Notification Bars for WordPress
One important part of blogging or running an online business involves getting visitors to notice your most important items or content. Using a notification bar at the top of the site is a great way to draw the visitors’ attention to something specific. It could be an announcement for a new product, an important customer service announcement, a link to a popular blog post, a call-to-action for subscriptions or opt-ins, or any number of things.
Notification bars are often used by bloggers as an alternative to using a popup, which can be more intrusive to visitors than a notification bar. For example, on this blog we’re currently using a notification bar to promote our free e-book that is a bonus for anyone who signs up for our email newsletter. Notification bars can be highly effective, and WordPress users have a number of different options for setting up their own notification bar.
Hello Bar is probably the most popular option, and it was also one of the first notification bars available. Hello Bar is not specific to WordPress, it can be used with static websites and other CMSs as well. While the other options on this list are WordPress plugins, Hello Bar is not a plugin, which adds a few steps to the setup process. With Hello Bar you can customize the look of your bar (colors, textures, fonts), run a/b tests, and get statistics. A limited free plan is available, although it only allows you to get 25 clicks per month to the link used in your Hello Bar, which is less than 1 click per day. For this reason, the free plan is not a viable option for most people.
If the free plan doesn’t work for you, you’ll have to pay a monthly fee to be able to use Hello Bar. Pricing starts at $4.95 per month for up to 100 clicks. Pricing goes up to $49.95 per month for up to 7,500 clicks. Using a monthly fee and basing the price of the number of clicks doesn’t make a lot of sense, in my opinion. As you will see in just a minute, there are several other good options that involve only a low one-time fee and will not place any restrictions on the number of clicks. There are also free options that lack features of the paid options, but still can be a good option when working with a tight budget.
Foobar is a feature-rich WordPress plugin that offers plenty of customization options. We use Foobar here on the Vandelay Design Blog to display our notification bar, and I highly recommend it. Unlike Hello Bar, Foobar can be purchased for a one-time fee of $14. Also, since it is a WordPress plugin, it is very easy to set up from the WP dashboard.
You can create an unlimited number of different Foobars, and you can choose the specific one to use on any post, page, or category. This makes it possible to create notification bars that are highly relevant to specific content, which should increase its effectiveness. You can totally customize the look of your Foobars, including colors, height, shadows, and fonts. You can also enter custom CSS if needed.
NotifySnack from SnackTools is not a WordPress-specific option, but it can be used on WordPress-powered websites. Both free and paid options are available. Once logged in to their site (you’ll have to create a free account first) you can create your own notification bar very easily. You’ll get options about colors and styles, and they have several pre-made themes that you can choose.
WordPress Noticiation Bar is a free plugin that includes basic features to set up your own notification bar. You can create your own call-to-action message and button, and choose the colors for your bar.
Notification Bar is a similar free plugin with basic functionality. Create your own message, choose from 5 color schemes, and it hides automatically after 7 seconds.
Notification Bar Plugin is available for a one-time purchase of $17. You can create an unlimited number of notification bars, use them on any page or post, use social icons, add custom HTML, and more. Of course, you have full control over details like colors and font size. One cool feature is that you can extend the bar to show a larger amount of text or images.
attentionGrabber is a WordPress plugin that can be purchased for a one-time fee of $12. You can create unlimited notifications, fully customize the appearance of your bars, use multiple fading messages, and more. It includes a click counter for each bar so you know how many visitors are clicking on the links.
Simple Notices Plugin is a free WordPress plugin from Pippin’s Plugins. It allows you to post a simple notification message to your site. A Pro version is available for $8, and it includes features for additional customization.
For more WordPress resources please see:
- Comparison of WordPress Theme Clubs
- 9 Leading Options for Managed WordPress Hosting
- 10 of the Leading WordPress E-Commerce Plugins
- Best Membership Website Plugins for WordPress
- The Best WordPress Theme Builder Options, No Coding Required
Published April 10th, 2013 by Steven Snell