Feature Spotlight: Social Sharing Buttons

5 September 2011

We are delighted to announce that we have expanded the social media functionality on product pages. This is available to anyone using the beta version of webstore.

This improvement takes three forms:

Firstly, for Facebook fans, we have added some tagging to your product pages that enables Facebook to better understand what your user has liked.

This means that when a client likes a product, Facebook is told exactly what to display on the customer’s Wall. Here is an image from my Facebook page displaying the title, description and image associated with a product I liked:

Before, Facebook made an educated guess about what should be included in the like snippet, now it is told by Open Graph attributes supplied by the webstore. This brings your store a step closer to the semantic web!

tweetThe second improvement is for shoppers who have followers on Twitter. When shopper clicks this button, Twitter displays a popup that offers them the chance to log into Twitter or, if already logged in, to tweet their followers.

The third improvement is for shoppers that prefer to use Google as their social media platform. The +1 button has several functions: for shoppers logged into a Google account it posts the client’s recommendation to their Google+ page in the same way as a Like button posts to a Facebook page. As an added bonus, it also selectively informs contacts of that shopper that they have given that page their approval. So people on my Google contact list now see my name beside products that I have given a +1 to. In effect, this is a more private version of the Facebook like button.

Now for the technical part!

The three buttons are grouped together in a new options section on the WebStore Manager (WSM). A simple checkbox enables each button separately, allowing you to chose which to show on your product pages.

For web designers, the buttons have been grouped into a NitroScript tag that is included in the products page: {include:panelSocialSharing}. Like all other NitroScript tags this can be moved around to suit the particular store’s design.

For those who aren’t comfortable editing the layout, the default placement and layout is directly under the product description, as shown in the image below.

For the fine tuning of the sharing buttons you can edit the Social Sharing Panel in the WebStore Manager under Edit WebStore Layout.

The idea behind these buttons is to increase customer involvement with your webstore, to enable them to share products that they have liked with their friends, followers and contacts. Let your customers become your advertisers!

Should you have any questions about this feature, or if you’d like to upgrade your store to the beta version to avail of it, please open a ticket on the Partner Portal.