Maintaining a blog isn’t just about writing great content; it’s about encouraging a dialogue with your audience. The comments section is the ideal place to encourage your guests to share their thoughts, ideas and opinions, but with so many spammers out there determined to butt in with their own inane and self-interested contributions, sometimes you need to step in and make sure the conversation stays clean, valuable and on-topic.
So how do you decide what gets deleted and what stays put? This post will help you determine the types of comments that should be deleted immediately, and those which require more thought before hitting the delete button.
Delete Right Away
1. Rude and Offensive Content
As blog owner, it’s your responsibility to constantly monitor your comments section for rude and crude content and keep anything that could cause offence off your site.
If your blog attracts a lot of this kind of content, it might be wise to follow the lead of some of the major names in blogging and set out what you expect from your audience in a set of commenter guidelines.
2. Obvious Spam
It goes without saying that you should remove any blatant spam content, such as comments that simply leave a link to another website. Filters such as Akismet will help block a lot of these annoying spammy comments, but a few will still leak through which will need your attention.
3. Not So Obvious Spam
This kind of comment is harder for filters to identify as spam, and can almost appear legitimate even to an untrained human eye. These comments typically include a poorly written comment which is vaguely on topic, along with anchor text linking to another website in an attempt to drive inbound links.
In some instances, it’s difficult to differentiate between these marginally more intelligent spam comments and somebody who perhaps just doesn’t know who to leave articulate comments, so you’ll have to rely on your own good judgement here.
4) Troll comments
Trolls are people who post aggressive or provocative comments simply because they enjoy getting a rise out of others. These people want you to respond to them, and the more you do, the more they’ll keep cluttering up your blog’s comment section with their irritating content.
While some might argue that you should simply delete these comments, in some cases this can actually encourage trolls to become more aggressive with their posting. For this reason, it’s usually best to just ignore suspected trollers, unless they are particularly offensive as we discussed earlier.
5. Foreign Language
If a comment in another language pops up on your blog, it can be difficult to immediately identify it as spam. Links are the biggest tell-tell sign, but it doesn’t take long to copy and paste the comment into a free online translation tool such as Google Translate to check whether it’s actually a genuine contribution from an overseas guest.
Do you have any tips for keeping on top of your blog’s comment section? Let us know below!