I often see bloggers asking this question to other blog owners – How can I increase comments on my blog posts? How can I add discussion (and thus add life) to my blog entries? I’m sure you might also have seen such questions on blogging forums and elsewhere. Comments are so important for a blog’s success because they act as metrics to indicate the amount of feedback it gets from its readers. Blog comments are also considered as major blogging milestones.
I realize that there is probably no “magic bullet” and no “one-size-fits-all” kind of answer to such questions. But still, I think we can list out few things that can really boost up comments on a blog post.
1. Content is (still) the King:
Even if it has been mentioned million times, still the fact remains. That Content is (still) the King. Produce some unique (not necessarily original), quality content and you are bound to get some reader feedback. Don’t be a Copy Cat, write unique, useful content that others would find interesting to read. Give them some food for thought and in return you would get some quality comments. It is as simple and as difficult as that!
2. Leave appropriate, useful comments on other related Blogs:
If you are already famous like Darren Rowse from ProBlogger.net then you might not need this method to earn comments on your blog posts. But since you are not (and that is probably the reason why you are reading this blog entry ;)) I would suggest you to read on…
The best way for a new blogger to start out is to leave meaningful comments on other related blogs. Fortunately for you, 99.9% of blogs have a field in the comments area where you link to your website. You might wonder how is this going to help you attract readers that comment? The thing is, if you leave them a reply to their post pointing out some tips or useful info towards that post they will most likely respond to your comment by visiting your blog entry. You don’t always have to point out some tips or info, you can debate about the subject, point out mistakes or your thoughts on the subject and so on. There are so many ways you can attract their attention but, what I am trying to say is don’t just leave a comment on a post and expect people to check out your site if you haven’t left any useful information.
3. Ensure easy comment options:
I think this is self-explanatory. Does your blog require a login to comment? Then don’t expect me to leave behind a comment. Come on it’s a busy world and registration is a hurdle, which readers like me will be unwilling to deal with. Yes, it sure does combat spam messages but asking your readers to login in order to be able to leave a comment is over-kill, in my opinion. Same applies for blogs that ask their readers to fill in captcha (image verification) even if they already have comment moderation turned ON! So try to keep your comments section simple and easy to use if you don’t want to stop your genuine readers from leaving behind comments.
4. End a blog post with a question(s):
Include specific questions in your blog posts and you are guaranteed to get higher number of quality on-topic comments. Make sure that you ask interesting questions that really attract the attention of the reader and make him/her want to leave a comment on your post. There is nothing like the feeling of “my opinion matters”. Give the same feeling to your readers and tempt them to voice out their opinion. You would be surprised with the result!
5. Be Controversial (at times):
Being controversial isn’t always a bad thing, especially if you are a blogger. So be controversial once in a while. Write posts like “The DEATH of Twitter #FollowFriday” or “30 Surefire Ways to Lose Followers and Irritate Friends on Twitter” and you are bound to generate some buzz among your readers (in a positive way).
6. Reward your Commentators:
One very easy way to get commentators to leave comments on your post is by rewarding them. Incentives can do wonders for you. There are many ways one can reward their commentators though. Here are few incentives that you can earn if you are leaving a comment here on TechChunks.com:
a. Commentluv Plugin:
Commentluv is a relatively not-so-new concept where commentators can add a link to one of the recent blog posts. The advantage of commentluv is that it can become a good traffic source for commentators. And thus, it helps bloggers who use commentluv get more comments than bloggers who don’t. Seeing the increase in comments after we installed this plugin on TechChunks.com, we can tell for sure that this certainly works!
b. Top Commentators Plugin (Dofollow):
Bloggers are always looking for ways to increase backlinks so that they get a higher search engine ranking and Page Rank. Keeping this in mind you can activate the “Top Commentators Plugin” on your blog (just like we have it on the sidebar). This is a great way to give your commentators a sense of recognition and also a site-wide DoFollow link to their own blogs as a reward in return for their time.
c. Commenting Contests
This is one of the easiest ways. Just start a commenting contest. Award the the top or the best commentators with prizes such as cash or vouchers. It is a super easy method to increase comments. Though this is something we are yet to experiment here on TechChunks.com, still the $1000 Contest that we are running right now turned out to be a comment train! So contests and comments seem to go hand in hand, as it appears.
7. Interact with comments on your blog:
If someone leaves a comment on your blog, ensure that you interact with them. You need not reply a simple generic comment and it is understandable that this could get harder as your blog grows but try to devote some time during the day to show your readers that their comments are valued. Over time, you will notice that loyal visitors will answer questions and create a community too!
– Allow readers to edit their own comments.
– Check and delete spam comments regularly. This is essential to maintain a healthy comment-base.
– Don’t use captchas for comment forms. Comment moderation is enough, in most cases.
– Try to be considerate while moderating comments. e.g. here at TechChunks.com we nolonger moderate your comments if you have 2 comments that are already moderated in the past.
– Try not to force registration for comments. Until you are really BIG, stay away from asking your readers to login in order to leave comments.
– Try to end a blog post with a “Call to Action” message.
What is your comment generation technique? How have you increased the levels of comments on your blog? Let us hear by commenting (had to ask) 😉