Best and most effective SHARE design on a blog?


Share buttons and the social network icons for digg, twitter, facebook, etc. come in all shapes and sizes. When speaking to middle-america though, it is safe to say that most people have no idea what digg or StumbleUpon are.

Is there any usability research about styles for this section of your blog that are effective in driving engagement? What designs have you seen that look really good and effectively communicate "share"?
I'd argue that the tried and true, "email this" or "invite" might be more familiar to most non-internet savvy people such that sure, while we WANT people to digg and twitter us, at the end of the day we really just want more readers and more of our readers spreading the word.

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asked Dec 1 '09 at 04:37
Paul O'brien
521 points
Top digital marketing agency for SEO, content marketing, and PR: Demand Roll
  • I've found those "share" buttons annoying and make me think the bloggers using them are just trolling/whoring for attention. They turn me off. – Tim J 14 years ago
  • Frankly, I agree on the share buttons and yet, they work. What I'm exploring is a design that communicates to readers that the site/blog is part of a social community. Less, "Please do this" and more, "we're a part of..." I think @olalonde is closer than perhaps considered, the Twitter and Facebook buttons do accomplish the share functions but they do more than that; effectively communicating engagement with those buttons (i.e. x# of tweets). Are there any unique and integrated designs that accomplish that even more successfully? – Paul O'brien 14 years ago

2 Answers


We've found a manageable and well thought out solution with ShareThis. It's unobtrusive and provides a super easy interface that is simple for beginners and yet provides connectivity to virtually every social media outlet.

answered Dec 1 '09 at 05:59
Keith De Long
5,091 points


I like the TechCrunch approach: a retweet and Facebook share button. Those are the top 2 hottest social networks right now: everyone is on at least one of those two. Adding more buttons simply adds complexity and confusion.

answered Dec 1 '09 at 09:45
Olivier Lalonde
2,753 points
  • I agree with olalonde. Keep it simple. Facebook and Twitter are huge right now. – Matt 14 years ago

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