The Makings of a Spam Comment : How Do You Deal with Them?
You spent hours upon hours conceptualizing about a post, actually writing it and making sure people will be interested. Once it was published, you promote it on your social accounts and patiently waited for the traffic to kick in, along with insightful comments you were expecting to get from readers. When you checked your email, you got a notification that someone already posted a comment on your blog. You hurriedly check and you see a comment awaiting your approval that looks something like this:
It may look like one innocent comment to you. The comment poster diligently made sure his / her comment was related to your post. It has a link to some site that’s also related to the topic of your post. You check it and it seemed decent. Is this a spam comment? And should you approve it or not?
To answer the first question, YES, that’s a spam comment. But, don’t get me wrong. Not all comments with links should be considered spam. There are legit ones left by people who just want to share more information about the topic of your post. So how can you tell it’s a spam comment? What other comments are considered spam and what should you do about them? Read on.
I remember receiving a comment on my blog post about our pet dog who passed away. I thought it was an innocent comment, ’til I checked the website the name of the poster was leading to – it was about funeral arrangements. I also remember thinking to myself if I should let it publish since the poster seemed to have read my post. Whoever left that comment deserves an Oscar, seriously. 😀 Besides, that blog of mine isn’t giving out do-follow links to comment posters.
What did I end up doing to that comment? I kept it and eventually approved it for posting. Now, before I go on explaining why, let me break down a few things that I’ve learned while reading about SEO:
- The more active your blog is, the more successful it’ll be, most especially with search engines.
- One way to keep your blog active is constantly publishing updates, at least twice to three times a week.
- Another way to keep your blog active is having or maintaining an active exchange or interaction with readers. That is through comments.
I know this may be considered a sin for most bloggers to allow spam comments to be published on your blog, but hear me out. I do not approve all spam comments. I usually delete those that fall under the following categories:
- Annoying comment #1: Comments that say “Thank you for this great article.”, “This article is very informative”, “I’ll bookmark this post for future reference”, “Good job with this article”, and others like it are SPAM. I know, some people think it’s legit and actually accept it and even respond to them (after patting their backs probably… just kidding! 😀 ). From what I know, these are actually left by spam bots to multiple blogs or sites so I immediately delete them, no matter how flattering their message could be.
- Annoying comment #2: Comments that are completely unrelated to what my blog post is about. I used to get a ton of comments like this one, but lately, it seems like more human spammers are doing the spamming.
- Annoying comment #3: Those who leave one-liner comments and then drop links to websites like I’m stupid enough to let that in. I mean, c’mon. If you’re going to spam, exert some effort. 😀
- Annoying comment #4: Comments that are well-written, but with links to a website smartly inserted into the text through HTML code OR left as a link to their names. Why are they annoying? Because you’re torn between keeping them and deleting.
If you have any other annoying comment ideas, share them at the comments section. 🙂
How to Deal with Spam Comments
I am using Disqus commenting system on almost al of my blogs (except this one). It uses Akismet to prevent spam so filtering is most effective.
For comments that fall under annoying comment #1, 2 and 3, I delete them right away. For comment #4, I actually keep them for future use. Since I’m using Disqus as my commenting system on most of my blogs (except this one), I’m able to delete links they post within the comment. But, those links on their names, I can’t change. I hope there’ll be a way for me to change this too on Disqus ’cause using WordPress comments, you can edit everything.
Why do I keep some of the well-written comments in the spam folder? When there isn’t much activity in my blog, I approve one of those spam comments just to keep my blog active. Again, this should be done sparingly as it can affect your ranking in the long run. I only do this on my personal blog and my other low-traffic blogs.
Why You Should Delete Spam Comments?
There are many reasons to delete spam comments. Here are a few of them:
- When you approve spam comments, you’re only letting them know you’re welcoming spam on your blog and they’ll do this again and again. This might sound like traffic to you, but letting them spam your blog, especially when the sites they link to have a bad rating from Google, it’ll hurt you more than you think.
- Those spammers who take the time to read and write insightful comments on your blog are getting paid for posting spam. If you approve their spam comments, it’s like handing them their check yourself. I always think about this when I do consider keeping a certain spam comment. Stop these spammers from receiving benefits from their spam comments you allowed.
- Allowing spam comments may give your actual and genuine readers and followers an impression that you don’t care about the quality of interaction or comments you get. If you’re maintaining a blog that’s receiving a lot of traffic and with a wide readership, you should delete spam comments right away.
- It may be a great deal of work to monitor spam on your blog, but it’s something you should be doing to prevent these spammers from benefiting from your traffic and search engine ranking that you worked hard for.
In the end, we must all be responsible in keeping spam off our blogs or websites. Though we can’t stop spam no matter what we do, we shouldn’t let them win and reap benefits from the traffic and rankings we worked hard for.
Tell me, how do you deal with spam comments? Share your experiences below. 🙂