With Genesis Club v4.19 we introduced a new social sharing module. This looks better, performs better, and can get more people to share your articles.
The plugin uses the Socicon Font which has been explicitly designed for social media. The font is elegant and created by French designers with a sense of humour: Socicon is pronounced the same as saucisson not sock-icon.
Socicon icons are used for Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+, StumbleUpon and Email. Dashicons are used for the Print and Total icons as there was nothing suitable in Socicons for these
Right now the plugin support has two different skins for the sharing icons; a colored one and a grey one. The colored skin has a blush on mouseover while the grey skin applies the normal icon color on mouseover. We will create more skins in future releases.
There is a also a Total Shares icon that adds up the total number of shares across all social networks. You can choose to show individual shares for each social channel, or total shares, or both, or no counts at all. You can also show the counts either below the social icon or on the right.
Floating PanelThe floating panel social icon can be located relative to the top or bottom, or right or left or center of the page.
The panel of icons has by default a transparent background but if your theme has background image you might want to give the panel a solid background to make it stand out and be easier to read.
Switch To Top And/Or Bottom Of Post Icons
When the device or page width dictates that a floating panel is unsuitable, you can arrange to switch automatically to top and bottom of post sharing icons. You set the device width at which this feature kicks in.
The vertical floating panel can be setup to disappear at a screen width by specifying a Minimum Device Width setting for the panel. You can also set up the horizontal panel to appear for screen sizes smaller than the same width setting. This ensures the visitor always has a social panel available whatever the device width.
The fetching of the count of shares on each social network is better than before in a number of ways which makes it faster and more reliable.
These following items are quite techie in nature:
- There is no use of iframes which can result in failed connections that leave a blank count
- The plugin uses very lightweight HTML to display the social icons and the counts. This keeps the page size small and hence faster.
- From a page optimization standpoint, it is an efficient design, as only a single connection is made from the web page to the server to fetch all the counts, as opposed to having a separate connection to each social media channel. It is the web server and not browser that connects to all the social channels to get the counts. Your pages are therefore less likely to be marked down for having too many connections/domains.
- The plugin operates a “sharecount cache” and therefore does not connect to the social media sites every time a page is visited. Instead it just connects once an hour. The performance load that this feature places on the server is therefore practically zero
New Optional Kickstart Feature
The goal of the Kickstart feature is encourage more people to share your content. It does this by giving a temporary bump to the initial count of shares. The bump declines over time and hence in the short to medium term the bump will be reset to zero and your share count will reflect reality.
The rationale for using Kickstart is that people are more likely to share articles that already have some social love.
You can set the size of the bump using a single value or by specifying a range for each social network. Where a range is given the plugin picks a initial number of shares at random from the range.
You can choose to temporarily disable or remove the Kickstart feature at any time with a single click.