Here’s my Author hReview plugin review.
And why is it important to you? Keep reading
It always caught my attention, those little yellow stars that appear in the Google results standing out one result from another.
Those stars are the famous Google review rich snippets, which can bring higher click-through rates. And, how can you add them to the searches making more relevant results to the user?
Author hReview plugin is the solution. I’ve been using it practically from its genesis, the lite version, developed by Hesham Zebdia of FamousBloggers.
Originally, the plugin was for Thesis Theme, but finally Hesham rolled out for any WP theme. As I was using Headway Themes, I started to explore with those shiny little stars on my other blog, a social food blog.
Publishing honest reviews and try to rank them on the first Google results is ideal, and with this plugin the technical job to add the stars is very easy.
Caveat: Plugins can be installed only WordPress.org self hosted. WordPress.com doesn’t allow installing plugins.
This installation is like any other plugin in your WordPress site. Upload the zip file, activate and enter the API key for the total activation of the plugin.
You’ve 4 tabs to expand the complete information and the ratings.
I’ve made this presentation to make a graphical description of the Author hReview plugin, enjoy it:
Today there are two versions, the lite-free version with limited functions and the Pro version.
If you want to test the waters you can try the simpler version of the plugin, you can find it here.
Really, if your intention is to catch up the attention of the user and to have a full package ready to show your review, you’d consider the Author hReview Pro (aff).
Here are some of the Author hReview Plugin Pro advantages:
- Half ratings: sometimes product reviews need these half stars
- Change the button text: now, you can use your imagination for this button “more info”, “get it here” and so forth
- Reviews on post AND pages: free-lite is only for posts
- Add images to the rating box
- Different rating box templates
- One page at WP dashboard with all your reviews, very handy
- Complete control of the elements of the review box
- Add shortcode to display rating boxes anywhere in the posts/pages
- Sort reviews in widgets by rating value (example: Top Rated)
- Possibility of removing rel=”nofollow” link
- Add shortcode to display related reviews
Of course, there is full documentation of its working at the Author hReview site.
I can’t mention any drawback with the plugin because, truly, I don’t find it.
Related to support, my experience was that I had a little problem one day when I installed, with an unknown message appearing on my blog after activated the plugin. After contacting to Hesham, he resolved quickly the same; this is priceless
I wish all the supports to be like the aforementioned; as you know every developer has a certain time-frame to respond, and in certain cases the responses never come.
If it’s a free plugin you know that perhaps, you’ll not have any answer in a forum-support (I don’t blame for that) but with premium plugins, the situation must be different and you must receive an answer plus, if it is possible, a fix to your problem.
Update August 1st, 2013:
Speaking about the Author hReview Pro you’ve two licenses:
Single site: $69 – one payment
Multi site: $139 – one payment
Today and in all cases you get the WP Reviews plugin, more the Author hReview, more the WP Customer Testimonials plugin.
The updates and support in the Pro version come with a validity of 6 months. After that period, you’d renew it but for $29.
This point is up to you; if you consider that the plugin is working OK, perhaps you don’t need to extend the support and eventual updates. This is very common with premium plugins and also with premium themes, which you need to renew them, if you consider it necessary.
There is a little difference between Single vs Multi: e.g. support for posts & pages is valid only for Multisite.
If you’ve several blogs with reviews, the Multi site option should be the best even having 1 blog, because if you want some more functions, Multi site can be the option. Again, your budget and your necessities can vary a lot according to your goals for your site.
Are you using Google review rich snippets? Have you installed the Author hReview plugin lite-free or Pro version on your blog?