Whenever I build or update a client’s WordPress site, a question often arises about the blog comment form. Although WordPress is used mostly as a content management system for business websites, its roots are in blogging. All WP sites have a blog built-in – and with that blog comes with the capacity for visitors to post comments to your blog posts.
So, are blog comments necessary? The short answer is no. There are some WP users that are blogging for traffic and visibility and for them, visitor comments can help build community and serve as a SEO and traffic booster. But for most website owners, they’re unnecessary and can create messaging confusion. Here’s my three top reasons to simply disable comments:
1. Comment forms can confuse visitors. Very often a prospect will read your blog post and try to send a message – not a response to your post’s content, but a general inquiry that is better sent via your contact form. Many, if not most site visitors will confuse the two forms. If the site owner is not actively monitoring blog comments, they can miss inquiries. I’ve also seen messages like “please call me at 555-444-6666 asap about my problem you can help with..” – type message be approved accidentally. The owner doesn’t notice it, and the contacts message is publicly visible on the website – not the best way to impress a prospect!
2. You need big traffic to create meaningful discussion. This is worthwhile if blogging is the focus of your business, but that’s rarely the case. Blogging is usually a content marketing technique, not something that is the core of what you do.
3. Comment forms can be assaulted by bots and spam. This is especially true if your site is not actively maintained. Comment spam, over time, build up and can become a security liability. Comment spam can also drown out legitimate messages that you can overlook in the process of cleaning out spam messages.
The bottom line is that except in certain cases, blog comments should be disabled on your site. Instead, you can use the space beneath the blog post to promote a service or have a email opt-in form.