You don’t have to be a social media ninja to be a successful blogger. (Click to Tweet that!) In fact, your blog posts can go viral without you ever having to share them on Facebook or Twitter.
All you have to do is make your posts shareable.
(And have quality, compelling content worth sharing, of course.)
Here are ten ways to make your blog posts so easy to share that they almost share themselves.
1. one click like buttons
If I want to like your post, I want to like your post. I don’t want to have to open a new window, compose something witty, and press Share. I just want to click Like. Give your readers the generic Facebook “Like” button.
2. no login required
Don’t make your readers log in to a separate sharing network to share your post on Facebook or Tweet about your post. Skip the share plugins that require special login–they won’t get used. (Same with your blog’s comment system: non-techies won’t comment if they have to create an account somewhere.)
3. floating share buttons
Keep your share buttons front and center no matter where your readers are on your post. Use a plugin like Floating Social Bar or Digg Digg to “float” your share buttons above or beside your post. Just be sure to test it on a variety of browser and device sizes–you don’t want your share buttons to be completely missing on small screens.
4. limited sharing networks
Don’t give your readers too many sharing options to choose from. If you use LinkedIn, give them the LinkedIn share button. But if your blog doesn’t have a thing to do with business, there’s no need to offer a LinkedIn share button. Pick the social media networks that you want your blog to be shared on and display those share buttons only. If someone uses a random, obscure social media network, they’ll probably have the bookmarklet or app for it–you don’t have to offer every option on the web in your share buttons.
5. pin it buttons on hover and below image
Avid pinners will pin your posts out of habit, but the average user needs to be reminded to pin posts. Make a Pin It button pop up whenever they move their mouse over one of your images, or custom code a Pin It button below your image. Pinterest’s widget builder has code that makes it super easy to add an on hover Pin It button to all your site’s images with just one line of code. You can also fill out the URL, image, and description and then copy and paste the code to put a Pin It button right below your image (and show the pin count, too).
6. intriguing image descriptions
The Alternate Description of your image will automatically be what pops up in the Pin description. Make sure it’s something that will make everyone want to click and read your post. (The eBook How to Blog for Profit has some great pointers on this topic! Click here for my review.)
7. an image on every page
Images without text and overlays will get pinned, but it’s worth the time to add some text (and your domain name) to your image. Going the extra mile with your images will save you from having to promote your posts: they’ll be shared for you. (Check out Karen Gunton’s free Image Creator Class.)
If you don’t use an image on every post, be sure there’s a pinnable image available in your sidebar or footer. There’s nothing worse than going to pin a post and finding that there’s no image in the post–or anywhere on the site! (Have you read my post 3 No Brainer Ways to Optimize Your Blog for Pinterest?)
8. tweetable and shareable quotes
Your post may be filled with pithy quotes, but if you make your one-liners easy to click and share, you are more likely to be quoted.
Click to Tweet allows you to compose your own Tweets–complete with the post shortlink and your Twitter handle–and gives you a custom link to let people literally “click to Tweet” whatever text you want. (Author Media has a great tutorial on Click to Tweet–be sure to make your Click to Tweets open in a new window or tab so that people come back to your blog when they’re finished!)
Twitter’s button page also allows you to compose your own Tweet with a link to share and insert the official Tweet button in your own post.
The RealTidbits PushQuote plugin allows you to select text and put it in a shortcode to turn it into a highlighted “pull quote” with Facebook and Twitter share buttons. (WPBeginner has a simple PushQuote plugin tutorial.)
9. attention-grabbing title
Your post title is the first thing that someone sees. Make sure it gives them a reason to click and keep reading. (Check out Headline Hacks for viral title templates.)
10. compelling content
It doesn’t matter how many pinnable graphics are in a post, or how many share options are provided: quality, compelling content wins every time. Especially if it’s spelled correctly. (Denise J. Hughes’ eBook On Becoming A Writer: What Every Blogger Needs to Know is a must-read. Click here for my review.)
What’s your favorite way to share the blog posts you read? (And what share plugins do you use?)