Social Warfare by Warfare Plugins has long been one of my favorite social sharing plugins. And, for a while, I loved shouting about how great their plugin was to anyone who asked for my recommendation...
...Heck, I even wrote a complete unbiassed review of SW here.
Recently, though, things haven't been going so well for Social Warfare. From a customer point of view, that is.
I have zero ideas as to what the f**k has been going on over at the Social Warfare camp over the last 12 months. They seem to have had a bit of a rollercoaster ride.
As well as promoting Social Warfare on my blog here, through the reviews and tutorial videos that I've done, I've also used this plugin on many client website design projects in the past.
Sadly, I recently had to ditch their social sharing plugin for something else called Social Pug, which I'll talk more about in just a second.
This wasn't something I wanted to do, of course.
OK, so you might just be wondering what the actual f**k is wrong with Social Warfare?
Well, I don't really know. Problems always stem from somewhere, but who knows.
You might even be one of the few lucky individuals that never really experienced any problems with using the SW plugin. I'd be very surprised, though.
But all I know is that their once flagship plugin, for me at least, and perhaps for you too, has now slowly declined to become a total degraded flop.
OK, not a total flop perhaps, that might sound a bit harsh, but they're almost there dammit. And that's my honest opinion.
Here's how it all began.
It all started when Social Warfare, the plugin itself, became responsible for bringing down a ton of WordPress sites, and I mean a lot of sites.
How did this happen?
Well, what Warfare Plugins, the company, did was release a buggy, unstable, and what appeared to be an untested update for the plugin. This caused many, many WordPress sites, including mine, to f**cking crash and burn. (White screen of death).
Social Warfare used to be the flagship social sharing button.
This is something you wouldn't expect to happen, especially for a premium plugin. When you pay the premium plugin, you expect the very best.
So, as a result of this unstable update, some folks were completely locked out of their sites, including a number of my web design clients.
After several revisions later and a string of complaints from customers on social media, it was finally fixed. But, only to be followed by degraded website performance.
Yep, we got a fix alright, at the cost of Social Warfare actually slowing down the page load times of WordPress sites.
Check out these posts from other users of Social Warfare -
What I did, myself, at that time was to temporarily disable Social Warfare entirely.
After some time, when I thought it was safe enough to do so, I reinstalled the updated versions of the plugin and things were fine for a very short while until the next big thing blew up.
Once again, Warfare Plugins were in the lime light for the wrong reasons.
I cannot speak for others, but that was the last straw that broke the f**king camel's back for me. I switched over to Social Pug and have been happy ever since.
Well, kind of happy because I do miss using Social Warfare, they were a great plugin.
I really hope so. I still have some faith left in the Warfare Plugins team, and I do hope that someday they'll bounce back with SW.
Even though I have written a review about SW in a positive manner, I would now not recommend using the plugin, at least until the company has rebuilt their reputation, earned back the trust of their customers, and made their plugin great again.
Look, I'm not saying they've completely crashed and burned in any way, but they just don't seem to be the company they used to be.
To defend some small part of their corner, they didn't ignore the problem. They were determined to fix the issues and they did. But, with persistent issues time after time, it's hard to put trust in a product or service that continues to have problems.
What are your thoughts on Social Warfare? Have you experienced any degraded performance, service, using the plugin over the last year or so?
Anyhow, below is a list of 5 alternatives to Social Warfare that you might just be interested in checking out. Let's take a quick look.
For all you Genesis framework users, you'll love this one. I used this plugin myself for a little while too, and the best thing is that it's FREE. It's simple, it comes with no gimmicks, no fancy options, just plug and darn well play. Happy days.
Genesis Simple Share is 100% free. Get it here.
This plugin is now my No1 alternative to Social Warfare. The buttons are attractive, fully customizable, with just the right amount of options both in the free and premium version. Social Pug already has over 70,000 active users.
You can download and install the free version of Social Pug from WordPress.org, and if you need their premium version of the plugin, then prices start from just $29 per year for a single website. Get it here.
Another awesome plugin that I've had the pleasure of using is the ESSB plugin by AppsCreo. Now, this plugin comes with an absolute ton of options and features, including over 50 button templates to choose from. It's quite overwhelming, actually, and takes some time figuring all the features out. But, it's a great alternative to SW and more importantly, it won't let you down.
Easy Social Share Buttons prices start from just $20. Get it here.
This plugin, almost similar to Social Pug, has a lot to offer too. There are 30+ social networks to choose from, customizable buttons, share count recovery, URL shortening, top posts by share count widget, and more.
You can download the free version of Social Snap from the WP repository, or check out the premium version. Prices start from $39 per year. Get it here.
Monarch is a popular social sharing plugin created by the team over at Elegant Themes. Like the others, this plugin comes with a ton of options for customizing the look and feel of your sharing buttons, with over 35 networks to choose from, and 5 placement locations.
It's a little bit more expensive than the other plugins mentioned above, at $89, but you do get access to more all of the Elegant Themes products. Get it here.
So, there you have it. You now have no excuse to swap Social Warfare to something a little bit more reliable for your website.