A Step-by-Step Guide to Blog Commenting – [SEO Series Part3](Last Updated On: June 19, 2016)
This is the third part of SEO Series, which i started last month. In the first part i discussed different ways on how you can establish your website authority in search engines and in the second part i discussed on different SEO mistakes which you should avoid at all costs. In case if you have missed, you can check the links to them below :
- 8 Ways To Establish Your Website Authority in Search Engines – SEO Series Part 1.
- 8 SEO Mistakes You Should Avoid at All costs – SEO Series Part 2.
Today, I’m going to discuss something different, ‘A step by step guide to Blog commenting’. This article will not only helps you in generating more traffic, helping in SEO but it will also help you in branding, networking and establishing yourself.
So What You Will Learn In This Article?
- Relation of Blog Commenting and SEO
- 3 Elements of Blog Commenting.
- Pros and Cons of Blog Commenting.
- 5 Ways to do Better Blog Commenting that not only helps you with SEO but also with branding yourself.
- A Step-by-Step Guide to Blog Commenting
- Conclusion and Ending!
Most of the bloggers are well aware that the blog commenting is one of the essentials of blogging. Bloggers try to adopt different engagement strategies. They join social media groups to interact, connect on various platforms, join each others’ newsletter, get together on meetups, and hence, they try to involve and build a relationship with each other.
Relation of Blog Commenting and SEO
We all know that Search Engines are now focusing more and more on User experience, branding, integration, generating engagement and building relations with the audience and thats what blog commenting really do because The blog commenting is a process in which readers leave their opinion or feedback to the author’s point of view underneath the article. With the advent of social media, internet marketing, and blogging on the internet, some so-called strategies were also popped up. Back in the days, everyone was serious about blackhat SEO techniques which are quite scary now and the core purpose of blackhat strategies was to rank the sites in any way possible. Bloggers and webmasters used to inject, buy, barter links just to improve their sites ranking which is quite unethical now and search engines give a hard time to those sites these days.
Let’s say, the more we’re progressing, the harder it is becoming to rely on those blackhat strategies.
Now blog commenting is an on-going debate even if the links generated are ‘NO-Follow’ but in my opinion it’s still have a strong SEO value, anyway you will find arguments of either side. There are people who think blog commenting is essential and there is a certain group of people around the globe that think blog commenting spoils time and no longer an efficient way to build relations and improve rankings. They put their arguments based on the facts that people try to misuse the blog commenting system.
A few weeks back, Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner podcast interviewed Brian Clark and Michael Hyatt. They described their way back to the blog comments. Both bloggers and online marketing experts have turned their comments back on. (Episode link)
Therefore, I’ll be discussing the whole concept in details and try to mention the pros and cons of it, so that it becomes easier to understand the process and you become able to judge the blog commenting system.
Before we go deeper into this, there are certain things I would like you to know about blog commenting. You might be thinking to start getting active in blog commenting or you may be interested to know more about it for your blog, if so, then you should not be missing the next part.
3 Elements of Blog Commenting
Blog commenting is an important part of the blogging journey. One can’t get past it without understanding and implement the wrong way. Take a look at three elements of blog commenting that will help you get started efficiently in blog commenting:
1. The Value Attached to a Comment
It means how valuable insights you share in your comment. Of course, it’s a comment, not a blog post that you extend or make it look like an article. But try to give something away in your comment. Whether you add up your opinion or share something help that helps everyone around there. No never know who reads your comment and you might get a new subscriber on your blog or you may end up getting a client from someone else’ blog.
2. The Size of a Comment
Comments like “Great Post” or “Nice Article” never work for anyone. It clearly shows that you just want to leave your link with a comment and nothing else. Sometimes, in fact, it seems you never read that article and just left the comment for the sake of commenting. So, yes, the size does matter in your comment. It doesn’t mean your comment should be based on 1000 words. Make sure it is concise and clear. Don’t go for so long comments, it makes readers boring. Your comment probably seems okay if it is under 150 words (more or less).
3. The Purpose of the Comment
This is extremely important to know. What’s the purpose of your comment? Do you want to add value or something great in the article? Beware, because your comment does show the purpose of its posting, meaning, if you leave a comment just for the sake of commenting, it will reveal it as it might not be according to the context and it may not be making any sense. So, once you read the article and develop an understanding from the author’s standpoint, then comment underneath that article with your assessment. The purpose should be engagement and appreciation. Sometimes, you may disagree with the article, then you should take care of the moral grounds and leave your opinion in the comments section gently.
Pros and Cons of Blog Commenting
It’s quite necessary to discuss the pros and cons of blog commenting. It will help you understand the point of view of either side:
Pros of Blog Commenting
- You will be able to generate more backlinks
- You will be able to generate more traffic from referrals and obviously from search engines.
- Search Engines will give you more authority. (I know it’s debatable but i believe it’s true.)
- You build relations with the fellow bloggers
- Your face gets recognition with blog commenting
- You get a chance to leave your name, url, and opinion on someone else’s blog
- You can meet newer audience on someone else’s blog
- You can use your knowledge and skills to attract the new readers
- The recipient blogger feels privileged when you comment on his/her blog
- It shows that you understood the point and have something to say about it
- It encourages your ideation process when you get used to of responding to others’ content
Cons of Blog Commenting
- It could become fishy if your every comment on everyone’s blog is an admiration.
- If your comment doesn’t sound useful, it appears spam in some cases
- You can’t properly comment on someone’s article without completely reading it
- It takes a lot of time to read the content just to comment
- Commenting itself takes time if you have to comment on two to three blogs every day
So far, we’ve seen that blog commenting is a process of engagement. Once you start misusing it, it becomes really negative and if you use otherwise, it can be healthy not only for your blog’s growth but also for your online brand.
What should be the method to leave a good comment?
How to actually comment on someone else’ blog?
What makes a comment better than the rest?
Looking for the answers?
5 Ways to do Better Blog Commenting that not only helps you with SEO but also with branding yourself.
Here are some ways to improve your blog commenting:
1. Subscribe to Your Favourite Blogs
Subscribing to your favourite blogs is a common thing. People do it all the time, then why is it something that I’m telling you? I meant, subscribe to your favourite blogs to comment on a separate email address dedicated to commenting. On that email address, you don’t receive any other newsletter or blog update from a blog other than the ones you chose to comment on.
Imagine, you have a separate email ID where you receive 10 to 15 blog updates a week and you get a chance of commenting on those blogs on a weekly basis. If you read 10 articles a week, meaning, you can leave 10 comments every week on some industry’s favorite blogs.
The point is, leaving dozens of comments a day isn’t the goal. The quality beats quantity here. Once you start leaving comments on every blog you come across, meaning, you will be leaving comments on every new, old, penalized, or badly written blog out there, and guess what, you’re admiring everyone, that’s not going to work. Just comment on blog posts you read, understand, and have something to add on to.
For instance, if you’re a blogger of blogging niche, you can follow these blogs:
Or If you are into SEO or Digital Marketing, you can follow these blogs :
2. Besides Commenting, Share Article on Social Media as well
Sharing someone else’s article is always beneficial. You get to make a better connection with the author. They feel happy that you shared their content. In fact, if you leave a comment next time, they are likely to pay more attention than the commenters who didn’t share their content.
The ultimate game here is BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS, whether you mention someone’s related article to yours or you share someone else’s content, in either way, you get a chance to get one step closer to the creator.
When you share someone else’s content on social media, your followers find something new. It’s like a restaurant offers a new dish in the menu and regular customers get excited to try it.
There are certain things that a commenter expect in return of a comment:
A) A Reply from the Author: When someone leaves a valuable comment saying nice things about your point of view and written piece, you owe him a reply.
B) Face Recognition: When a commenter spends a few minutes in writing a nice and helpful comment under the great content, that person would be happy to see his name and face over there forever. It might earn him some respect as well as recognition.
C) Personal Brand Positioning: Have you ever seen someone’s comment on your blog? It must have a gravatar, name, and URL attached to it. It’s all because if someone want to leave a valuable piece of insight to someone else’s blog, he would at least demand to put his name, URL, and picture up there. There shouldn’t be any problem in that.
Triberr is the best tool for this purpose. You can connect with other creators and bloggers. You can easily share others’ content through Triberr and obviously you get a chance to visit friends’ blog posts to comment on them.
3. Make Commenting Easy for Readers
Making commenting easier to do means that blog commenting should be made easy for the audience to comment. Sometimes it’s some kind of captcha that becomes irritating to solve or sometimes the blog interface that discourages people from commenting on it.
Copyblogger opens comments on seven days on every article. This is something for the engagement purpose. They might also want to fight the spam. There are, of course, some perks of that, people know that there will be seven days to comment on this article, so they have to do right as soon as possible. If there are no limits on this, people might procrastinate while commenting and keep on delaying it.
But I believe it somehow decreases the ease for the audience. It could be better from a management point of view, but here I’m thinking directly as a reader (customer) as well as a blogger.
Wasn’t it so attractive when CommentLuv brought a new concept of adding your last posted article link on your blog attached to your comment?
4. Fighting the Spam
It’s extremely important to eliminate the spam comments. Without a complete plan in place, you can’t beat spam commenting. In order to get started, you should enable Akismet plugin for spam analysis and control.
Because your comments database keeps on getting full by those spam comments, you might stop looking at the comments which will be disastrous for your blog. In fact, I would recommend WP-Optimize plugin for removing spam comments that get past Akismet filter. It also works on post revisions removal etc.
Did you know when Copyblogger opened the comment, they came with a stronger plan to combat the spam?
And, the seven days commenting period for each other blog post is part of that combat plan.
5. Reward the Commenters
If you want to go one step further with your blog commenting system, you can use some of the coolest tools available in WordPress plugins repository. Comments Leaderboard, for example, it highlights the commenters with most comments and kind of starts a competition between the commenters to rank higher than others. This plugin displays top commenters on the leaderboard.
Similarly, Gratisfaction is another option for rewarding commenters on your blog. It comes with a full-fledged rewarding system for visitors, commenters, and viewers.
These strategies aren’t must-do for each and every blog, but yes, they might be a possibility.
Every strategy doesn’t work for every blog.
It’s up to you to decide what works for you and what doesn’t. Now move on to the main thing!
A Step-by-Step Guide to Blog Commenting
Here are key steps to get started with blog commenting:
Step #1: Read the Blog Post Before Commenting
In order to do a comment that sounds good, you need to read the blog post you’re commenting on. Without reading it, you won’t know the essence of that post and especially what the writer wants to say. Some of the newbie bloggers are busy in this practice, they just come up, open the article, and leave a brief comment admiring the post. Their purpose seems very clear. Probloggers consider it as a spam. You don’t want to be in the spammers list. So, make sure that you read out the whole blog post before leaving your comment. The benefit of reading the blog post would essentially be good because you would clearly know what author wanted to say and then you’ll be in a better position to respond to it. Less Dossey talked about this a few years back in this Google+ post. Now this will make sense. It legitimized my point.
Step #2: Try Giving Whatever is Missing
One of the benefits of reading the whole post before commenting on it is that you can add up something that is missing in the context of that post. Like i believe your comment should have some value on it, so what’s the value your comment is going to give? Does it going to add any value in the existing article? It is always considered an utter valuable thing to do when you agree to the author and add up something that adds value to the whole article. Readers love it and the author does the same. If you are from South Asian bloggers community on the internet, you probably know Harleena Singh. She is famous for emphasizing on her comments. You’ll always find her comments detailed and in-depth. It is something newbie bloggers should learn and follow. Her comments seem that she has read the post and want to leave her heartfelt views on it and that helps her not only in branding herself but in terms of SEO as well.
Step #3: Make Things Clearer, Not Fizzy
One of the problems you might see in the commenting section of your blog or others’ blogs is that some people arrive, they read your content, like it, and while leaving their comments, they either don’t pick the narrative of the article or they don’t have something amazing to add on to it, so they end up leaving some unclear comment which makes author confused too. Sometimes, bloggers don’t respond to the comments they don’t understand that what the commenter wanted to say to them. So, always try to come up with a simple message and always try to explain your point in simple words. You know your message that you want to leave there, so just you and give it away with proper focus. No mixed thoughts, no double opinions on things.
Step #4: Develop a Social Connection
It’s your reply that makes people feel confident and happy with your content. You need to develop a social connection with your readers and that will never happen by bashing on the commenters. Instead, try to guide them through your replies. Charlene Kingston wrote an amazing blog post about managing your comments on your blog. Not only will it help in increasing your readers’ engagement, but it will also help you build a connection with your audience. When it comes to commenting and social connection, Disqus is quite a popular tool that major blogs use today for their main commenting system in WordPress sites. It provides you a chance to start building your profiles, fan following, and groups right on the same platform. Once you log in through your Disqus account, you can comment on any blog using Disqus commenting system.
Step #5: Leave with a Promise
It’s the strategy that extends your relation with the audience or even with the blog commenter. It means when you’re ending your commenting, you say something that sounds CONNECTING. Your last two or so lines could be for building a bond with the author.
If you’re a commenter, you can just say that “I really enjoyed your blog post and I’m looking forward to reading your next one” or you can say “I thoroughly enjoyed your piece and I’m definitely coming back soon to taste something new here”… Such statements leave a mark in the writer’s mind that he does like it and may come back. In fact, he may end up remembering your name or face. These things are tiny if you observe but they certainly leave a bigger impact than their size and yes they somehow motivate the writers too to keep on improving their writing quality.
As you read the blog post, you were in the good position to comment on that. As I said before, don’t ever comment without reading the blog post. It doesn’t make any sense. Even MOZ tells the same thing in this article in detail that commenting without reading the article could be really bad for your image because you don’t have an idea that what’s tune of the post and what’s expectation of the audience. In fact, that MOZ article goes on hard on that and rather suggest to take your time to understand the community around that blog before commenting.
Try to come with a positive comment or at least appreciate the effort if you something to disagree.
Whatever it is, just clearly make your point. Clarity is important here.
The chances are, most of the commenters will be admiring the author’s effort.
If you’re not, you may be neglected by the others (and may be by the author too)…
So, whatever you point of view is, you never mix things up, come with a clear conclusion.
Give something straight that everyone understands it.
You can even tell that you’re going to follow you (the author) on social media. (It will give him/her a feeling of appreciation)
Once you’re near closer, then add up a promise that you can keep. You can say that you’ll visit back.
Tell them that you’re going to subscribe to their blog.
It all helps.
The commenting doesn’t mean the ideal way of building backlinks now. You should be checking other SEO hacks for that. Consider blog commenting as a way of communication which can trigger solid social connections with many other fellow bloggers as well as potential customers.
What else would you say to add something to this guide on blog commenting?
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