Some people host their wordpress blog on their own webhosting plan rather than at WordPress.com. While many things are the same whether you use the wordpress.org version or the wordpress.com version, there are some differences. One difference is the “follow” button.
WordPress.com blog: adding followers by email or by WordPress reader
On a wordpress.com blog, to add the “follow button” is easy. You are given both the “follow blog” and “follow button” as widgets
- Go to Appearance, click on Widgets
- Under available Widgets, you can choose both of these options: “follow blog” and “follow button”
“follow blog” is an email signup option and it doesn’t matter if a person has a WordPress account
“follow button” allows someone who has a WordPress acount to follow you in their WordPress Reader
- As you know where your widgets go depends on your theme. Some themes only have a sidebar while others have both a sidebar and a footer. Choose the location that you want. For example, I choose “Sidebar”
- The “follow button” will show up at the bottom of the list of widgets in that location. Drag it to where you want the “follow button” to be. I dragged mine to the top.
WordPress.org blogs, ie self-hosted wordpress sites not on WordPress.com
On a wordpress.org blog hosted wherever you want, you don’t have those widgets as a given. Luckily you can download free plugins to give them to you.
Blog subscription by email
- For blog subscription by email, click on “Plugins”, click on “Add New”
- Type “Jetpack” into the keyword search bar
- See “Jetpack by WordPress.com”, click activate
- It will install several widgets for you among other things. Go to “Appearance”, click on “Widgets”
- Click on “Blog subscriptions (Jetpack), click “add widget” to the location you want sidebar, footer, etc
- “Blog subscriptions (Jetpack)” will show up at the bottom of the list of widgets in that location. Drag it to where you want the “follow button” to be. I dragged mine to the top.
When you are done, on your sidebar you will get a “Subscribe to Blog via Email” title and then a field for the email and a submit button. Please note: this does not really collect emails for you personally. It just sets it up for your posts to be sent automatically to a follower’s email. If you want to collect emails for newsletters and such, you are better off using Mailchimp or similar plugins.
Adding followers to WordPress Reader
This is a little different as it’s not a direct widget. You have to add code to a text widget but it’s not hard to do.
- First get the code. Go to “Follow Button Creation” on WordPress.org
- Scroll down to “Button Options”. In the field below type or paste your blog url
- You have several options
show follower count
show blog name
language (default is English but you can change it to any language you like)
- After you have chosen your options, click the “Generate” button
- Copy the generated text
- Go to Appearance, click on Widgets
- Click on “Custom HTML”, click “add widget” to the location you want sidebar, footer, etc. “Custom HTML” will show up at the bottom of the list of widgets in that location.
- Paste the generated text into the “Content:” field. You don’t need a title as the text will generate a button.
- Click “Save”
- Drag “Custom HTML” to where you want the “follow button” to be. I dragged mine to the top.
That’s it. It’ll be on your blog now
Below, I’ve created a video tutorial creating the follow button
Thanks for coming by. I hope this tutorial was helpful to you.
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