I’m pleased to announce one of the biggest updates to Social Warfare to date. We’ve been working on this thing day in and day out for quite some time.
We’ve rebuilt most of the core behind-the-scenes functions, added dozens of style combinations, added live button previews on the admin, optimized a lot of file sizes, switched to vector icons, squashed a couple of bugs, added UTM tracking code to links, and added minimum share count functions.
We’ve officially dubbed this update “Better. Faster. Stronger.” [Image credit: thoughthinker]
More than 75 style and color combinations
This update changes everything in regards to how the plugin will display visually on your site.
For quite some time, we’ve offered 1 visual style with 11 color set options. We’ve now expanded that to 6 visual styles with 14 color set options. This allows for over 75 different style combinations to choose from.
The visual style determines the shape and layout of the buttons. The color set determines the color, the outline, and the hover effect to be used with the style. By mixing and matching, you can create the look and feel that works best for you and your site.
Added a Live Preview of All Styles
We’ve also made it easier than ever to choose a layout. As you select different styles and colors sets, a live preview of the buttons changes in real-time allowing you to quickly and easily see what each option does.
Cleaned and Organized the CSS
We’ve also spent a lot of time and effort into reorganizing the CSS that controls the look and feel of the plugin. We now have the styles set up to make it easier than ever to keep expanding. And even though we’ve expanded from 11 options to more than 75, the actual file size of the CSS is now only two-thirds the size that it used to be.
What’s that mean? It means more options and faster page loads.
In fact, even though we’ve been adding features, we’ve reduced the size of the entire plugin. It used to be close to 1.4 MB. Now it is just barely over half of that size.
Switched from Image Background to Font Awesome
All of the social icons are now powered using Font Awesome. This means faster page loads since we’re now loading one font rather than multiple transparent PNGs.
It also means that the icons are clearer and sharper than ever before since they’re now powered by vectors. No matter if you’re viewing on a regular display or a high density display (such as retina displays) the icons will always look super crisp.
Track All The Data with UTM Tracking Codes
A UTM code is a short piece of code that we place at the end of the links that are being shared by way of the Social Warfare share buttons. With this simple bit of code attached, Google Analytics is not only able to tell your which traffic is coming to your site by way of social media platforms, but also which portion of that traffic is coming to your site as a direct result of links being shared via Social Warfare.
This will make it even easier for our users to see how Social Warfare is driving traffic to their site. That is a huge deal for us!
Minimum Share Counts FTW!
Many users have been requesting the option to hide the share totals until a minimum number of shares have been achieved. After all, who wants to display to the world that your post has been shared a grand total of zero times during that initial time when a post is first published.
By using this setting, you can now hide the share totals until the post has been shared 5, 10, 100 or whatever number of times you wish.
Rebuilt the Core Function
I’ve also spent an intense amount of time rebuilding the core function that powers the Social Warfare buttons. Now, right out the shoot, this hasn’t introduced any new features to speak of, but it does set the stage for new features. Here’s a few features that will be coming down the pipeline very soon as a direct result of restructuring that function.
- The ability to share buttons on one page that reflect and share links to another page. This would be great to place on Thank You pages where users would then share links to the landing page where they signed up from.
- The ability to add Social Warfare buttons directly from the WordPress post editor using any style or color set you want for that particular page.
- The ability to add Social Warfare to text widgets.
This update has a lot of moving parts, and as such, there will most likely be a few bugs here and there. If you notice anything out of place after upgrading, please hop over to our contact page and let me know right away.
In fact, within moments of launching it, we received nearly half a dozen emails notifying us of the same really bizarre glitch. My heart started racing as my fingers danced across the keyboard. I was entering panic mode. But everyone who was reporting it was providing links and screenshots, and we were able to track it down and get it fixed up inside of about a half an hour. You guys rock!
Even in this release, we’re tracking a few very, very minor style issues with a couple of the hover states. We’ll be releasing a minor bug-fix update later in the week to address those.
We currently have several pages of features that we’d like to add on our roadmap. However, many of our greatest ideas come from our users. So please join us in the comments below and let us know what your favorite features are so far and what feature(s) you’d like to see added next.