(strictly techie today, so feel free to skip this post)
A bazillion years ago, I added a widget at the bottom of my posts to make it easy for people to share things. I picked AddThis.com's widget because you could do ANYTHING (almost) with it ... add to bookmarks, email it, facebook it, stumble it, etc. Looking at the stats on AddThis, I see that almost no one has used it.
Recently, I noticed that my traffic from Pinterest is rising steadily. I figured I'd make it even easier for people to pin my posts. When I looked into adding a Pinterest button, I discovered that it's not as easy as all the other social media buttons because it requires an image to be associated with the button. Makes sense, but it's not something I could just pop onto the page.
Monday night I made some database changes, admin changes, and display changes to add Pin It buttons to every post. Basically, I have a new field to fill in when I save a post ... the link to the image I want to use for the Pin It button. If you click the button for most of my posts, the associated image is my logo, but for the most recent posts, and some of the older popular posts, I've put in an appropriate image from that specific blog post for the Pin It button. Woo hoo!
It was so much fun to add that button, that I decided to upgrade my AddThis widget. I got rid of everything except the Facebook Like button ... because it was the only one with a count next to it. Then I found the code for the Tweet This button with a count next to it and added that one, too.
The reason I didn't use the AddThis tweet button with the count is because when you click the AddThis tweet button, it says "via @AddThis" at the end of the tweet text. If I created the button programatically myself, I could have it say "via @futuregirlcraft" instead. Of course, the tweeter can change the text that gets tweeted, but I didn't like AddThis inserting itself into my reader's experience.
I have no idea how the Facebook Like button works because I don't have a Facebook account. If you ever use it and it seems goofy, let me know.
I like having the counts because it gives me instant feedback about how people feel about my post. Not everyone comments because it takes time, etc, but it's super easy to click the Like/Tweet/Pin It buttons. It's also probably good that you (my readers) aren't presented with a block of 20 little icons to choose from; you can choose to do one of three things easily.
I will go back through my old posts and update them to use an appropriate image for the Pin It button, starting with the posts that are linked to most often, like the blanket stitch post
(which I've already changed). I was thrilled to see that post already has 90 pins!
The other upside is that the purple stripe sweater
post from Tuesday already has 8 pins. I think it is due to the new Pin It button, which is great! I love that people want to share something I've posted. :)
One little rant ... wtf is up with Pinterest making their share button taller than EVERYONE else's button? The whole rest of the world is playing nice and making their buttons the same damn height. I found the css that needed to change and I was all set to override their stylesheet (like I did with the twitter feed in the left sidebar) to make the button the standard height BUT they used IDs in an effing iFrame ... and at that point I'd already been programming for an hour past my bedtime, so I just gave up (I'm not even sure if it's possible to affect the styles in an page shown in an iFrame ...). But woe to you, Pinterest, if I ever *do* have the free time to look into this, because I'm going to cut your button down to size, you bunch of Egomaniacs.
Resources:Tweet button detailsPin It button for websites detailsAddThis.com details