This is big news to all my fellow WordPress site owners and should further help you to improve your site’s reach and popularity. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of Facebook due to their repeated mishandling of their users personal data, but from a business perspective they do expose your site to a lot of folks that might not otherwise find your site. Starting today WordPress publishers can easily integrate Facebook features, such as social publishing and mentions, through the new Facebook for WordPress plugin. If I had one concern about this new plugin and its associated features would be site performance. I spent a long time optimizing this site and no matter how awesome this new integration is, it isn’t worth it if it drastically and negatively affects site performance so I will monitor that and let everyone know how that goes.
The plugin was built by Facebook engineers in collaboration with open source partners, and makes it simple for anyone to make their WordPress site more social – no coding required. The plugin will also work on mobile and support internationalization. Up until now you had to work with a decent amount of code or use third-party plugins that didn’t always work right, but now with an official plugin from Facebook things should be a breeze going forward.
Once the plugin is installed, you can cross-post content published to WordPress to your Facebook Timeline and the Facebook Pages you manage. You can also mention the names of Pages and friends as you post to further distribute your content. This will personally save me a lot of time as up until now I’ve had to manually publish all my post to our Facebook page since I couldn’t get the right look and feel with plugins I’ve tried.
The following social plugins are available as WordPress widgets:
- Activity Feed: Shows readers their friends’ activity on the site, such as likes and comments.
- Recommendations: Gives readers personalized suggestions for pages on your site they might like, as well as a Recommendations Bar option to give users the option to add content to their Timeline as they read.
- Customizable Like, Subscribe and Send buttons.
- Comments Box: Makes it easy for people to comment on your site and post back to Facebook, and includes moderation tools. The plugin also features automatic SEO support for Facebook Comments, so search engines can index them to improve your site’s visibility.
The plugin is available for all sites on WordPress.com VIP as well, sorry for all you free folks. WordPress powers 16.6 percent of the web, from The New York Times to People Magazine, and attracts more than 600 million unique visitors each month.