How to connect your social media feed into WordPress

Social media is a useful tool for driving traffic to your website. By now, most businesses doing online marketing accept that as a fact.

In addition to using social media to get people to visit your site, you can also use your site to help promote your social media feeds. 

One of the ways to do that is embedding your social media feed to your website in WordPress.

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4 Steps to Connect Your Social Media Feed to Your WordPress Site

Below, we walk you through the four steps you need to take to connect you social media feed into WordPress.

1. Determine what social media channel(s) you want to include. 

The other steps on this list will depend on which channel or channels you decide to embed on your website. If you’re sticking with adding the feed for one channel, you may be able to use a widget or code provided by the social media site.

This option is available for:

For each of these social channels, once you’ve generated the code you need, you can drop it into the HTML of your website on the page where you want the feed to appear. 

2. Choose your social feed WordPress plugin.

If you’d like the option to add a feed not included on that list, to include more than one channel in your feed, or to avoid having to deal with code, there are a number of social media plugins you can choose from.

Some of the top choices include:

  • JuicerJuicer is a free plugin that lets you pull in feeds from a number of different social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Tumblr, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Yelp, amongst others. 
  • Walls.ioWalls.io is a plugin that lets you create social walls that pull in content from multiple social platforms. With the free version you can use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Upgrading to a premium version adds several other platforms to the list, including LinkedIn and Reddit. 
  • Flow-Flow Social StreamThe Flow-Flow Social Stream plugin will add social media walls that pull from your main social streams to any page of your website. With the free version, you can add feeds from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest; and the paid version works with over 14 different networks. 
  • Smash Balloon SocialSmash Balloon Social is an Instagram-specific plugin. You can embed photos from one or more Instagram feeds on your website. It’s both responsive and easy to customize. 

For the most part, these plugins offer similar functionality. Check the specific features and details of using each one to decide which makes the most sense for your needs. 

3. Choose where on your WordPress website you want your social media feed to appear.

Do you want your social media feed to show up on your homepage? On your blog? Specific product pages? Figure out where on your website to add it so it will best accomplish the goals you defined. Wherever you think about adding it, consider if it will help with the main goal of that page, or if it could distract from it. 

As a tip: leave it off your landing pages. Well-designed landing pages should minimize distractions, so that your visitors will only focus on the main action you want them to take. A social feed could take their attention away from whatever else you want them to do.    

4. Choose your feed style.

Almost all the options we’ve provided for adding a social media feed to your WordPress site include a way to customize how it looks. You can generally control size and shape, how many social updates show up, and which types of social updates get pulled in (e.g. everything you share, replies from others, events, hashtags, etc.).

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Some will also give you options to change the color or other visual style elements of how the feed shows up on the page, so you can make sure it matches your website’s overall style. Play around with your different style options to see what works best on your page. 

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3 Reasons to Embed a Social Media Feed on Your Website

Adding a social media feed to your WordPress website won’t make sense for every brand. It depends on your goals and how active you are on social media now. But there are a few cases where embedding a social feed to your website can really pay off. 

1. You want to gain more followers.

If your business is heavily investing in social media and you’re not happy with the level of traction you’re getting now, then gaining more followers is likely a top goal you have. Putting a social media feed on your website is a way to let more of the people that are already interested in your brand know about your social presence. 

By giving them a glimpse of what they’ll see if they follow you, you increase the chances of their doing so. And the benefits will be cyclical, since someone who follows you on social because they see the feed on your website is that much more likely to click a link back to your site that you share on social. 

2. You want to get more exposure for your social updates.

If your social media updates are clever and provide real value to your audience, then you want more people to see them! By putting a feed on your website, every new update you share will be automatically pulled onto your website for all visitors to see. The work you put into social media will pay off that much more. 

3. You want to highlight social interactions with your brand.

If your brand has built a solid community on social media, or you regularly see praise from customers on those channels, then bringing your social feed onto your website can add social proof to the page. A tweet from a customer talking about how amazing your products are, or an Instagram post showing a customer using your product will be more convincing to prospective customers than anything you can say yourself.

How to Choose Which Social Media Channel(s) to Connect

You have limited real estate available on your website and don’t want it to be cluttered. But you probably have a social presence on a number of different channels. How do you decide which to add?

Some of the options available actually let you add a feed that includes updates for more than one social media site, so you aren’t necessarily limited to one. But even if you decide to pull in updates from multiple feeds, you want to make sure what shows up on the site is something you want there. 

1.  Think about where your audience is.

Your visitors are more likely to follow you on social media if the feed they see is from a channel they’re already using. And you’ll be able to display more great customer interactions if the feed you embedded is from a website where people are already talking about you. 

2.  Determine which social channel gets the most engagement.

Social media isn’t just about followers, it’s about interaction. The whole point is to be social. The social profile that’s the most valuable to your brand is the one where customers interact with you by re-sharing your posts, liking, commenting, or participating in conversations. If there’s a particular channel that gets a lot of engagement, that’s probably the best one to highlight on your website. 

3.  Consider your social goals.

What do you want to accomplish on social media? If there’s a particular channel where you really want to grow your presence—even if you don’t get much engagement there now—that may be a better one to embed to help you reach that goal. If you want to highlight what customers are saying about you, then the channel(s) with the most conversations happening about your brand are the best to include. 

Consider what you want this feed to accomplish for both your website goals, and your social goals. Then choose the channel that will best help you achieve them. 

Social Media and Websites Can Support Each Other

Both your social media profiles and your WordPress website are opportunities to interact with your customers directly. Joining the forces of the two presents an opportunity to improve both. You can encourage more people to follow you on social media, and bring the great content that exclusively lived on your social platforms to your website visitors as well.

Kristen Hicks is an Austin-based freelance content writer and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to learn new things. She uses that curiosity, combined with her experience as a freelance business owner, to write about subjects valuable to small business owners on the HostGator blog. You can find her on Twitter at @atxcopywriter.