Are you drowning in spam comments about the size of your anatomy? Do you get a ton messages from people telling your distant relative in Africa has died and left you a fortune? We once got a comment asking if someone could share the domain of our website with their friends?
I mean seriously, all these comments you get on your blog are spam and we all know that but what do you do about it?
First off, why are spam comments being written on my blog?
According to pretty much everyone who does SEO (search engine optimization), the best way to prove to Google, Bing, Yahoo, and any other search engine is to have a lot of different website linking back to your website. This is the digital version of having a lot of people talking about your business. Of course you want people to talk well of your business services but in all honesty good marketers can spin even bad publicity in their favor. This is exactly what spam comments do. A link gets put on your website that links back to another site. This makes the other site seem more credible and thus they get better rankings in the search engines. We call these backlinks.
Plain and simple, spam comments are a way to get backlinks.
Secondly, who writes these comments?
Spam comments comes from 2 possible groups:
Bots that scan the internet for places to leave comments in order to get backlinks.
Humans who want the same backlink but try to get around looking like spam so they write something that might sound reasonable but they put in their own website as part of the comment in order to get the backlink.
Now can you blame bots and people for wanting backlinks — not at all, we want them too.
However you can do something about it. Of course there is no perfect way to eliminate it all but these 6 ideas should help tremendously in removing and avoiding spam comments.
1. Activate Akismet if you are using WordPress for blogging
Akismet is a free plugin that only requires a WordPress.com account and it can grab most spam but of course not all that is made my the bots. It uses an algorithm to check certain details of the comment and then if it doesn’t pass, it simply kills the comment and doesn’t even let you see it.
2. Turn off the commenting ability if blog posts have reached a certain age
WordPress allows you to turn off the ability for new comments to be posted if the post has already been around for a certain amount of time. This is counted in days since we all know everything you write is super current. 😉
3. Disable trackbacks and pingbacks
Wait, what is a trackback and a pingback? Glad you asked.
Trackback – Trackbacks give bloggers the ability to communicate between websites. Sort of like tagging someone in your comment.
Pingback – Pingbacks enable bots or software to communicate from one site to another, kinda like commenting remotely.
This one should always be considered before totally jumping right in since you might actually want this feature as it can help your site if you use it correctly.
4. Make the website field in your comment not available
Since it all goes back to backlinks then removing the main designated area for people to put in the link back to their site is a pretty good idea. This field isn’t required so the easiest way to do remove it is simply to hide it. Simple add this code to your custom CSS page.
WordPress is already build for this. Just pull up the settings and add in the list, one per line, or anything you know to be spam related like the enhancement drug names or your brother-in-law’s name who keeps trying to swindle you on a pyramid scheme.
Well that is it for our list of basic things you can do to eliminate yourself of the unwanted spam comments. Now, go ahead and leave me a comment with your thoughts. No doubt I will get my own spam comments here….maybe I will even approve some just for fun.