Whether running a fundraising campaign, operating a WooCommerce store or publishing content with a newsletter, you depend on visitors sharing your site with friends. Maybe you already have a stylish email-sharing plugin. It’s a great start. But what happens when a visitor goes to share your page through email?
If they’re sharing with just one person, it’s no problem. But what if they want to share your fundraising campaign with multiple contacts? For the visitor, it suddenly becomes a chore. Copying and pasting emails into multiple fields can get tedious quickly. Chances are, they’ll call it a day after only a few sends.
What if you could allow users to access their contacts and send multiple emails in one go? That would significantly increase shares — and ultimately bring in a larger audience for your content.
In this article, I’ll share my thoughts about Better Sharing. This email-sharing plugin will help you create a vastly improved sharing experience on your site.
Better Sharing for WordPress
There are great strategies for generating more traffic to your WordPress site. One approach is making it as easy as possible for visitors to share your content with others. Let’s face it — sharing online content through email is not very intuitive. And the more steps a user has to go through to share your content, the less likely they will finish the process.
That’s where Better Sharing fills the gap.
The Better Sharing plugin helps you create a user-friendly interface for your WordPress posts and pages. Better Sharing makes it easy for your site’s visitors to share your content with multiple email contacts without the agony of typing and remembering to separate each with a comma. The Better Sharing interface integrates with a Contact Picker service that eliminates the manual process of sharing.
Another feature of the Better Sharing plugin is the ability to customize the text for headers, CTAs, placeholders, and form fields. Creating more personalized emails helps prevent them from getting funneled into spam folders. You can even set up multiple email templates for different types of users. The interface also includes social media sharing buttons as options.
How to Get Set Up With Better Sharing
Better Sharing is a WordPress plugin, and you can use it on its own to create a sharing interface for your posts and pages. However, to fully take advantage of the features of Better Sharing, you’ll need to create an account with CloudSponge.
First, let’s get the plugin installed and check out the features.
Install the Plugin
Start by downloading the Better Sharing plugin directly from its WordPress.org page.
After you’ve downloaded the plugin zip file, navigate to the Admin Dashboard of your WordPress site. Select Plugins>Add New. Click Upload Plugin and browse for the .zip file you saved. Click Install Now, then activate it.
You can also search for the plugin right from your WordPress site and install it as described above.
Now, in your dashboard left-side menu, you’ll see a new item called Better Sharing. Click that to get into the dashboard.
Once inside, you’ll see the Get Started page. There’s an overview of how to get started, plus some handy links to documentation. Those are helpful, but for now, let’s go through the Better Sharing dashboard menu items one by one.
Configuring and Using Better Sharing
In your Better Sharing menu, navigate to Email Templates. Click Add Email Template to create one. You’ll notice that the fields are prepopulated for you, which makes it easy to get up and running quickly.
You can add any of the provided template variables from the right side menu to customize your emails.
The UI Templates section is where you’ll set up the look and feel of the interface for visitors. In your Better Sharing menu, navigate to UI Templates. Click Add Email Template to create one.
You can customize the fields under Social Networks, Referral Link, and Email to help match your brand personality.
Again, you can set up multiple templates to use with different users if you like. Once you have your templates set up, you can place the interface on any page or post using either the shortcode or choosing the Better Sharing block.
Enable the Contact Picker
You can use Better Sharing without enabling the Contact Picker feature, but it’s something you should seriously consider. Utilizing Contact Picker will allow users to select contacts directly from their address book. That seemingly small convenience could mean the difference between someone sharing your page with only a couple of people or hundreds.
Once you have a CloudSponge account, follow these quick steps to configure the settings:
- Under Integrations, find your API Key at the top of the page and copy it.
- Go back to your WordPress site and navigate to Better Sharing > Contact Picker. Enter your API Key in the field and click Save.
- Once saved, the feature is automatically available to your visitors.
Without Contact Picker, visitors must manually type in each email address. As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, that’s not going to go too far. Make it easy for users to share with multiple contacts; chances are they will.
Contact Picker also gives you analytics in your account dashboard. You can track usage and manage integrations right from their platform.
My Experience with Better Sharing
Overall, getting up and running with Better Sharing is fairly intuitive. I was sharing posts a few minutes after installing the plugin. There are a couple of things worth mentioning as I tested.
There are no styling features for the forms, so I added my own styling via Customize>Additional CSS.
It would be great if future versions had this functionality, but if you can write a little CSS, you’re off to the races.
The default greeting template variable in the Email templates is “Hi There!” There’s no intuitive way to change that greeting in the UI, and I couldn’t find it in the documentation.
These are small things that don’t get in the way of the plugin’s functionality, but novice WordPress users may want to get help in those areas.
The Better Sharing plugin is free to install and use forever on as many websites as your heart desires. CloudSponge — the account that gives you Contact Picker — has costs. They offer three-tiered pricing, with increases in features as you move up.
Basic = $50/month
Under Basic, you get unlimited connected address books and Universal Contact Picker for one website.
Branded = $150/month
The Branded tier includes everything under Basic, plus leveled-up customization, including stylesheets and fonts, languages and labels, and white-label branding.
Custom = Starting at $10K/year
The custom level is best for developers and agencies who need even more customization and backend access to create their own branded interface.
Better Sharing is Excellent for Content Creators
You could have visitors share your content with one person or give them the tools to share with hundreds. I know what I would choose.
Better Sharing for WordPress is an easy-to-set-up plugin that will help you increase engagement without much effort.