Comments in Moderation

- March 24, 2008

Many companies today are starting blogs to help boost their SEO results. Blogs can be a great tool to introduce new content to the site in an easy to use fashion and without the resources of a web designer or knowledge of html. One great aspect of these blogs is the comments feature that allows users to post comments about your blog post. This is great because the comments are usually about the same topic as the post and can add a lot of good, indexable content to the page other than the main post.

But there is also a darker side of comments, the spam side. Blog comments are an easy way for people to spam links to their site because many people leave the option in WordPress “on” that auto approves comments. I know there have been many times that I had read a comment along the lines of “Great site, keep it up” or “Just surfed in and I love your site”. Sure they seem harmless, but comments allow the user to post his url and name with their comment. So the above two comments were posted by a person named “Buy Viagra Online” and were actually a link to an online pharmacy. This is not good for your site at all. Comments like this can put you into bad link neighborhoods and associate your site with theirs.

The problem is that not all comments are like this. The option to add your url is so other blogs can link back to their blogs. The idea of comments is great and the rewards of building a solid community outweigh the risks of possible spam. But if you are going to allow comments, you need to moderate them all. Check the users post; make sure it is relevant to the topic of your post and not a generic post. Generic posts can be a sign of an automated posting spider trying to spam blogs with open comments. Check the users name and url; you want to allow them to post their url because it is part of blogging but you should always visit the url a user gives to make sure you are ok linking to that site before approving the comment. Comments are one of the best things about blogging but if you are going to enable them make sure you moderate them properly.

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