Medium has made publishing easy and beautiful. And now it’s trying to make it more powerful!
Among number of updates, Medium has now launched a publishing API to make it easier to share and publish from other content platforms. The update also includes integration with WordPress, and Medium has taken it a step further by releasing a plugin especially to syndicate content with WordPress.
Table of Contents
- Integrating WordPress with Medium
- Medium Plugin for WordPress
- More Ways to Connect WordPress and Medium
- Impact on SEO
Integrating WordPress with Medium
WordPress is indeed one of the major publishing platforms that powers more than 25% of the web. And Medium is quickly changing the way we create and consume content. WordPress integration with Medium thus can be mutually beneficial to both the platforms.
Further, I think, Medium’s integration can be interesting to WordPress publishers mainly for two reasons.
i. Medium’s outreach to a wider community
Medium’s value doesn’t just lie in the beautiful editor or its front-end posting capabilities. The platform is a network to connect and share ideas. WordPress bloggers/publishers can reach a wider audience with their work and build on the Medium’s community.
(I think this is also something that WordPress.com is also trying achieve with the wider WordPress community. It’s trying to integrate the network feature of WordPress.com with the wide-ranging self-hosted WordPress publishers. Plugins such as Jetpack that help integrate WordPress.com network features are steps in that direction. But that’s another long story).
Besides, Medium recommends other stories published on the website and thus publishers can benefit from getting their posts discovered from similar posts on Medium.
ii. Interaction and Collaboration with Medium Readers
Medium takes pride in being a community of readers. And as with any community, WordPress publishers in addition to embarking on that reader’s circle can find further possibilities of interaction and collaboration.
Medium allows anyone to start a Publication, which basically enables you to publish and collaborate with writers and editors on a certain topic (Think it as creating a new blog on Medium).
So now that medium has made it easier to integrate with WordPress, let’s look into few ways that you can syndicate your WordPress posts with Medium.
Medium Plugin for WordPress
Medium has published an official WordPress plugin that makes it easy to cross-post posts between WordPress and Medium.
I will go through installing the Medium for WordPress plugin and setting it up to syndicate posts from your WordPress blog.
Follow along if you want to post your WordPress blogs directly on Medium. I will first go through the steps of installing the plugin and then the features of this plugin.
Downloading and Installing the Plugin
Update: Medium has made its plugin available on the official repository. See the plugin description below.
The plugin isn’t available on the WordPress plugin repository yet. The Medium team might have chosen to publish it exclusively on GitHub, or it will appear on the official repository soon after it gets approved (in case they have submitted it to the official repository).
Download Medium Plugin from Official Repository
Medium has published its official plugin on the WordPress repository and so you can install it directly by searching it from your WordPress Dashboard.
- To install it from within your WordPress dashboard, Go to Plugins > Add New and search for Medium.
Download Medium Plugin from GitHub
As the plugin is now available from the official repository, the GitHub repository is used only for development purposes. You should download and install using above option for a stable version.
- Upload the plugin by navigating to Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin
- Activate the plugin
The plugin hasn’t made it easy to find its settings and configuration page. You will need to navigate to your profile (Users > Your Profile) for integration settings (see image below).
Authenticating with Medium’s Integration Token
Once you have installed and activated the plugin, you will need to authenticate with Medium.
Medium has made it seemingly easier to integrate using integration tokens. Adding tokens instead of using ID and Password is a smart idea as this allows multi-author WordPress blogs to connect to their individual medium accounts.
- First, Sign in to your Medium account and navigate to the Settings page from your profile icon. Towards the end of the page, you should see a box to generate integration tokens.
- Enter the description for the token (something that will help you remember what you're using it for) and click on “Get integration token“. Copy the token – you will need to enter it in next step.
Please note: Integrations tokens grant permission to publish to your account, and so you need to keep them secret.
- Copy the code and enter it in the plugin’s settings by navigating to your profile in WordPress (Users > Your Profile).
- Click Update Profile to save the settings. Continue reading to understand more settings options.
Medium Plugin Settings
As you can see in the settings page, there are few more settings that you can define on the page. You can read more about the settings options on the page itself, but here are my quick suggestions.
Default crosspost status: You can choose to keep this Draft or Published. I recommend setting it as Draft so that you can always final check for fine details to see everything has been imported as desired before publishing it in Medium.
Default crosspost license: This will set your licence for each post that appears below each post in Medium.
You might want to research own your own to know more about what these licences actually mean. I recommend using the license such as CC 4.0 BY-NC-ND that licences anyone to use your work for non-commercial purposes with credit.
Default cross-link status: This is a really useful feature that helps you cross-link on both platforms.
If set to Yes, you will have a link within your WordPress post saying the post was published on Medium and a similar link back on the Medium to your original WordPress post.
Publishing with Medium Plugin
Now that you have the plugin installed and setup correctly, you can control the settings for each post individually while you add any new post in your WordPress editor. You should see a Medium Card with options (as seen in the image below) for each individual post.
More Ways to Connect WordPress and Medium
Medium has also added support for few other platforms that make it easy to integrate further with WordPress in different ways. Let's look into IFTTT which has been a popular way to integrate different platforms.
IFTTT – Publish WordPress Posts to Medium
WordPress has been long supported by IFTTT and now Medium has also added support for the IFTTT platform. This means you can now easily integrate Medium with both hosted WordPress blogs and WordPress.com blogs using IFTTT.
- WordPress.com users that want to integrate WordPress with Medium can also benefit from using this integration with IFTTT.
Steps to configure Medium with WordPress
- You will need to sign up for an IFTTT account if you haven’t got one (It’s Free!).
- Connect both WordPress and Medium channels in your IFTTT account and publish your recipe. You will need to configure the action fields for Medium once you have connected the channel.
After you define the Content Format as HTML, you will need to fill in the Content box with HTML markup. Here's the template that you can use in the Content Box.
WordPress to Medium IFTTT Recipe
I have also published the recipe to help you quickly add and configure the above settings on IFTTT. Just add this recipe link for Creating a Medium story from your WordPress post.
Support for IFTTT also opens up Medium for other blogs and platforms including Tumblr, Blogger, and Twitter.
Impact on SEO
Cross posting your blog posts on Medium shouldn't impact the SEO of your website in a negative way.
When you publish the same content to other platforms or blogs, you should set the duplicate copy as canonical links to your original content on your website.
Using the Medium plugin for WordPress to cross post your content automatically adds a canonical link to your original blog post.
Medium's help article on duplicate content and SEO states that “Medium’s official tools for cross-posting (including the Migration tool, Import tool, WordPress plugin, and IFTTT) add the source it is importing from as the canonical link automatically.”
To sum up the benefits, the community and social network built around the Medium platform can be definitely useful in getting your posts seen by a wider audience. As publishers, we are always concerned about growing our audience, and Medium can prove to be an excellent medium for many of us.
Besides, Interaction and collaboration with the Medium’s community can only be possible by sharing the blogs on the platform.
Hopefully, this can also inspire you to publish more if your posts get increased exposure and successful on the Medium’s powerful network.
What do you think of this WordPress and Medium integration? Are you using it for any of your blogs?