The Pros: Pleasant user interface, good recommendation results
The Cons:A�Monthly fees for websites with >10.000 page views/month
Publishers site: www.contextly.com
Contextly is actually a very interesting related posts plugin developed by a startup going by the same name. Founded by Ryan Singel, a former WIRED editor, it comes with Singel’sA�editorial background. In fact, SingelA�said he simply could not take all the bad content recommendations and poorly disguised native ads anymore. He actually has a quite impressive (and funny) video on how bad the so called recommendations of some other plugins are (unfortunately, we can’t find it anymore. Give usA�a shout if you know a YouTube link)
So, Contextly set out to go back to the roots of a related posts plugin: show related content. No native ads, no fuss. You can imagine Contextly in the opposite corner of Outbrain and Taboola.
And just like Zemanta’s WordPress Related Posts, it offers the option to manually change the recommended content that was selected by the algorithm on a per article basis. This is not just a detail but a major advantage over other related posts plugins. Want an example? Well, say you have a couple of really well performing blog posts. The algorithm suggests some good recommended posts. Yet, with those well performing posts it might actually make sense to hand-select the recommended posts yourself. The likelihood that you beat the algorithm and select better content manually is pretty high. In the end, Contextly offers a nice balance: automated recommendation for the majority of your articles with the option to do the groundwork yourself for your top performers.
There is another thing that makes Contextly stand out from the rest: it’s only free for up to 10,000 page views per month. That is enough for the average personal blog. Anything beyond costs between $9 (25,000 page views) and $99 (250,000 page views) per month. The pricing appears steep, but perhaps the saying “you get what you pay for” applies.
In the end, it’s a classic cost/benefit decision: Contextly is a very nice related plugin tool, no question. Whether it’s worth the money you’ll probably find out best byA�trying it.