Everyone likes to receive feedback and comments on their blogs and websites. Even I love getting to know what people think of my blogs and it's an added bonus if I get to answer their queries. Over the years this is what keeps blogger and writers going, that people love them and their content is making a difference! Right?
Well, I don't know about you but, this is something that makes me love my profession! You wanna know why?
Because this makes my WordPress website interactive and interesting and also tells me what should I do next - which way my users want me to go.
But over the time, I noticed that the ratio of spam comments kept on increasing, which was really frustrating. Because as much as I like receiving comments, I don't want my website to get flooded with spam comments in which people are just trying to get backlinks or people's attention!
Because spam comments not only spoil the energy but also take space in your database, making your website slow.
So, I decided to find the solution to it.
I tried many things, which I seriously hope no one has to go through. It was so frustrating because not all of them worked. There was always some loophole or the other through which spam comments would come creeping in.
Got the real Sherlock Holmes feels though trying to solve a mystery!
And solved the mystery, you know how? Huh! this one was easy, I thought why not combine a few steps together, and so, I did! Voila!
The spam was nowhere to be found in a few days!
Now that I have learned and experimented how to prevent spam comments, I thought it ought to be shared with you guys because there are still many people struggling with the same problem. And if I have the solution, why not share it with you, right?
So, let's see ways through which you can actually prevent spam comments on your WordPress website!
It's time to say goodbye to your Spam Commenters! Are you ready?
1. Removing the URL Field from the Comment Section
Most spam commenters are looking for
that's why they keep posting websites URL on the comment section. So let's just
Remove URL field
only, so they can't add any kind of link in the comment. Easy right?
This way they won't get any backlinks and their purpose of commenting is taken away from them! Let's take their happiness away! (not in a literal sense though!)
Hence, a decrease in spam comments on your WordPress website. Also, you can enjoy the comments from people who are actually interested in your content.
2. No-Follow Comment Links in WordPress
Usually, to get more traffic and engagement in starting, bloggers remove the no-follow attribute from their websites. Allowing Do follow linking which provides backlinking! This is like the biggest mistake you can make!
Never ever do that! Do you hear me? Never ever!!!!
It leads to more spam commenting on your website because why not? If you're gonna serve it to them this nicely, they are going to stuff it all in and make your website or blogs a backlinking hub.
So, always avoid do-follow attribute to prevent spam commenting and also if you don't provide backlinking they won't comment because it won't do any good to them!
3. Email Verification Before Commenting
Through email verification, whoever comments on your blogs will have a confirmation email. Only by clicking on that, their comment will display on the website. Spam commenters don't have time to sign in and check their emails because they are too busy commenting on other people's website.
Which is good news for us, as the number of spam comments will move down a little. This will increase the relevancy of the commenter as well as optimize the number of real commenters on your WordPress website.
4. Moderating Comments on the WordPress Website
There is an option in WordPress discussion settings page that website owner can moderate comments and has to approve every comment before publishing it. No one can enter without your consent! you can decide which comments to publish and which not.
But the issue with this is that if you didn't check your comments on time then it might take hours or days for a comment to publish and delay any kind of discussions that might take place. This not only which affects the user engagement but also might irritate your frequent commenters as they have to get their comments approved every time. And it gets annoying for you too, because its way too much work and you also have a business to handle.
Don't worry, I have found an easy solution for the same!
Why not allow comments of those commenters who were approved before?
So that only first commenting of any user needs approval and later they can directly comment on your WordPress website. This way you can stop spam comments also and people can easily discuss on your website as it creates a lot more engagement.
5. Akismet Plugin for WordPress
There are various plugins available in WordPress which help you prevent spam comments. Akismet is one such plugin and it comes preinstalled on every WordPress Website.
It's WordPress' version of Superman, who comes to your rescue. As it's an automated plugin which very effectively decreases your spam comments. It learns what according to you is spam and what is not.
Akismet also lets you see if any legitimate comments went into spam or no. If yes, you can always restore them back from your spam folder.
6. Third Party Commenting Systems
You can use third-party commenting services like Disqus, Facebook etc which helps you reduce spam comments. These have an inbuilt feature which doesn't allow spammers to add links. Sorry spammers, I totally know how much you hate it BUT you can also not do anything about.
7. Blacklisting the Frequent Spammers
Comment blacklist option in WordPress helps you to block or blacklist the commenters who are frequent spammers and are persistently attacking you. Its always said attack those who attack you! block them away, don't let anyone kill your vibe.
(Now just a minute. Why, I sound like Wonder women, I guess fighting the spam made me one!)
Wondering how they can be identified? Through some common features like URL, email, name, and content. This is an easy way as its already a feature in WordPress, though not many people know about it or use it. It blocks comments that are done manually and you can select whom to block, whom to not.
8. Block Spam Keywords in Comments
Another feature of WordPress that it allows you to block certain terms and keywords in your comment section. You just have to make a list of words in your discussion settings page and those words will be blocked.
Keywords you don't want your readers to use. Those comments will directly go into spam and won't be published on your WordPress website. You don't want your readers to read other's abusive or spammy language right? So, just block the key terms and prevent the spam.
9. Disable Comments from WordPress Settings
You can use this trick according to your preferences. You can either turn off comments on posts after a certain amount of time so that you can have some comments. As its hard to moderate a large number of posts, so, turn off comments on old posts so that you don't have to check them for spam comments.
OR you can cure the problem by cutting its roots only!
For which you just have to chop-chop your comment section. I mean, you can disable comments from the blogs right from the start and have a simple feedback that they like the content or not. Just a simple yes/no. If you don't have the comment section, you won't get any spam only!
10. ReCAPTCHA Test
It's a Challenge response type test where one has to write the characters and numbers provided in an image or just tick the box saying I am not a robot. It allows only humans, no robots!
You can use Google's reCAPTCHA service. The upgraded version also makes you select similar images to an example to ensure better results. This can be done by installing a simple plugin called WP- reCAPTCHA which can be included in your comments section to prevent spam comments on your WordPress website.
Though manually submission of spam comments in still possible, so I would recommend using other ways too to effectively prevent any spam comments. As you might have heard the more the merrier!
11. Math Quiz
Bots are smart only for what they are programmed, and dumb or all the other things. So, why not make use of it?
Math Quiz plugin is another type of captcha verification test. It makes your users answer simple mathematical questions which normal people can easily understand and answer. But bots aren't programmed for maths, so it's a rare possibility that they can answer those questions and comment spammy stuff on your website!
12. Honeypot Protection
HoneyPot technology is another way through which you can block spam comments done by bots. You just need to install a simple plugin called WP-Spam Fighter and activate honeypot technology in it.
It will add a hidden form which can only be seen by bots. And as bots are programmed in just filling the fields, they would fill that hidden form and their comments would be blocked immediately. hence, No more spam for you!
I know preventing Spam commenting is a tiresome work.
But with all these steps you will be free from spammers and can enjoy making new creative content for your loyal followers!
So, what are you waiting for?
Try out all or a few of these tricks, however you want it. Prevent spam comments on your WordPress website and don't forget to regularly check your spam folder to recover any legitimate comment. If you don't, you risk disappointing your readers more than waiting for their comment to show up and not getting a response in return.
I hope my tricks help you the way they did to me and you too can prevent spam comments through them, leave a comment and let me know, because feedbacks are what we live for, right?