

Jetpack WordPress Plugin

One of the most used free plugins available is Jetpack – the everything but the kitchen sink style plugin created by WordPress. It adds features to WordPress for galleries, CDN, analytics and of course social. Jetpack Social features specifically include easy share buttons (via JetPack Sharing, with support for 11 major social networks, as well as email to a friend), social media icons widget, Publicize social sharing (which you can use to automatically share new content on all your social media accounts), Facebook likebox or page widget, Twitter timeline and more putting it at the top of our best social media plugins roundup.

3. Flow Flow Social Stream Premium WordPress Plugin

Flow Flow Social Stream: Best Social Media Plugins For WordPress

Flow Flow is a premium plugin you can use to combine your favorite social media channels right on your website. Build a custom feed of your own social media profiles (more than 40+ feed types are currently supported) or add your favorite topics or hashtags. The plugin includes customization options for grid layout, a drag and drop constructor, color schemes, manual post approval and an easy to insert WPBakery page builder block. There are also extensions for Google Adsense integration and real time stream updates for even more options.

4. WordPress Social Stream Premium Plugin

wordpress-social-stream-social-media-plugins-for-wordpress-wpexplorer

WordPress Social Stream is a feature-rich and regularly updated social media plugin that lets you combine all your social network activities into a single feed or one single network stream. To display your social media profiles, you can use rotating feed lists or a filterable jQuery social networking wall. This is the plugin to use if you are looking to make your social network streams more interactive.

5. Social Media Widget Free WordPress Plugin

Social Media Widget Free WordPress Plugin

We’ve mentioned this social media plugin in previous posts, which also reminds me of this WordPress marketing post. If you haven’t read it, please do. Social Media Widget enables you to display your social media profiles as icons on the sidebar. The plugin supports numerous social networking sites – 50+ in fact, with the option to add your own custom links as well as email sharing. It comes with a ton of icons in different sizes: 16×16, 24×24, 32×32, 64×64 and custom size. Moreover, you can animate the icons, which come in four packages, to create the visual effect you desire; the icons can zoom in (scale), bounce or fade in.

6. AddtoAny Share Buttons Free WordPress Plugin

AddtoAny Share Buttons: Best Social Media Plugins For WordPress

If you’re looking for a quick, simple and free way to add social sharing to your website this plugin is a great option. With more than 100+ social media and sharing sites, counters, floating buttons, individual share links, vector icons included, placement location options, easy to use shortcode and even Google Analytics integration the AddtoAny plugin includes tons of features you’re sure to find helpful.

7. Facebook Likebox Slider Premium WordPress Plugin

facebook-likebox-slider-social-media-plugins-for-wordpress-wpexplorer

This plugin features an awesome tab design, which is appealing and attention grabbing. But aesthetics aside, Facebook Likebox Slider is easy to install and use. In fact, installation involves a three-step configuration process and that’s it, but the author (Arscode) provides 24-hour support in case you get stuck. Facebook Likebox Slider supports mobile devices, which means more users will share your content regardless of the device they use.

This 5-star rated plugin is a great tool and an easy way to get more shares, more fans, popularity and eventually more traffic. More traffic translates into more money sooner or later. Don’t be fooled by its title though, this plugin supports a number of social networking sites including Facebook (obviously), Twitter, Google+, Youtube, Vimeo, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

8. ShareThis Share Buttons Free WordPress Plugin

ShareThis Share Buttons

When compiling this list of the best social media plugins for WordPress I could not leave off ShareThis. With millions of users and up to 120 social networking channels, ShareThis has become a powerful social media plugin in a market swarming with similar products. ShareThis gives you the ability to use sharing bars (including hovering bars), counters and buttons of different sizes. Additionally, you can track social network interactions by creating a social analytics account. This will let you determine the social quality of your WordPress site via the Social Quality Index (Note: you will need to signup for a ShareThis account to use the free plugin).

9. Tweetlab Twitter Slider & Usercard Premium WordPress Plugin

Tweetlab Twitter Slider & Usercard

Since we just covered the Facebook Likebox Slider, I figured it would be nice to add a Twitter Slider Plugin as a compliment. Now, if you are looking to display your tweets in a fancy way, this is the plugin you want. Twitter Slider offers a lot of personalization options including the ability to set up avatars, display animations and implement transitions. The slider can align horizontally or vertically depending on your taste, and you can use the plugin to display tweets from a user, a hashtag or Twitter search.

10. Social Media Feather Free Social Sharing Plugin

Social Media Feather Free Social Sharing Plugin

The following are the words that describe Social Media Feather: simple, super lightweight, effective social sharing, nice and modern looking. And I totally agree. The Social Media Feather plugin gives you the power to easily and quickly add social following and sharing buttons to posts, custom post types and pages. The plugin focuses on unobtrusive impact and performance while remaining simple. In addition, social media feather supports Retina displays, which means it works with all modern devices. It’s a feature-rich plugin, this Social Media Feather, and supports shortcodes so that you can place the social sharing options anywhere on your website.

11. Easy Social Share Buttons Premium WordPress Plugin

Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress

The Easy Social Share Buttons for WordPress are a complete social sharing package. The plugin comes with support for 45 major social networks, includes 52 templates, more than 27 design positions, and tons of customization options. Add share buttons to your blog or even your shop pages! You can even customize the content title, image and description that gets shared.

12. Social Media Flying Icons | Floating Social Media Icon Free Plugin

Floating Social Media Icons Plugin

The Floating Social Media Icon plugin is making waves of its own – maybe it is the ease of use or the simple process of configuration or even the mere fact that you can set up your social media icons to float, but this social media plugin is among the best in the market. Its main features include over twenty icon styles, resizable icons, multiple widgets, shortcode support, auto or manual integration and less load, which is good for your page load speed.

The icons are quite fancy, and they fly from top left to bottom right and stick there for as long as the user stays on your page. Don’t worry about it, you can disable this floating behavior and still use the plugin to grow your following and traffic.

13. Social Locker Content Locking Premium WordPress Plugin

OnePress Social Locker

The Social Locker is a surefire way to engage your readers and get them to share your content. Install the plugin and set options that require readers to share your content to continue reading or to download. Of course there should be a reason for people to want to share (bonus tips, ebooks, coupons, etc). This is an easy way to get more traffic on social media directed to your best pages. There are 8 major social networks built-in with options to Tweet, Like, +1, Share, Follow etc.

14. Social Login Free WordPress Plugin

Social Login Free WordPress Plugin

Make your WordPress site social with the Social Login plugin that allows your visitors to login, register and comment with over twenty social networks such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn and even PayPal. You can choose where to display the widget with a single click. Alternatively, you can use shortcodes to place the plugin wherever you want. You can also activate a social plugin widget for your sidebar. Basically, this plugin is easy to use. The plugin is maintained by OneAll, and is a great way to improve user engagement on your WordPress or BuddyPress site.

15. SharePlus Beautiful Premium Social Sharing WordPress Plugin

shareplus-social-media-plugin-for-wordpress-wpexplorer

Share+ is indeed a “…beautiful way to share your site…” however, beauty does not equal functionality (or utility), so we have to delve into the technical details to determine whether the developer means business or he’s just talking a good one.

To begin with, Share+ was built using jQuery, HTML5 and pure CSS3. This is great a direction to take because it means the plugin is future proof and easy to modify. Speaking of ease, all that is required on your part is uploading the plugin, activating it and three clicks in the direction of configuration and your work is done. Other than that, you can use Share+ on dynamic and static web pages without problems since it is client-sided (does not require a server to run).

The plugin comes with a visually appealing (or rather beautiful) admin panel and five thrilling themes that will change the social sharing experience for your users. Finally, the plugin supports several social networking sites and gives you the power to track social sharing activity using Google Analytics.

16. Social Warfare Ultimate Free Social Sharing Plugin

Social Warfare Ultimate Free Social Sharing Plugin

Social Warfare is more than just a social sharing plugin – it’s an entire social solution. The plugin includes social sharing buttons for the most popular social networks (Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc), options for social button locations (above or below content, both, or manual), click to tweet functionality and easy to use shortcodes (plus custom hooks). If you want more features, checkout Social Warfare Pro for even more social network integrations, image Pin it hover buttons, style and text customizations, custom designs, social proof minimum, short-links and tons more.

17. SocialFans Responsive Social Counter Premium WordPress Plugin

SocialFans - WP Responsive Social Counter Plugin

Built on Bootstrap 3, this Retina ready social media plugin packs quite a punch and enables you to display the number of your social account fans/subscribers/followers. It ships with a lot of features including numerous social networks, animated transitions, translation ready files and the ability to create custom skins.

To top it all, the developers provide quick responses to support queries (they endeavor to respond within 24 hours). It’s quite a clever thing to do: providing quick response for a “responsive” social media plugin (yes – pun intended).

18. Open Social Share

Open Social Share

Developed by the zealous guys at LoginRadius, Simplified Social Sharing plugin allows users to share your content via their profiles on over eighty social networking sites. Additionally, Simplified Social Sharing supports WordPress, BuddyPress, and BBPress and runs on LoginRadius SaaS. You can choose different themes to display your social media icons and take advantage of the available customization options to add your widget to various parts of your website e.g. feeds, pages, posts etc. Simplified Social Sharing comes in two versions: a free version and a paid version that accords you a set-up service and 24/7 email support amongst other privileges.

19. Microblog Poster – Auto Publish on Social Media

Microblog Poster – Auto Publish on Social Media

The Microblog Poster social media plugin for WordPress helps you to publish your content to various social networks automatically. The plugin supports multiple accounts per social networking site meaning you can cross post to several accounts on the same social network. On top of that, you can format the update message to create varying versions for your different social networking platforms. The plugin is easy to configure, use and supports shortcodes.

20. Revive Old Post Premium WordPress Plugin

Revive Old Post WordPress Plugin

Revive Old Post is a useful social plugin since it can help you be more active on social media as well as keep your content relevant. With this plugin you can share your content to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Xing and Tumblr automatically. Just setup your sharing options (posts, pages, post types), include hashtags or your @name and then track your clicks thanks to Google Analytics integration.

21. MashShare Social Media Share Buttons Free WordPress Plugin

MashShare Social Media Share Buttons

The MashShare “social media ecosystem” is a free social sharing plugin that you can use to make it easier for your readers to share your content. And for those of you in the EU, this plugin is also DSGVO compliant so you have nothing to worry about. Plugins features include integration with major social networks, share buttons, video share popup, sticky share bar, most shared posts widget, short url integration, support for AMP, Google analytics integration and more.

22. Ultimate Social Share Buttons and Fan Counters Premium WordPress Plugin

Ultimate Social Share Buttons and Fan Counters Premium WordPress Plugin

The Ultimate Social plugin really does live up to its name! Packed with more than 25+ social buttons, 22+ fan counters, 8 pre-syled skins, 20+ display location and easy to use shortcodes it’s an awesome social sharing addition to any website. Plus it’s fully compatible with popular plugins that add their own custom post types such as WooCommerce, Exchange, Easy Digital Downloads, BuddyPress, bbPress and even the WPBakery visual page builder.

23. Feed Them Social Feeds Free WordPress Plugin

Feed Them Social Feeds Free WordPress Plugin

Add a simple social feed to any post or page using the free Feed Them Social plugin. Just install the plugin then add the social feeds you want to display. This plugin work with Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and generates a custom shortcode for each feed you create so all you have to do is copy and paste to insert into your content.

24. Social Share & Locker Pro WordPress Plugin

Social Share & Locker Pro WordPress Plugin

Promote your content better with the Social Share & Locker Pro plugin. The plugin comes with 44 share buttons to choose from and more than 100+ networks supported – so there is not lack of options here! Best of all the plugin combines social share and content locking, this way you can require shares on your best content just as easily as you can add your social links to your sidebar.

25. Share Buttons by AddThis Free WordPress Plugin

AddThis Social Share Plugin

AddThis is one of the top solutions for social share buttons, and adding them to WordPress is now super easy thanks to the free AddThis Share buttons plugin. Just install the plugin then use the options to start building your share buttons. Choose a layout (sidebar, inline or custom HTML), add a share counter, select your social networks, set your style options and use advanced settings (for share count threshold, follow message and more) before publishing your share buttons. You can also use the shortcode to add your buttons to any content manually.

26. NextScripts: Social Networks Auto-Poster Free & Pro WordPress Plugin

NextScripts: Social Networks Auto-Poster

The SNAP (Social Networks Auto Poster) by NextScripts is a freemium plugin you can use to automatically publish and share your posts on social media. Link up to your Twitter account, Facebook profile, Google+ page and more than 30+ other social networks that are supported. Then use the plugin features to setup hashtags, url shortening, images, and more.

Wrapping up the Best Social Media Plugins for WordPress

Hopefully you enjoyed the roundup, and perhaps decided to give one of the best social media plugins for your WordPress site a try. Which social media plugin (or plugins) do you use on your WordPress site? Did I leave out a plugin or two that you feel should have appeared in this post? Let me know your thoughts about which really are the best social media plugins for WordPress in the comment section below!



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How to Add Inline Content Ads to WordPress


Beginner bloggers and online marketers often make the mistake of placing ads in headers and sidebars. Although these locations can yield some decent results, advertising platforms typically recommend learning how to add inline content ads to WordPress. An inline advertisement is shown in your post or page content, so maybe right below the first or second paragraph or scattered throughout a blog post to improve conversions.

Inline ads can be seen as somewhat distracting to users, so that’s why it’s important to use them sparingly, and somewhere toward the top and bottom of your post or page, to ensure that you’re getting enough clicks.

How do you add inline content ads to WordPress?

This sounds like a complicated task, since going to Google AdSense and copying the code manually into every individual post is going to take forever. You might be able to get away with this for a newer, smaller blog, but eventually, you need a way to place an ad inside every post (in a specific location) without having to copy and paste the code manually.

Luckily, several plugins allow for this functionality, most of which cut out the majority of coding that you would have to complete otherwise. There’s still a bit of code copying, from places like AdSense, but it’s not more than a five minute task. For this tutorial on how to add inline content ads to WordPress, we’re going to make the demonstration using the Google AdSense network. This is mainly because it’s one of the most popular ways to get dynamic ads on your site, and it’s known for delivering relevant ads.

1. Create an AdSense Account (Or Any Other Add Network Account)

Google Adsense to Add Inline Content Ads to WordPress

Go to the AdSense website and either create an account or login with one of your previously created Google accounts. We’re not going to walk through the entire Google AdSense process right here, but we do have a great article for configuring AdSense properly for your blog. That said, the process mainly entails getting your account activated and verified, while also generating individual ad units or going to the Auto Ads section for the most effective method.

Google Adsense Formats

Once you create your automatic advertisements, it provides the code needed for dynamic ads based on what your users have searched for in the past.

2. Install and Activate the Ad Inserter WordPress Plugin

Ad Inserter – WordPress Ads Management Plugin

Quite a few plugins are available to add inline content ads to WordPress, but one of the most feature filled and easy to use is called Ad Inserter. Therefore, install the Ad Inserter plugin, then go ahead and activate it. Most of the default settings are fine right out of the box, but you will have to go in and specify how and where you would like the ads to show up.

3. Set an Advertisement to Show Up Below the First Paragraph on Every Blog Post

To find the Ad Inserter plugin settings, go to the WordPress dashboard menu and click on Settings > Ad Inserter.

Placement of Inline Content Ads in WordPress

This module looks a little confusing at first, but it’s actually quite simple once you get the hang of it. Not only that, but you’ll learn that it’s by far the best plugin in terms of flexibility or your ad placements.

Create Ad Inserter Blocks

The numbers at the top of the module represent different blocks you can create to add inline content ads to WordPress. So, if I had one ad showing up after the first paragraph of a post, and another ad showing up right before the last paragraph, those would be two separate ad blocks. For this example, we’ll only make one.

Generate and Customize Ad Inserter Advertisements

Take the Auto Ad code or the Ad Unit code from your Google AdSense page and copy it to your clipboard. This would usually be the code that you manually paste into the body of your page, but with the Ad Inserter plugin, you only need to do it once – in Ad Block 1, or whichever you would like to use.

Ad Inserter Areas

By default, the Automatic Insertion area is set to disabled, but you want to adjust that to place the advertisement after a certain paragraph, between comments, or wherever you find it suitable. For this tutorial, we’re selecting the After Paragraph option.

Once you select the After Paragraph field, you have the option to type in how many paragraphs. So, if I’d like this particular advertisement to appear after the first paragraph, I’d type in the number 1.

Ad Inserter Settings

If you’d like to individually enable or disable ads on every post, you have that feature in the dropdown below. However, we figure most people will want the ads to automatically appear on every single post. In that case, select the blank option to remove any post exceptions.

Ad Inserter Settings

You can get really specific with the placement when you add inline content ads to WordPress with this plugin. There are tools for the alignment, style, and post exceptions. Feel free to play around with this to meet your own needs. But for right now, this is the simplest way to place an inline ad in your WordPress post.

Here are my final settings for revealing a Google AdSense advertisement below every first paragraph in my WordPress posts:

Finished Ad Inserter Advertisement Block

Make sure you click on the Save All Settings button before moving away from the page.

4. Copy AdSense Code Into the Head Area of Your Website

There’s also a piece of AdSense code that has to be placed in the <Head> area of your website. This area is found in the header.php file. Search for the <head> tag and place the required code in right below that, even if you already have some other bits of code below the tag. This pushes everything else down, and shouldn’t affect the functionality of your site.

Copy Adsense Code

5. Test the Code on the Frontend of Your Website

I would assume you already have some blog posts published on your website, but if not, go ahead and make a test post. Then the only thing you have to do is ensure that there are enough paragraphs in the article for the advertisement to be displayed. For this tutorial, all I need is two paragraphs, since the plugin recognizes that first click of the Enter key as the end of the first paragraph.

Prepare Blog Posts

As you can see, the backend of your post won’t display any of the ads we implemented. However, you can then click on the Preview or Publish button to see how they show up on the frontend. The frontend display needs a little formatting to make them more visible and appealing, but that can all be done through the Ad Inserter Settings page.

View Ad Inserter Advertisements

In addition, there’s a module in every post that gives you some manual power over inline ads. So, if you added some exceptions to the Ad Inserter plugin you might have a checkbox to remove or include an ad in this particular post.

Ad Inserter Settings: Exceptions

Are You Ready to Add Inline Content Ads to WordPress?

The goal with your inline content ads is to make the advertisements look as natural as possible. This way, people are more likely to click on them and not be annoyed by the disruption.

If you have any questions about how to add inline content ads to WordPress, let us know in the comments section below.



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