A month ago a new customer introduced me to Social Warfare. No, this isn’t a type of fight club where abducted bloggers are taken to and forced to smack each other about until only one survivor exists, though that would be fun to watch. This is a WordPress social sharing plugin.
Update March 2019: We no longer recommend Social Warfare. We now use Social Pug, which has all the same features as Social Warfare and more. It is reasonably priced and comes with a migration tool that restores social share counts captured by other plugins. See final part of this post to get your special installation offer.
The customer loves the way the buttons look, really likes the way the plugin behaves, and absolutely wanted to use it in her website.
Being the awesome web developer that I am, I did what I do best: I researched the plugin, looked at the WordPress support forum, looked at the Github issues tracker and googled for genuine reviews. I returned to the customer and said ‘No. I do not trust this plugin.’ We went with Monarch from Elegant Themes instead.
Chance encounters. New experiences
Then last week I was introduced to another new customer. This one has a site that averages around 800 page views per hour. In case you’re not quick with maths, that’s just a few shy of 20,000 views per day. This one uses.. you guessed it.. Social Warfare.
I had to ask her about the plugin. She said it works well for her. Some of her friends within her social networks complain about the plugin and shout about issues with it but for her and her site the Social Warfare plugin works well.
Time to backtrack
I returned to the customer who originally asked me about Social Warfare and said we will give it a go. Social Warfare works perfectly.
I like it
Did you notice I recently changed the social buttons used on JournalXtra? I have moved JournalXtra from Monarch to Social Warfare. There are no issues so far.
I like this plugin so much that I now advertise it here on JournalXtra. It comes in two flavors: free and premium.
The free social sharing plugin offers the features any new website owner is ever likely to need.
Choose from the top social networks sharing buttons:
Choose where you want the buttons to show with the following placement options:
- Above the post content
- Below the post content
- Both above and below the post content
- None (or) Manual placement with a shortcode
You can have floating share buttons follow your readers down the screen when static non-floating buttons are out of view. Readers will always have easy access to the share buttons wherever they scroll to on your pages.
Other features include:
- Share counts
- Popular posts counted by shares
- Tweet quotes
- Share stats in the WordPress admin area
The premium Social Warfare plugin has all the free features plus bonus extras.
More social buttons:
- Hacker News
Extra button style options:
- Button styles
- Custom colors
- Button shapes
In post share snippet customization:
- Social media image
- Pinterest image
- Social media title
- Social media description
- Bitly URL shortening
- Analytics tracking
- Share count recovery
Share count recovery
An issue with many social sharing plugins is that they only check the share counts of the page URL. What happens when you change permalink structure, edit page URLs, move from HTTP to HTTPS or change domain name? You lose share counts.
Social Warfare has share count recovery features. It will check social networks for page shares that use HTTP and HTTPS. You can set the plugin to get share counts for pages shared under an old URL structure.
Social Warefare is a well-rounded social sharing plugin for WordPress. I am impressed by it. The support requests in the WordPress forums tend to relate to lack of support for errors in old releases of the plugin. In this case, I’m happy to ignore the grumblings of in the forums and use the plugin.
I installed it into 3 sites, spoken with an early adopter who runs a very active site, and seen it used in another 2 popular sites. The plugin appears to be stable and i recommend it as a replacement for Monarch.
Download Social Warfare Premium here. The free version is in the WordPress repository.
Want a Better Social Sharing button?
We moved away from Social Warfare recently. We now use Social Pug in the websites we build, which includes click to tweet and all the other goodies found in Social Warfare but with none of the update headaches and vulnerabilities. It is reasonably priced and comes with a migration tool that restores social share counts captured by other plugins.
We are licensed installers of Social Pug Pro through our WordPress Maintenance and Care company WP Service Masters. Get in touch to get a great price!