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Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For WordPress Blogs : Very Cool!

Yahoo worked on this Plugin with the help of WordPress, and being a lifelong WordPress user (SEJ first started on Blogger, then switched to b2; which became WordPress) I thought it my duty to not only report on the Plugin itself (with the help of SEJ’s Search News Anchor Julie Kent), but also test and use what I feel is one of the most efficient and useful WordPress Plugins – especially for a third party branded plugin and its Flickr images tool.

Another note is that although the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin is branded by Yahoo and serves content from Yahoo properties like Flickr, the plugin does not serve Yahoo advertisements and is not against the Google AdSense Terms of Service, for those bloggers who run Google AdSense.

If your WordPress.org powered blog is hosted on your own server or domain, you’ll have to download and install the plugin. The plugin is not yet available for blogs hosted on WordPress.com.

After installing the WordPress Plugin, activating it and then opening a new entry to write a post, the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin box appears on the right side of my WordPress admin area, but without any matching Shortcuts since this entry is empty.

 Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

Then, the initial draft of this post is typed, and Yahoo then automatically identifies 14 different Shortcuts which can be entered into the post.

 Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

I then select the option to add these Shortcuts and preview them. Since this is a post for reviewing the new Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin, I now will ‘Convert all links to badges’. (The blogger can however pick and choose which Shortcuts they want to include or delete. A lot of the shortcuts are to Yahoo Search results and not all to embedded maps or graphs, so if the blogger does not want all of these links to Yahoo Search results, they should look into whether or not they want to include them.

YahooPlugin3 Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

In this case, the Flickr part of the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin did not serve any related images, but if I do a search in the Flickr search box on the bottom of the preview page, images are then served and I’m given the option to add them to my blog. Let’s try this by doing a search for ‘ayers rock’ :

 Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

Multiple images are served which I can now sift through then add to the blog post in one click. I can also select the different sizes of the photos. By using this plugin, the blogger can be 100% positive that all photos are attributed to their source under Creative Commons licensing.

 Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

You’ll see that the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin is a real time savor and value added addition to blogging, especially the maps for local oriented blogs and the Flickr photos for almost any blogger. Below is our original announcement on the new plugin, using tools from the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin itself (just mouse over the words with dotted lines). Enjoy!

Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin for WordPress

The official Yahoo Search Blog announced today the availability of a new plug-in for WordPress blogs called Yahoo! Shortcuts for WordPress, which automatically finds and offers supporting content to help bolster your blog posts in real-time. With the Shortcuts plug-in, Yahoo expects that bloggers will experience less of a burden in finding additional content to integrate into posts, and will therefore have more time to spend worrying about the actual writing. It adds a depth to your posts that you may not have had time to worry about before.

Once you’ve downloaded and installed the Shortcuts plug-in, as you begin to type, it will start to find terms in your post, such as company names, tickers, locations, news, and product names, and with no work on your part, and will integrate a roll-over or preview badge into the post. For example, if we were to integrate here at SEJ, it might show a dynamic finance chart for Google‘s stock performance (Ticker symbol: GOOG), a map for the term “San Francisco“, and so on. Less appealing, at least to me, is the ability of the plug-in to link to various products, based on keywords within a post. If I were to link to products, I’d want to make sure I did it with an affiliate link, otherwise, isn’t it just giving away free advertising for the retailer?

Another cool feature for Flickr addicts, is the plug-in’s capability of recommending Flickr images based on key themes in your blog post. This is being made possible through Creative Commons licensing, and would include proper attribution to the picture’s original author.

At this time, “shortcuts” available with in the plug-in include: Flickr Photos, maps, financial information, products, autos, news, and web search. The plug-in’s official website also promises ” More shortcuts coming soon!”

The best part about this plug-in is the level of control it offers bloggers. You can accept or reject any and all shortcut suggestions that it comes up with. If you have an issue with linking to products, then you can reject the products. If you want to include a suggested financial chart, but not a suggested map, you can do that too. Furthermore, you can also decide how you want the shortcut to be displayed, selecting either a simple link or badge.

As an added incentive to get bloggers to adopt this new plug-in, the first 500 bloggers to get it set up on their blog will snag a cool “Pimp My Blogt-shirt.

So, how does it work? Simply download the Yahoo! Shortcuts plug-in and as your typing it will begin to find terms in your post such as company names and tickers, locations, news and product names — and, with no additional effort, integrates a roll-over or preview badge into your post. For example,

Crater Lake” brings up a map of Crater Lake to answer the “where the heck is that” question and ” Citigroup” calls up a dynamic finance chart of the company’s stock performance. The product Shortcut (e.g. Nintendo Wii) displays the latest product reviews and price comparisons from retailers across the web via Yahoo! Shopping .

And, because a picture is worth a thousand words we didn’t stop there. While these days it is popular to release new features every half hour or so, we decided to hold the product and dive deeper to offer images, as well. Now, under Creative Commons licensing, we’ll recommend Flickr images based on the key themes of your post, with proper attribution to the original author of the picture included.

Screen Shot 2014 04 15 at 7.21.12 AM Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!
Loren Baker is the Founder of SEJ, an Advisor at Alpha Brand Media and runs Foundation Digital, a digital marketing strategy & development agency.
Screen Shot 2014 04 15 at 7.21.12 AM Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For Wordpress Blogs : Very Cool!

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13 thoughts on “Yahoo Launches Shortcuts Plugin For WordPress Blogs : Very Cool!

  1. Loren,
    Thanks for the thorough review.

    In the case above where no flickr images appear automatically — this is a bug that we’ll fix. It happens in some cases when you copy and paste the text into the authoring environment. However, if you type directly into the WordPress editing tool this does not happen.

    Cheers,

    -Ariel Seidman
    Yahoo! Search

  2. I never had a blog but now I’ll start one. Why only for the WordPress? I wish it works even on websites and with much lot of customization

  3. By the way, if you are installing and testing the Yahoo Shortcuts Plugin on your WordPress blog, and run into any issues or have any ideas for addons, please feel free to share them in this comment thread.

  4. al:
    We will push to additional blogging platforms — stay tuned.
    Cheers,
    -Ariel Seidman
    Yahoo! Search

  5. Loren,
    Thanks for pointing this one out.

    Basically it works like charm, but it leaves a nasty line filled with plugin coding on top of the excerpts of my index file for the posts I used this plugin for.

    I couldn’t get it deleted, so I de-activated right now. Looking for a solution.

    Thanks anyway.

  6. I’m in the boat with Case on this one.

    Love the plug-in but it’s that nasty line of raw (shortcut) html code, exposed during a search of the my blog that is just too much to share with my clients.

    Plug-in deactivated until further notice.

    Damn, I love this plug though and puuuurfect for hassle free maps.

    P.S. Can you extend the t-shirt offer to a global address rather than US only?

    It isn’t just US that blogs!

    Meow.

  7. Ariel,

    This comment came back from my server admin

    [snip] I think what is happening is the render isn’t firing for the search. It effects all browsers. One thing to try might be to embed the plugin further down the post. Did you notice it happens on any of the category and archive functions… I might take it out until a fix is posted as it doesn’t look good. I’ve tried to find some other info on it but I can’t find a wordpress site using it. Just to see if it fails there. There isn’t even an option to configure the rending of html tags in a post.[snip]

    HTH

  8. I like this plugin but it leaves some nasty code when i access my archive files.Told yahoo about the problem but in the meantime will have to deactivate the plugin.