There are hundreds upon hundreds of Twitter-related plug-ins for WordPress. Seriously, go look.
And yet, in its nine years since launch, Twitter has never released an official plug-in to make WordPress and Twitter play friendly. Until today.
I figure anyone reading TechCrunch knows what the words “WordPress” and “Twitter” mean, so I won’t be awful and explain what those two things are.
Here’s what the new Twitter WordPress plug-in does out of the box:
- Lets you add a one-click sharing button so visitors can tweet out your stuff
- Lets you more easily embed tweets, and customize the color scheme of embedded tweets to match your site’s look. You can change the link color, border color, and pick from a “light” or “dark” look
- Automatically builds Twitter Cards when you share stuff to Twitter
- Helps you add a follow button to your layout
- Tracks ad conversions if you’re running a Twitter Ad campaign for your WordPress blog
If you’re already happy with your third-party Twitter plug-in or custom-built Twitter solutions, this new plug-in … might not do very much in terms of new stuff for you. Hell, your current plug-in may even do more.
One thing it’s lacking, at least at first glance: the ability to embed your Twitter feed, or at least your last few tweets, in your WordPress layout. It’ll do individual tweets, but there’s no mention of feed embedding — and that’s a pretty popular use case for third-party Twitter plug-ins.
But this plug-in wraps up a lot of the basics in an easy-to-deploy package and makes it a bit less necessary to hunt through the forest of unofficial plug-ins just to find one that both currently works and is probably going to keep working in the future.
You can find the official plug-in right here.
[Note: This post originally mentioned that WordPress was reporting crazy high download numbers for the plug-in. WordPress now says this was a bug that has been fixed.]