Did you know? You can add social media icons to your sidebar or footer with just a few clicks, no code or design knowledge needed! Here’s how.
Our blogs are just one of the places we interact with people online. It makes sense to link our blogs to the other networks we use — Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr, GitHub, and more — to share what we publish with our friends there, and to draw new fans to our blogs.
Some themes have social icons built-in, and lots of bloggers create their own custom widgets or use the built-in widgets for Twitter and Facebook. But there’s another, simple way to subtly highlight social network profiles that you might have missed: the Social Media Icons widget.
Use the Social Media Icons widget to add a row of clean, perfectly-aligned icons to your sidebar or footer, no HTML or graphics know-how necessary. All you need is two minutes and the usernames you use on those other sites.
First, head to your blog and open the Customizer. Head to the Widgets tab, select the area where you want to put your social media icons, then use the search bar to look for “Social Media Icons.” When it pops up, click on it to add it to the selected widget area:
Currently, the Social Media Icons widget supports Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, GitHub, Vimeo, and YouTube. If you have other icons you’d like to display, you can do that with a bit of HTML.
Next, you’ll need to tell the widget what icons to display and where they should link. You don’t need your own icons, or even the links to your profiles — just your usernames; the widget does all the heavy lifting. Enter the username for each network you want to display, change the widget’s title if you like, then click the “Save & Publish” button at the top of the Customizer to activate the widget on your blog:
Finally, head to your blog’s home page to see your fancy schmancy new icons. Here they are on my personal blog, under the title “I’m Friendly, Really”:
And here’s a close up of the widget itself. Mine features Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and GitHub:
It’s easy as pie! (Easier, really, because pie crust can be really tricky, especially when it’s humid out.)
Of course, if you’d rather have bigger, more colorful images, or icons that match your blog’s branding, you can still do that with custom text and image widgets. If you’re ready to dig in to custom imagery, we’ve got a great tutorial on creating custom image widgets for non-designers that covers how to make the image itself and how to get it onto your blog.
The Social Media Icons widget is a useful option for bloggers who want a simple way to add graphic icons, and for anyone who wants to link to their social presences while keeping their sidebars streamlined. Give it a try!