3 Ways to Get More Blog Comments (and Stop Gagging Your Readers!)

I love commenting on blogs, and if I read a great post I make an effort to leave a comment. But I must admit, sometimes it is flippin' hard to do so!

Encourage your readers to comment - don't gag them
  • Save

Are you Gagging Your Readers from Commenting on your Blog?

Thinking about how easy it is for me to comment on posts has made me rethink my own blog as well as taking notice of some of the things that work – to help me to comment with ease, and to help others to comment on my site too. Here are 3 Ways to help me (and your readers) engage with your blog and increase your comments, traffic and exposure. 

3 Ways to Stop Gagging Your Readers and Get More Blog Comments

  1. Stop Gagging Your Readers. I read an awesome blog post a while back by Scott Stratten (author of Unmarketing) and it has stuck with me ever since. The Post is titled:  The Five Words that Kill Your Blog . At the time of reading it, I was finding myself frustrated at seeing the 5 little words that Scott mentions in his brilliant article:   “Your Comment is Awaiting Moderation” .They were quite often popping up whenever I entered a post comment on blogs!  And as Scott outlines in his article, it stopped me in my tracks. I didn't proceed to add to the conversation started by others with their comments, or share the article – while my own comment was in limbo.  Connection lost. I wanted to see my comment “up there”! While now I can appreciate that “spam filtering” is a consideration, back then I just wanted to share my thoughts and see my comment “stick”.  Now that I am blogging more regularly myself, I have decided that I do not want to moderate my comments.   I want my readers to be free to say what they want, and I welcome constructive conversation and debate.  And don't get me wrong. I check my comments.  If there is a comment that is significantly abusive, offensive or inappropriate, I will consider removing it (haven't had to yet!). But for the most part, I wish to respond to everyone – good, bad and ugly. And as Scott recommends, I simply installed the great little plugin called Akismet on my wordpress site, and I haven't had one spammy comment get through to my posts so far. I'm pretty happy with that.
  2. Ask me a Question or Encourage me to Comment: Don't just leave me hanging at the end of the blog post. Engage me – ask me to contribute, share, be challenged or add my thoughts on something or continue the conversation.  I also love the end of blog comments that ask you to share a link to your site or blogpost – sharing is caring.
  3. Install a User-Friendly Commenting System: Has this been you?  You go to comment on a post and you want to post as yourself but you can't seem to get any of the log in options to work? Frustrated that you can't log in via any of the options provided, you give up and don't comment at all?  Or you are asked to “register” to the site in order to comment, but you just want to dip your toe in and send a comment without committing yet?  This has happened to me many times.  And I can hazard a guess that there may be more of you out there that have given up on a post comment from time to time.  It lead me to wondering if my own blog was easy to comment on… and then I discovered the Disqus Commenting System. For months, I had the following on on my to-do list:  “Set up Disqus Account”. When I finally did get around to setting it up, I wondered why I had never done it before.  The Disqus system allows me to easily comment on other blogs, as I am “logged in” as my profile from any site,  s0 no need to constantly enter email addresses, avatar photos or codes.  It also acts like a mini social media site in itself as it tracks your comments and contributions to other blogs as well as a “like” system all of its own. After a couple of months using Disqus to comment on the blogs of others, I finally installed it on my own blog.  I hope that it helps others to experience the ease of commenting that I do.  I would highly recommend installing a reputable commenting system like Disqus or Comment Luv. Or, if you have a wordpress site, their native commenting system is pretty good too.  If you use Facebook a lot for marketing you could consider the Facebook Comment System. I don't mind, as long as it makes it easier for people to comment.

So that's it.  Try to think about how you can best encourage others to engage in conversation on your site.  Try to find a balance between fighting spam and gagging your genuine, chatty, readers.  Put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself “is it easy to comment on my blog?”

If you have a blog, how do you handle comments? Is there anything you can recommend to a new-ish blogger like me?  What, if anything, deters you from commenting?  What makes it easy and fun for you to comment on another blog?

The following two tabs change content below.

Donna Moritz

Visual Social Media Strategist at Socially Sorted
Donna is a Visual Content Strategist and founder of Socially Sorted, listed by Forbes as a "Top 5 Social Media Blog You Need to Know About in 2019". Donna helps brands leverage the power of visual storytelling and content strategy in their business. Her content has been featured in publications such as Forbes and Entrepreneur Online and she is a contributor to Social Media Examiner. Donna speaks about digital and visual content for the marketing and tourism industries internationally.

You May Also Like

49 Comments

  1. Liz Brinks

    well,i started doing the same thing you just mentioned a couple months ago-i think it really opens the door to letting people post right away, and engage in conversations. i also ahve allowed users to post anonymously for their discretion and if they do not want their real “name” or info on my blog, all is understandable-awesome post!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Great comment Liz! I totally agree, and that is something that i am glad you have mentioned – I too, believe that if someone wants to post anonymously it is fine. I get that some people are dipping their toe in the water or just don’t feel comfortable. Sure I would prefer to know who they are but I am grateful that they took the time to read my article, so I don’t want to scare them off by dictating the terms or method by which they comment. That is what I like about Disqus too – it allows you to log in via Twitter or Facebook if you want, which is usually a no brainer for most people as a fall back. Thanks for the feeddback – much appreciated!

      Reply
  2. Dee Ankary

    I use CommentLuv, and LastPass with a hot-key to fill in name, email and website on the various blogs.  Works a treat.

    I didn’t know Disqus had its own tracking … interesting. Must add it to the backlog of stuff to check out.

    I use Akismet as well, but it’s important to check the spam folder often – many a valuable comment has somehow ended up there.

    Have a great weekend!

    Dee

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Awesome Tip Dee – you are right, it is worth setting it in your diary to check the “caught” comments in spam regularly – it goes both ways. I definitely need to do that more often though. Yes, I find Disqus shows my history when I go to post on other sites. I think it is a great way for blog owners to see who is active in the blogging community too. Comments breed comments! I love that Disqus allows you to log in as Twitter or Facebook accounts too. I have loved using Comment Luv on other people’s sites, especially the opportunity to add your last blog post. Have a great weekend too!

      Reply
  3. Laura Clark

    Great info….that I certainly can use to enhance my site!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks so much Laura – so glad you found it useful! I have already learned a few things by the comments made here so be sure to check through them too! I love it when the comments add more than the post. Have a fabulous weekend!

      Reply
  4. Jaime Lee

    Hi Donna, Thanks for sharing this info about getting blog comments. I wanted to share your article on Google+, but when I click the icon I get an error. Thanks Again for sharing!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks so much Jaime! And thanks for the heads up re Google+. I actually had to make a decision and restarted my Google Accounts so that all of my social media accounts were under the same email. Google plus was on a different email address to the rest of my social media accounts and it was driving me nuts that all my “google” products were not linking through. It is a shame they won’t let you simply change the email address. That would be so much simpler! So I restarted before it got too big. It all syncs better now but I did not realise that the G+ link had not updated on the site. (I have sent my webguy the new link but I didn’t realise he hadn’t changed it so I will let him know). Cheers for that. Thanks for trying lol.

      Reply
  5. Kimberly

    Time is precious and I often read on my phone so having to log in is a deterrent. Having my comment await moderation adds insult to injury. It’s nicer to just have a conversation. Thanks for this post. I hope it inspires some changes.

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi Kimberly – you are so right, it is even harder when you are on an iphone, and as you say, it is about making it as easy for the person to comment as you possibly can! and yes, you are also right in that it should be about having a conversation. Thanks so much for your feedback. PS Imagine if you had someone say “your comment is awaiting moderation” in a real-life conversation. ha ha.

      Reply
  6. Michael Shook

    This is an excellent article and it got me to thinking my own commenting ideas. I use Comment Luv instead of disqus, and I turned off the “Admin must approve comment”  checkbox on my site. I guess I can always turn it back on if I get hammered but, that makes so much sense to be able to see my comment right away. thank you for a great tip.

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      That’s great Michael and yes, you are right you can always turn it back on if you get hammered, but I suspect that you will find you get more hammered with good comments than bad. I hear that Comment Luv is awesome and I thought I could only have one or the other but apparently you can have both, so I will be checking on that. I love their function for allowing readers to add their last blog post. For me it is an instant way of being able to share the love and go and comment on their blogs too! Have a great day!

      Reply
  7. Gwen Tanner

    Great advice.  I think I just might turn off comment moderation – you’re right, I can always delete it and Akismet captures most spam anyway~

    Reply
  8. Isi Dixon

    I guess I’ll also give it a go to turn off moderation. It might just work! Great tips, Donna. 

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Cheers Isi – see how you go with it, but I suspect you will get more comments that way. Thanks for the feedback! Have a great weekend!

      Reply
  9. Valerie Cuell

    Donna

    Many thanks for these useful tips.

    I use CommentLuv and have taken on board what you say about comment moderation and have turned it off.

    I too am not prepared to register on a site just to make a comment.

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi Valerie. Yes, I think the registering thing is something that turns a few people off. I would rather people subscribe to my email updates because they want to and let them comment freely. Good luck with getting more comments. Have a great weekend!

      Reply
  10. unmarketing

    It would be awesome if after I submit this comment it says “This comment is awaiting moderation” 🙂 Thanks for the love and I’m glad we agree!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Ha ha, yes it would be hilarious if it did say that. I have been meaning to write this post for a while Scott. Loved your original post and thanks for the inspiration to set my own blog up the right way. And we definitely agree. To the point that I tell pretty much everyone that is stuck in a marketing rut (ie ice age) to read your book! Have an awesome weekend. PS Love Canada. I spent a year in Edmonton on a Rotary Exchange 1990 (first year Oilers won SC without Gretzky among other interesting stats). Beautiful country. Beautiful people.

      Reply
  11. Robbie Schlosser

    Thanks, Donna,

    Another wonderful post.  I agree on all three points you make.  Three comments: 

    About “moderating”, I’ve been blogging about 5 years now.  I don’t moderate the comments I receive, but I check regularly, and I’ve received maybe 1 spam message a year.  Easily deleted!  How many replies would I have lost if I’d placed obstacles all along the way to commenting? 

    About a commenting system, I’m happily using both Disqus and CommentLuv.  Do they conflict?  Do you recommend just one or the other?  

    How about darkening the text and lightening the purple background in this comment section…

    Have a nice weekend! 
    -Robbie

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks so much Robbie. Wow that is great that you don’t get much spam and your free commenting works well for you. I agree, you would have lost so many replies had you gagged your readers! I think it is funny that we don’t follow the usual rules of conversation on a blog – imagine if you said “your comment is being moderated” to someone in a real-life conversation? ha ha. I love your comment about using both Disqus and Comment Luv – I thought (as did someone I know who is a top blogger) that you could only use one or the other. That is VERY interesting as I want to have my Comment Luv Premium account installed so that I can have the function where commenters/readers can show their last blog post too – a great way to share the love and comment back. So no, I don’t know if they do conflict. You have me very curious now. I might email the owner of CommentLuv and get back to you! And yes I will be changing the comment section so the background colour is more of a contrast – I am actually moving to another word press skin in the next week or so (the Genesis theme) so it will be about a week or so before it changes. Unfortunately that changed when I moved to Disqus – the only downside so far! Cheers and thanks for the feedback. Have a great weekend!

      Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Check the commenting area now Robbie!  My web guy did a great job of fixing it till my new site is up in a week or two!  Have a great day!  

      Reply
  12. jbledsoejr

    I looove Disqus!!! I noticed so many bloggers using it in my pre-blogging days that I knew I wanted it on my blog.  It is so easy to use.

    Have you ever considered the FB comment box?

    Great post btw! 🙂

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hey Jackie – yes that is how I felt about Disqus too when I finally set up my profile and started commenting on other blogs! And yes I have considered the FB Comment box. I think I may start using it on some apps that I will have on my facebook page. I think it is a great way for people to be able to comment, as those that love Facebook like to stay in the Facebook format. I tend to find that Twitter users and bloggers go hand in hand too so they are more likely to want to comment on a blog. It is really about making your content accessible to everyone in the format that they like. But yes, I do love the way the FB comment box works. Very easy to use! Thanks for the feedback – have an awesome weekend!

      Reply
  13. Alana Mautone

    I use Blogger, and I have to admit it does not have a user friendly commenting interface.  I do like Comment Luv and keep saying to myself “I’ll look into it.”  I do have comment moderation on – I’ve had problems with spam (including spammers attempting to post porno links) – and I know it discourages people from commenting- but I feel I need to have that layer of protection and I do not blog for commercial reasons.  The other thing I will comment about is that with my 60ish year old eyes, I found it almost impossible to read the comments alreadyposted on the purple background on my laptop.  I wish you a lot of luck with UBC.

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi Alana – thanks so much for your comment. I think you have to find what you are comfortable with, for commenting and if the spam pains you more than losing the odd comment, then that is a very valid choice. I do like Comment Luv too – it has lots of great features. So sorry about my background colour – you may see I have talked with another commenter about it, but it changed automatically when I upgraded my Disqus (one of the downsides) – my old comment system used to be a lighter background and I have the web developer working on it now as we are moving to a different word press theme anyway. I hope to have it done within the week. Thanks for letting me know and I am on to it! I find it annoying too!

      Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi again Alana – just letting you know – my lovely web guy Brett just fixed up the commenting section so it is much better!  I will have my new website ready to go in the next couple of weeks but I am glad that he could fix this quickly…it was starting to bug me too. Have a great week!  

      Reply
  14. @KrishnaEverson

    Another great post Donna! My pet hates are having to register, join or ‘sign up’ to post a comment, or captcha codes that are impossible to read and get right – especially if it clears my comment after I press the submit button. AAARGH! I love comment luv – both the giving and receiving does it for me! I do moderate my comments however….I haven’t found it detrimental, but perhaps I could rethink that. Thanks for the food for thought!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Cheers Krishna. I totally agree with you (and Scott) re Captcha codes – they drive me nuts! I am going to check out if I can have both Disqus and Comment Luv on at the same time, as I have a subscription to Comment Luv Premium – Iove that you can let readers enter their last blog post. I have had a couple of people say that they moderate the first comment and then comments are cleared after that which is also a good way. I think that would be the way to go for me if spam was ridiculous – so far so good. If only we didn’t have to deal with spam. The world would be a better place (and that goes for the tinned variety too)!

      Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Ha ha thanks Shelley – I hope it helps.  Have a great week! 

      Reply
  15. Laura (aka Marcie Brock)

    OK – you’ve convinced me to TRY to allow the comments without my needing to approve them. My spam filter is pretty good – so chances are it will be fine. I really appreciate this post!

    Laura (aka Marcie Brock – Book Marketing Maven)

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks Laura – I appreciate your feedback.  And re the commenting system, you can only try to switch it off and see what happens.  At least we have moderating as a fall back.  Quite frankly I wish the spambots would self combust!  Have a great week! 

      Reply
  16. Noahs Dad

    I noticed you aren’t using the disqus comment system, but you mentioned you did in your post. Did you change back? If so why?

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Hi Rick – wow talk about perfect timing. Literally a few hours ago I was having some problems with my site and the backend was shutting down and it seems to be due to the last plug in installed which is disqus and my web guy had to remove it to work out what is happening. I love Disqus and I am sure that it will be up soon, but you must have literally arrived at this article just as it went down! There was a major webinar happening in the States that was going to refer to my site today and we needed to have it up. Ahhh technology. So, now we try and fix it because I love Disqus! Thanks for the feedback! I hope it won’t discourage you from using Disqus as my problems with it may be more due to my actual site and something that is broken. Have a great day!

      Reply
  17. Dubbo

    Appreciative site and cool background of this great site..
    Thanks keep on posting..

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks for the feedback! We will keep on posting for sure!

      Reply
  18. moving company edmonton

    Your
    website is super I will have to read it all, thank you for the diversion from
    my studies!

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      ha ha thanks – I hope it doesn’t distract you for too long. And if you are based in Edmonton then a big hello – I lived there for a year on an exchange. Great city, great country!

      Reply
  19. Aabharan

    Hello Donna, I’m glad that I’ve got some very precious and diversified new ideas that will work for my blog promotion. Thanks for your kind share.

    Reply
  20. jacob7394

    Thanks for sharing this article Great job! Appreciated ! .

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      No problems – glad you liked it.

      Reply
  21. Molly Johnson

    Amazing article! its very helpful…thanks

    Reply
    • Donna Moritz

      Thanks Molly glad you liked it ;o)

      Reply
  22. Mary Green

    Its informative article and very impressive.

    Reply
  23. John Stellar

    Nice

    Reply
  24. SchoolWiser

    Well-written article. Keep sharing such articles.
    Thanks

    Reply
  25. Nic Makim

    Thanks for the great tips Donna, so helpful! :))

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap