Category Archives: What’s New

Introducing Our Newest Sharing Experience

We’re happy to announce major updates to the AddThis sharing tool suite: the new design we’ve been testing in AddThis Labs graduates today, with a slew of new features. Go grab the new code!

We’ve written before about the mind-boggling amount of data every day, and how we use it to provide insights both to our publishers and into trends across our network. But we also use data to drive and refine our own processes and designs. Today, we’ve used what we’ve learned to make sharing even easier, and more personal. That means more engagement from your visitors, more sharing, and more traffic for your site.

Simpler design.

First, we have a new look. We’ve streamlined and simplified the compact menu. We’ve made our email form a lot easier to use, like the email clients you’re already familiar with. Our expanded menu’s been optimized for faster sharing to the most popular services in your region, and easier searching for your personal favorites. (As always, we’ll highlight the services you use for even easier sharing next time.) We’ll take advantage of jQuery on pages that already include it for simple but lovely transitions. And while our new platform takes advantage of HTML5 and loads of modern browser features, we won’t leave you out in the cold if you’re stuck on IE6–though, seriously guys, it’s time.

In Labs, the updated design increased sharing by 11%. In production, it’s going to do even better–due to our second major update.

Instant sharing.

Sharing to Facebook or Twitter used to mean popping a new window. That’s fast, but we figured if we made it even faster, more people would be sharing your content. To that end, we’re introducing “instant” inline sharing to the most popular social networks. If your users link their social accounts with AddThis, they’ll be able to share directly to Facebook or Twitter without even leaving your page. The new inline interface means there’s no extra page load–that means more unimpeded sharing. Even better, once a user authenticates, they’ll remain logged in on every single site with AddThis, until they log out. Everybody wins.

Adding social sign in to our sharing tools doesn’t just mean it’s easier to share. It also means it’s a lot easier to personalize your AddThis experience–easily choose the services you want to see once, and you’ll see them across all the sites that use AddThis.

Pain-free pinning.

Our recent updates for Pinterest are fully integrated with the new design. We’ve created the simplest and easiest way to integrate with Pinterest: almost no work necessary! Put AddThis on any page you want to make pinnable, and we’ll show a simple, elegant lightbox to showcase all the images on your page for your users to pick from. You can always specify your own image, too, if you want! We’ve found this feature can boost sharing to Pinterest by 20% or more.

You can add all these capabilities to your site with one simple code snippet. Take a look and try it out!

Our plugins for WordPress, Magento, and Shopify will be updated this week to support the new surfaces.

Questions? Comments? As always, we’d love your feedback.

Introducing Social Sign In

We’re stoked to announce the newest addition to AddThis Labs:
Social Sign In.

You’ve probably noticed that many websites now allow you to register or sign in using one of your existing social network accounts, like your Facebook username or your Twitter ID. It’s not just a startup fad; in fact, there’s solid science behind it. Blue Research studied the holiday shopping habits of US consumers and noticed that the vast majority of us are annoyed by having to create a new account to use a site, and would generally rather use one of our existing social network accounts.

If you’ve ever had to register on an obscure website just to buy one perfect gift, you probably know exactly how this feels! Even outside of retail applications, users are much more likely to register for and engage with your site if the process is bootstrapped with their existing online identity–some research has shown users authenticating socially spend up to 50% more time on site than the rest.

Seeing the value of social authentication is easy. Building it, though, hasn’t been. Most existing social authentication solutions have either required a lot of complicated server-side programming; mastering the ins and outs of OpenID, OAuth, and other specifications; or paying for a hosted solution and thus giving up control over your users’ data, not to mention some of your budget!

Our approach is simpler. And it might be the right one for you.

Example of Google, Twitter and Facebook sign in buttons
Use their standard buttons, or design your own.

Social Sign In by AddThis is a straightforward JavaScript library that makes it easy to strengthen your relationship to your users by adding Facebook, Twitter or Google authentication to your site.You provide the application keys for each service you’d like to integrate. We take care of rendering the buttons and managing the authentication flow. When a user successfully authenticates, we provide the data directly to you, via JavaScript.

Some of the social data you’d get,
if I logged into your site using Social Sign In.

From then on, it’s your show, whether you want to pre-fill a registration form, directly create a new account, or store the data for later analysis. Our goal is just to make it easy to bring your users’ social data to your site, whether for registration, authentication, or personalization. You can try it out live on our Labs page.

Want to offer as many services as possible? No problem. Regardless of the network used, the data comes back in the same format — so you only have to write code once.

Like all our tools, you’ll get data in our analytics dashboard, too. We’re starting by keeping track of what networks your users are logging in with, but we’d love your thoughts on other information that might be relevant.

To make integration even easier, we’ve open sourced a fully functional demo in JavaScript, PHP and MySQL, with a simple user registration system based on Social Sign In. If you’ve always wanted a user system, feel free to start with ours! Or you can use our code as a basis for integrating Social Sign In into your existing registration and authentication system.

Questions? Comments? We’d love your feedback!

New Social Plugins for WordPress

It’s Friday and we’re celebrating with the addition of two plugins to our AddThis for WordPress social offerings! These plugins are designed to help increase engagement and brand presence for your site or blog AND they’re easy to install — it’s win-win all around! Check it:

1. Follow: Do you have a Facebook fan page, a Twitter handle, a Pinterest board or other external channels for your brand? (A silly question, really.) Want a simple way to aggregate these channels for your most loyal subjects to keep up with you? Grab our easy-to-install Follow buttons and place them on your WordPress site. Don’t limit yourself to Facebook and Twitter – we have LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube and more.

2. Welcome bar: Want to give your users a big “HOWDY HO!” welcome when they land on your site and encourage them to share the page? What if you knew they were coming in from Twitter and wanted them to “follow” you? Install our handy dandy Welcome bar plugin and create action and engagement from users as soon as they come to your pages. Here’s a Welcome bar greeting visitors from the New York Times:

Some other great ways to leverage the Welcome bar:

  • Highlight specific content
  • Identify new vs. returning guests; encourage returning visitors to follow your blog
  • Offer discounts or coupons, if applicable
  • Pump up a current site promotion or contest
  • Cross-promote with a friend’s blog or charitable site you support

In addition to these new plugins we have also increased the performance and added some new hooks to allow publishers to more easily change the behavior of our popular AddThis for WordPress sharing plugin. You can see examples of how to use these hooks here.

Please let us know if you have any questions regarding these new tools and as always, we love feedback/suggestions/high fives, etc. Our community is our most valuable asset and we want to hear from YOU.

AddThis Improved Pinterest Experience Shows 20% Increase in Shares

Pinterest has taken the web by storm, and site owners and page developers have been quick to integrate Pinterest sharing features into their site. Today we’re excited to release what we think is the best and easiest way for pages to integrate Pinterest sharing. We’re not just bragging here… let us prove it!

AddThis now lets sites integrate Pinterest sharing with one simple code snippet and no additional configuration requirements. What makes this special? Developers don’t need to worry about specific configuration to specify images for their pages — something that can be challenging with other tools, including Pinterest’s. Include AddThis, and Pinterest will “just work”.

For example, put AddThis onto any page you want to make pinnable, and AddThis will help visitors choose a suitable image to share. If you already have a specific image in mind, you can always specify that as well. Here’s an example:

And the best part? A test before launch showed a 20% growth in shares.

While on the topic of numbers, we’ve made no secret about the popularity of Pinterest on the AddThis network. Some additional stats:

  • People following brands on Pinterest has increased 26% in the last month.
  • Over 50% of sharing on pinterest via mobile comes from iPad.
  • On average sharing via mobile to Pinterest breaks down to 55% iPad, 17% iPhone, 28% Android versus the network at 35% iPhone, 35% iPad and 30% Android
  • Pinterest users are less tech savvy favoring the browsers that ship with their computer versus installing Firefox or Chrome.
  • In May, referral traffic from Pinterest was higher by 30% than Twitter across the AddThis network.
  • In June, sharing to Pinterest has passed Tumblr and Google +1.
  • Sharing to Pinterest is 6% greater than Tumblr and 7% greater than Google +1.
  • Pinterest dominates in English speaking countries (US, UK, CA, AU).  The top most country that shares via Pinterest that is not English speaking is India, followed by Brazil and Germany.

With numbers that like that, it’s crazy not to give your users easy access to sharing to Pinterest – and now with our easy integration, you have no excuse!

As always, please let us know if you have any questions or feedback about any of the AddThis suite of tools!

Sharing to Pinterest Easier Than Ever with New AddThis Optimizations

If there is one thing clear in the current world of social media, it’s that Pinterest is HOT.

On the AddThis network alone sharing to Pinterest has grown 1750% since the beginning of the year. Referral traffic from Pinterest (clicks) has grown 4300%!

With numbers like that, it’s no surprise we’ve also had a very vocal community of publishers and bloggers telling us loud and clear, they want easy sharing to Pinterest and they want it now! So, we are beginning to test a way to share to Pinterest that requires no configuration and gives your visitors a simple way to pin their favorite photos to their Pinboards.

Before, sharing to Pinterest was only available to publishers who configured their sites with the appropriate tags. The configuration was somewhat trickier than we’d prefer our standard, easy-to-grab AddThis button to be – we want to do the work so you don’t have to.

You can add this piece to your AddThis code:

var addthis_config = {
ui_use_image_picker : true

If there is an existing addthis_config, you can add this in it:

ui_use_image_picker : true

We’ll be rolling out this awesome new way to share to Pinterest to all users in the near future, but if you can’t wait you can turn on the feature now by changing your addthis_config.  Note that IE will remain as the old version until we release this to everyone.

If you have any feedback or support questions, please drop a note below or visit our help center!

Floating Vertical Buttons

By popular demand, we’ve designed floating vertical buttons to scroll with your visitors as they read your content. This makes sharing convenient and simple.

The vertical bar comes in a variety of sizes. By default, it floats on the top left side of the page, to make your sharing tools always visible. It’s easy to implement and won’t interfere with your site.

If you’ve installed this tool on your site, drop us a line so we can feature it. Here are some folks using it:

Extending the Platform with New Traffic and Engagement Tools

Today is a good day because we’ve got a bunch of new features to announce!  We’re adding two new tools to our suite of social plugins: Welcome bar and Trending content box.  You already know about our Share and Follow buttons, used on over 14 million domains.  Our new Welcome bar and Trending content box are typical AddThis — easy to install, fully customizable, and backed by actionable real-time analytics.  The Welcome bar helps you optimize your site for incoming visitors, and the Trending content box helps you drive more traffic within your site.  We’ve added deeper engagement analytics for our Follow buttons, and now report on copied-text as well.  We’re giving you the broadest view of your engagement anywhere, and the tools to increase it.

Here’s a quick summary of the new stuff.

Welcome bar
The Welcome bar is all about optimizing your site for your incoming visitors. It lets you look at where your visitors are coming from, determines what type of visitor they are, and welcomes them with a specific call-to-action.  These calls-to-action are presented as a horizontal bar at the top of the page containing custom messages and action buttons.

These actions will help you optimize for specific goals such as increasing follower counts, growing registrations by rewarding loyalty, and more. For example, want to increase membership by offering a free trial to returning visitors? It’s easy.

As with all AddThis social plugins, you’ll get in-depth insights into how the Welcome bar is performing via a new module in your analytics summary.

Trending content box
When you use AddThis to power sharing for your site, our data-processing platform knows which content is working for you across your social channels.  The Trending content box is a customizable plugin that helps you surface this content to drive more traffic within your site.  Designed to fit seamlessly into your pages and automatically feature the most trending, popular, or network-specific content, the Trending content box helps to increase overall traffic and site retention.  Want to customize the look of your Trending content box? No problem – we’ve designed it to be completely configurable to match your site’s look-and-feel.

As for analytics, there’s a new module on the summary report that shows you how many additional pageviews this plugin is generating for you.

Like the Welcome bar, the Trending content box interface is fully-customizable via APIs — you can grab a great experience out of the box, or make it blend in seamlessly with the rest of your site.

Engagement Analytics
On top of the analytics we’ve added for the Welcome bar and Trending content box, you’ll notice something else the next time you log into your analytics console.  We’re now showing you copied-text data — key words and phrases your visitors are copying out of your pages. You can see which text is resonating, and which keywords might help you attract new visitors via SEO or potentially keep your visitors engaged longer.

AddThis now gives you the richest real-time view of your social lifecycle.  Building on our recently announced Follower reporting, and the full-lifecycle social analytics you already know and love (including our address bar tracking), this new copied-text reporting provides another piece of your social optimization puzzle.  And again, its not just about analytics — this data powers all of our social plugins.

We’ll be diving deeper into each of these new capabilities, and the ways in which you can use them to drive traffic and engagement, in followup posts over the coming week or two.  For now, check em out and let us know what you think!

Pinterest Available in the AddThis Services Menu (And Some Fun Facts!)

If you already have AddThis on your site, it is now easier than ever to provide your users the ability to share to Pinterest. All you have to do to get Pinterest into the AddThis sharing menu is add a little bit of code so we can grab an image from your page.

Replace the URL of the image the pin is on, and place this within the <HEAD></HEAD> of the page:

<meta property="og:image" content=""/>

You might even have this line of code already on each page of your site. This open graph tag is used by multiple services, including Pinterest and Facebook, to display an image with the shared content.

We recently discussed the popularity of Pinterest and since, the service has continued to grow. Because we are so enthusiastic about everyone’s penchant for pinning, here are some fun facts from the AddThis network:

  • Content is shared to Pinterest (11%) via mobile devices more than Facebook (7%) and Twitter (9%)
  • Almost 35% of all content shared to Pinterest via AddThis is food. NOM!
  • The US, UK, Canada and Australia are all the most socially engaged countries on Pinterest

Dont forget, we also support the Pinterest “Pin It” button, if that’s your preferred implementation. One of the biggest advantages of leveraging the AddThis Pinterest sharing tools is the great insights you will gain through our analytics about how your users are “pinning” your content.

Now get back to your boards, people.

New Follow Buttons, Including Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram

Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram and FourSquare have all been added as options in the AddThis Follow tools. They join the already available Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Flickr, LinkedIn and Vimeo buttons. It is now easier than ever to promote your various social channels on your site and encourage visitors to follow your brand.

As with all our tools, we want to give you insight into how the buttons are performing, so make sure you sign up for the AddThis analytics to see which channels your users are going to and even more than that – which pages on your site are actually generating the followers.

If you have any questions, please feel free to head to our support page and we’ll help you get some answers.