Rating sites are now becoming very popular. Obviously, I run a web hosting review site and rate different web hosting companies. If you’re running a review site or have a special section that is developed for rating, you need a good WordPress rating system plugin. Maybe, you have heard of GD Star Rating, and it’s sparked your interest. I used it for about two years on tbwhs.com. For the most part, it was an alright plugin.
I was able to find this YouTube video which shows you how to install GD Star Rating. Sorry about the crappy music; you might want to turn your sound off when viewing this video:
GD Star Rating enables the user to choose from 8 different rating types and synchronizes all reviews accurately with comments, pages, and posts. The ratings can be displayed as stars and posted as widgets for the top ratings and statistics. The rating system is highly customizable on the settings panel.
The different types of rating are as follows:
- Article rating based on posts and pages voted by users.
- Article reviews.
- Comments Rating – rating of each visitor’s comment by other visitors.
- Comments review rating – users vote a comment review.
- Multiple rating – can be a mixture of different features and elements.
- Multi rating review – based on reviews and article rating per element.
- Article thumbs rating – based on thumbs up or down (like or not).
- Comment thumbs rating – based on comment ratings by other users.
GD Star Rating plugin also supports cache plugins for a faster loading of data. It also supports the new features in Google called Rich Snippets, a rating system that users can see when searching for a product or service. Widgets can be configured to work with GD Start Rating too to display the average rating of blog posts or comment posts.
A custom GDSR button can automatically integrate and synchronize results in a page with other use, results, in real time. So it means all ratings are displayed as what they are at the current time. One can also use templates for easy layout display of the ratings, as well as custom graphics to change the default stars and icons.
The plugin is also currently available in different languages such as English, Serbian, Spanish, German, Italian, Polish, and much more. One can also integrate the rating system in the RSS feeds for a real time update to your subscribers. IP blocking and data importing/exporting is also a great feature of this plugin. It uses Ajax for dynamic loading, and each IP data is saved whenever a user vote.
As you can see, it’s a rating plugin where you have tons and tons of options. Don’t get me wrong you do have a lot of control with GD Star Rating. However, to make small changes, it does take a lot of work to get the job done. Maybe, you have read how-to articles on it and thought you might want to give it a try. Honestly, don’t bother because there are far better options out there.
I recall about eight months ago when I was having trouble updating some hosting review ratings on tbwhs.com. I couldn’t get it to work correctly and get tired of wasting countless hours redoing all my ratings. I then jumped on the WordPress forums and noticed that people were moaning like crazy. People were asking problems on their forums, and no one was answering their questions. Hence, why I wrote am an article on choosing a good WordPress plugin.
It’s never a good sign when your browsing through the WordPress plugin library and can’t find a plugin that you have on your website. Red flags started to go off with me, and I knew it was time to “can” the plugin. But, you can’t find it. That is what happen to me about six months ago. I had this strange feeling that something was up with GD Star Rating. I knew that if I left it on my site which heavily relies on ratings that I was setting myself up for failure.
I want to the Gdstarrating.com website and saw this message:
I finally, said this plugin just isn’t dependable anymore. It’s very hard to configure, you get no support at all with it, and it takes way to much of my time. I did go to CodeCanyon.net and found “Reviewer” which is an excellent WordPress plugin. It’s simple to use, nd support is excellent.
All I am trying to say is GD Star Rating is a prime example of not relying on one plugin so much for your WordPress site. If that plugin goes out, it breaks your entire site, and you have to find another way to get your site functional again. I will make sure I review some different rating plugins for anyone that is like me and always wants to have some rating plugins on hand for their review based websites. Have you had similar experiences with WordPress plugins? Please leave your comments down below.