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How to add social media icons to WordPress – A Step By Step Guide

Want to improve user engagement to your WordPress blog? Learn how to add social media icons to WordPress!

Click here to go directly to our step-by step guide.

The social media networks have penetrated into our lives so much that one can become an overnight sensation if their contribution goes viral on the internet.

In this age of blogging where the competition is tough,  the social media presence is used to measure the fame of someone on the internet.

In this tutorial, I’m going to show you how to add social media icons to WordPress in a fun way, so you don’t get bored with learning new thing. Let’s get started!

How to add Social Media Icons to WordPress

Many WordPress themes already support social media icons; that is, they provide social media icons below your posts so that readers can share your posts right away.

Social media sharing icons

Social media sharing icons

However, many of them don’t allow the tracking of “shares count”. Also, it may be hard to reposition the icons as per your needs.
WordPress plugin system on the rescue
We will integrate social media icons through plugins which may requires you to know about widgets, so I’m assuming that you have read our previous blog post on widgets.

ShareThis

ShareThis

ShareThis

Overview

From Wikipedia, “The ShareThis button is an all-in-one widget that lets people share any content on the Web with friends via e-mail, AIM, or text message”. Basically, it’s a way to share a specific content in your blog to pretty much every social media network, thus named ShareThis.

Preview

Social media icons on sidebar

Social media icons on sidebar

Social media icons on footer

Social media icons on footer

Installation

Fortunately, WordPress plugin directory already provides the plugin of ShareThis which only needs to be installed in your WordPress blog.

1) Searching the plugin

In the Dashboard of your WordPress blog, go to “Plugins->Add New” and search for “ShareThis”, you will most likely find the right plugin on top of the plugin search page (Hint: It shows “Smart Website Tools by AddThis” on top of the search page).

ShareThis plugin screen

ShareThis plugin screen

2) Installing the plugin

When you find the plugin, click “Install Now” to install the plugin.

3) Activating the plugin

Once the plugin is installed, click on “Activate Plugin” to activate the plugin.

ShareThis activation page

ShareThis activation page

4) Customizing the plugin

Once the plugin is activated,  it may tell you to customize the plugin or you would need to customize the plugin through “Settings->ShareThis”.

ShareThis plugin customization screen

ShareThis plugin customization screen

4) Sign-in or create and account in ShareThis

You need to create an account in ShareThis, or if you already have one, then you simply need to sign-in with that account. This is necessary for tracking the shares count.

5) Add the tools

Now you can now choose the button style and other customizations.

ShareThis customization tools

ShareThis customization tools

AddThis

AddThis

AddThis

Overview

It is a similar service like ShareThis; that is, it allows you to share specific content on your site to social media networks. Why they chose “Add” instead of “Share” in their service name is above my head (really). Additionally, it allows you to add custom messages screen (i.e., subscribe to mailing list screen, etc.). It also offers the paid pro version which have tons of functionalities which isn’t present in the free version.

Preview

Social media icons on sidebar

Social media icons on sidebar

Social media icons on footer

Social media icons on footer

Installation

(Note: You can skip this section if you are confident enough)

1) Searching the plugin

In the Dashboard of your WordPress blog, go to “Plugins->Add New” and search for “AddThis”, you will most likely find the right plugin on top of the plugin search page (Hint: It shows “Smart Website Tools by AddThis” on top of the search page).

AddThis plugin screen

AddThis plugin screen

2) Installing the plugin

Click “Install Now” to install the plugin.

3) Activating the plugin

Once the plugin is installed, click on “Activate Plugin” to activate the plugin.

AddThis activation page

AddThis activation page

4) Customizing the plugin

Once the plugin is activated,  it may tell you to customize the plugin or you would need to customize the plugin through “Settings->AddThis for WordPress”.

AddThis plugin customization screen

AddThis plugin customization screen

Clicking on “To control your AddThis plugins, click here” will open AddThis’ site in a new tab for you to sign-up (you need to create account to track share counts and for other functionalities).

5) Add the tools

AddThis tools page

AddThis tools page

Once you did sign-up to AddThis, you can easily add tools for your needs.

 

The share counts of a post can be seen in the analytics page of ShareThis and AddThis.

Conclusion

Thanks to the plugin system in WordPress, some plugins are solely created to ease the integration of social media into your WordPress site/blog. Two of the viable options (which we personally recommend) are AddThis and ShareThis.

The two aforementioned plugins support positioning of social media icons to anywhere you want (Sidebar, Footer, etc.) and they also support traking the social media shares your blog post get, so you can know which of your blog post is the most successfull (in terms of sharing).

The rule of thumb for online marketing is to have accounts on pretty much every social media network, so be prepared to spend a good amount of your time on social media networks if you want to hone your online presence.

Integrating social media networks to your blog not only enables the readers to share your blog posts to their networks, but it also improves the user engagement to your site and adds social-media-like features. In the end, your blog will look modern and you won’t lose anything.

Social media integration is arguably the most important thing to consider when boosting your online presence… unless you live in the old age. Do you know any better ways to add social media icons to Wordress? Let us know in the comments section below!

Have a question? Do not be shy and ask us!

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