I have tried several and although it seems actually Topstyle (my web editor) is mainly causing things to slow down, I have opted to create a small AutoHotkey script that I have running. Howeve I don't use a shortkey but a phrase: I type ty` and it gets replaced by a longer phrase instantly, that works better for me. I'll enclose it here in case you want to go a similar route.
But on your problem, you should try and pinpoint where the problem lies:
Do any of the example phrases work? if not try creating a new rootnode (you have created all your phrases of the "sample" folder, which has its own settings which might conflict). If the standad phrases work then it's probably a setting that needs changed.
If nothing work you might have another program running with the same shortcut or another program that logs your keys. Hope that helps.