I have been meaning to write up a review for a while now on my new social sharing WordPress plugin that I use on this site and never got around to it. I have had a lot of people ask me over the last couple months what I use. So here it is, check out my Social Warfare review and why I switched to it on all my WordPress sites! You can see it in action on the sidebar of this site as you scroll down.
Social Warfare Review
As many of you know, I am obsessed with speed. I will refuse to use a slow plugin and am always searching for faster and better alternatives. A couple years ago I started using SumoMe, then migrated to Monarch from Elegant Themes, and finally am happy with the Social Warfare plugin. Monarch was very slow and was having lots of issues with admin-ajax.php as they create tons of POST requests. Not sure why, but their plugin in my opinion is not well developed.
I have to give a big shout out to Nicholas Cardot, Dustin Stout, and Jason Wiser, the creators of the Social Warfare plugin. I can honestly say for the first time in years I am finally content with my social sharing plugin and am no longer wasting time trying to improve its performance like I was with Monarch.
P.S. Please don’t speed test this page lol as I couldn’t resist but add a gif, sometimes you have to break the rules!
Installing Social Warfare is super easy. You simply login to the Warfare Plugin’s dashboard and grab the latest version.
The registration process is by far the best I have ever seen with a WordPress plugin. There are no license keys to mess with, you simply put in your email and it pulls the available keys from your Warfare Plugins account. Genius!
They make it super easy on your account to add and deactivate licenses. Here is a snapshot from their dashboard.
It’s Fricken Fast!
I have a little playground site that I experiment with speed. You can see that I have Social Warfare running on perfmatters.io and I still managed to score a perfect 100/100 with Google PageSpeed Insights on both mobile and desktop.That’s right, it’s possible folks, even with a social sharing plugin.
And here is a speed test of the page with the plugin running.
In my setup it doesn’t even add a single HTTP request! That’s right folks, nada. If you are wondering how I did that I would make sure to check out my web perf stack page on that site.
So you can’t really argue anything about the speed of this plugin, it is blazing fast, period.
Twitter Share Counts
Now the next best part! This was just updated recently, but we now have Twitter share counts back. I didn’t have any shares yet on perfmatters.io so I just grabbed a screenshot of my post from last week on this blog. This is a shot from mobile view and you can see the Twitter share count is definitely working! Twitter share counts are an important metric to me and I like letting my readers see the total counts. You can see without Twitter that post would have only had 9 shares.
It’s super easy to active Twitter share counts as they integrated with the newsharecounts.com service. Basically you sign in with Twitter, add your domain, turn it on in the plugin and you’re good to go! Note: this only lets you retrieve 7 days back and then everything from there on forward. So for example, it won’t collect shares from two years ago. But going forward it will grab everything. So the sooner you get this installed and setup the better! Otherwise every day you are missing out on share counts.
Another awesome feature is the ability to add custom Tweets right from within the WordPress editor! Here is an example below. I added this with one simple click. There are different styles to choose from or you can create your own with CSS.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Check out this awesome Social Warfare review, and get your Twitter shares back!” quote=”Check out this awesome Social Warfare review, and get your Twitter shares back!” theme=”style5″]
Individual Post Options
There are also a lot of individual post options you can change. This can dramatically increase your CTR and shares. You can set specific images, with better heights for sharing, custom messages, you name it! If you have a long post you think might go viral, spend the extra time and make sure everything looks beautiful.
And here are some additional screens from within the plugin options. I can’t show you everything as there is a lot, but it is a quick overview at least.
This plugin is totally responsive and as you can see in the screenshot below they let you set the break point for mobile. I was actually one of the ones who requested they add this.
Click to Tweet
They do have link shortening!
And yes they added the ability to change the UTM parameters. As a marketer, I really appreciate this.
This is a pretty cool feature. Ever seen Sniply? Yes, I fricken hate it. It is so annoying. People trying to piggyback off of tweets. This plugin lets you bypass that.
I have been through 2 HTTP to HTTPS migrations now with Social Warfare running and didn’t lose any share counts! Brilliant.
- 5,000 possible style combinations
- Pinterest images
- Twitter cards
- Popular posts widget based on share counts
- Shortcodes so you can place them anywhere
No Social Warfare isn’t free. But I don’t think it should be. I believe in supporting developers who make great plugins like this. They have three different pricing models.
- Lieutenant’s Package – $24/yr – 1 website
- Captain’s Package – $110/yr – 5 websites
- Colonel’s Package – $200/yr – 10 websites
It’s not super cheap, but for me the speed alone made me buy it in seconds. And now that we have Twitter shares back as well it is icing on the cake. Support from the developers has also been good, and they even have a Github page for issues and bugs. They are very transparent which is refreshing.
As you can probably tell I love this plugin! It’s rare that something comes along that is so well built and the developers understand that some of us actually care about web performance and speed, while still giving us all the features we want.
Hopefully this Social Warfare review was helpful for you. If you have any questions about this plugin before buying, feel free to ask me below and I will do my best to answer.