People love to share articles online, but some of us like to have more options than are presented to us by the site. In fact, this is a common problem. So, we’ve come up with a bunch of tools to see you through.
Sharing what we see and read on the Web has become so popular that most sites count on it for spreading their word. That is why you see social sharing buttons almost everywhere. However, sometimes you want to share or send to a location not listed on the site. This is where Firefox add-ons come in handy.
AddThis [No Longer Available]
For an all-inclusive sharing option, the AddThis extension is a favorite. It has hundreds of sharing options, from popular social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to more obscure locations such as Links Gutter, myVidster, and Stuffpit — there is a huge variety. You can also share to WordPress, Yahoo Bookmarks, PDF Online, and Amazon. Sharing via email and Gmail as well as printing the page are also available.
Setting up the sharing options you like is really easy. You just move the service from the left to the right on the Options screen. You can then reorder those you have picked. In addition, you can select how you want to use the extension. There is a browser toolbar with display options and a context menu for right-clicking any page. You can also include the AddThis button in your navigation toolbar or your address bar.
For a large list of service options and flexibility of how to use this extension, AddThis is by far my favorite all-inclusive sharing add-on.
Share This is another extension that offers the ability to share to multiple locations. It does not have nearly as many services as AddThis, but it does have the most popular sites as well as email sharing. Facebook, Twitter, Delicious, Digg, and MySpace are among the choices. You can also share via email by choosing your provider on the pop-up from Gmail, Yahoo Mail, or Outlook.
You can choose to show the Share This button in your navigation toolbar or your address bar. Setting the sharing locations is as easy as a checkbox. Unfortunately once you choose your locations there are no options to rearrange them. But, the extension still works pretty well with some sporadic buggy behavior.
If you are a Hootsuite fan for sharing to Twitter, Facebook, or even Google Plus, then you might like the Hootsuite Hootlet extension.
Again with a button in your navigation bar, you can quickly share to the accounts you have set up with Hootsuite. The pop-up displays the name of the website or article and a shortened (ow.ly) URL. You can then select your account, add a new one, use the AutoSchedule feature, or manually schedule the post.
You can also edit the post by adding another link, attachment, or location. As a Hootsuite user myself, I have found the Hootlet to be a good extension to have close by.
For Buffer users, there is a terrific extension for you as well. Similar to the Hootsuite Hootlet, the Buffer extension lets you choose which Buffer accounts you would like to post from along with other helpful options.
The post populates with the website or article title and a shortened (buff.ly) URL for Twitter. You can also see the post for other sites like Facebook right beneath it which includes an image, full URL, and a brief description. You have the option to drag a photo into the post, which is a cool feature. You can then choose to Share Next, Share Now, or Schedule the Post.
Now onto the best feature of this extension. There is a Power Scheduler available and with this you can schedule the post for different times under your separate accounts. For example, you can schedule the post for Twitter now, but the post for Facebook eight hours from now. You can also enter custom dates and times. Another great option with the Power Scheduler is that you can customize the post for each one and still add a photo like on the main screen.
I do not use the Buffer extension nearly as much as I should. It has more flexibility than the Hootsuite Hootlet and an even nicer pop-up interface. This might become a new favorite of mine.
Of all the ways to share to Pinterest, the Pinterest Pin Button is definitely the easiest. Once you install this extension it places a button on your navigation toolbar. When you land on a site with an image you would like to share, just click the button and you will see all images on that page. Choose which to Pin and in the pop-up pick your board. You can also select checkboxes to post it to Facebook or Twitter at the same time, if you have those set up in your Pinterest account.
The Pinterest Pin Button is so simple that not using it or at least having it handy would just be silly.
The StumbleUpon extension brings a little extra to the table with a multi-option toolbar. You can share sites to Facebook and Twitter with the click of a button. You can also choose to share with your StumbleUpon connections, add to one of your lists, or send via email. The toolbar also has options to set a tag for the page.
You can quickly Like or Dislike the page or check out your own Likes. If you select the Info button, the page you are visiting will pop into your StumbleUpon and show you others who have the page in their Likes, Lists, or have made Comments. If you want to jump right over to the StumbleUpon site there is a bright button or list of categories for easier navigation.
The toolbar is completely customizable with options for the buttons, position, searching, shortcuts, and more. So, if you are a big StumbleUpon user, this is a terrific Firefox extension for you.
What We Are Waiting For — Twitshot
There is a new service called Twitshot that allows you to expand your Twitter tweets easily with images. You can extract images from links to attach to your tweets. Since images for any post increases the chances of it being seen and shared, this is a really good new way to tweet. Right now Twitshot only has a Chrome extension, so we are hoping that one for Firefox will be coming soon. In the meantime, Firefox users can use the bookmarklet.
Which Sharing Extensions for Firefox Do You Use?
Since we cannot list every possible Firefox sharing add-on that exists, hopefully this variety will help you. Which extensions for Firefox do you prefer for sharing? Whether it is sharing to social media networks or your own email, which do you use the most? Please share your comments and suggestions below!
Image Credit: Beagle puppies in a basket via Shutterstock