Comments have always been an integral part of a blog. Engagement is one of the key ingredients of building a successful blog, right? However, some question whether allowing comments on a blog is at all that important.
Should you disable comments on your blog?
Well, before I try and answer this question for you, I know there’s already been some debate about this topic.
I decided to write this post because I wanted to add my 2 cent’s worth and hopefully by the time you’ve read this post you’ll be able to decide for yourself.
Also, wanted to take the opportunity to look at, and share with you the advantages and disadvantages of disabling the comment feature on your blog.
So if you’re seriously thinking about removing comments altogether, for what ever reason, just hold off until you’ve read this post.
OK, let’s get on with the post.
First of all, ask yourself this:
“Why should I disable comments on my blog?”
I think that’s the best way to start, by asking yourself, Why do you want to do this?
Here are some possible reasons –
- It could be because you want to spend less time reading through and responding to comments every single day.
- It could be because you want to only showcase your awesome content without engaging with an audience.
- It could be because you don’t have time for comments, full-stop.
What ever your reasons may be for the moment, let’s just start off by weighing up the advantages and disadvantages of turning off comments on your blog.
4 huge disadvantages of turning off comments
Let’s start with the disadvantages, OK?
#1. Zero engagement or conversations
I think this is a BIG disadvantage because blogging has always been about the conversations.
Comments on a blog help you to make those all important connections with your audience, your readers. They help you build relationships. I’ll talk more about that in point #3.
OK here’s a really stupid way to look at it –
Think about eating a cold slice of toast with no butter and jam.
I did say it was stupid.
Anyway, you know there’s something missing, right?
Your toast should be warm, butter should be melting off the top of it with a nice dollop of sweet jam.
Cold toast is bland, as bland as a blog with zero engagement.
If you turn off comments, that’s exactly what it will be… like eating a slice of bland toast.
Also, it’s not just about the engagement value, but comments help you to understand more about your reader’s needs so that in future posts you can try and address those needs.
#2. Is your blog active or dead, who knows
When visitors come to your blog for the first time and see lots of engaging conversations going on, they immediately get the impression that hey, this blog must be pretty popular, let me check it out.
It’s also validation, proof that your blog has an active audience. People are reading your post, sharing their thoughts and adding value to your content.
Lots of engaging comments also show that you are an authority in your industry and that people are actually listening to you, following you and communicating with you through comments.
When other people are visiting your blog for the first time, they see all these comments and this will encourage them to want to do the same, and perhaps even subscribe to your newsletter too, who knows.
If you disable comments, you’ll have no proof to show to anyone that your blog is indeed alive and active. Perhaps you can depend on social shares to do this for you.
#3. Difficult for you to build relationships and strengthen those relationships
Following on from the last two points I made about zero engagement and providing no proof that your blog is indeed alive, with engagement, comes the strengthening of relationships between YOU and your readers, your community.
That is vitally important.
When regular visitors and other bloggers drop by to leave meaningful comments and you respond to them, something truly magical happens. You become connected, intertwined, and over time those relationships strengthen.
This is how trust and credibility are gained online, and that to me is extremely important.
#4. Difficult for you to fully understand the need of your audiences
I kind of touched on this in my first point, but let me dive a little deeper.
Allowing your readers to comment on your blog makes it easier for you to tune-in and truly listen to what they’re asking for.
You can see what questions they’re asking in the comment section? What are the conversations about on your blog too?
Understanding your reader’s needs will help you to determine what types of content to create for them in the future.
For example, they might be experiencing some problems and maybe you can create new content that helps them to solve those problems.
As you continue to engage more with your audience, you become more connected with them and on a more personal level too.
You get to understand them and their needs better. Blog comments can do all of those great things and more.
So what about the advantages of turning off blog comments? Let’s take a look.
3 huge advantages of turning off comments on your blog
There was a time when I turned off comments on this website’s blog for three whole months.
For three whole months I had zero comments and zero engagement and here’s what I found –
#1. Instant justification for spam comments and time saved!
Spam comments used to take me quite a bit of time to sieve through.
More often than not I’d always find a handful of good comments caught up in the spam folder too. Disabling comments meant that all those spammy comments simply vanished.
And as for time, well, I had more free time to focus on other areas of my blog.
#2. No more zero comments on posts
If you have a blog that gets a lot of comments, then that’s great. But, if your blog doesn’t receive many comments, to begin with, that’s not so great.
I know that many new blogs struggle to get comments in the beginning, however, they will come with time, and with lots of marketing and promotion.
The problem sometimes with having a blog with lots of ‘zero comments’ in posts is that some people will instantly think that your blog is NOT popular.
When people visit your blog and they see big fat zeros in your content, this can sometimes discourage them from breaking the ice and making the first comment.
Some visitors may automatically assume that just because your blog doesn’t get many comments, it can’t be very good or popular.
A good tip, in this instance, might be to turn off comments on posts that have received no comments after a while.
#3. I saved some money
I paid for premium services for my comments spam filtering such as Akismet. By disabling comments I saved myself $60 for the whole year because I ended up disabling comments for the whole year in the end.
So there you have it. Of course, there are plenty of other reasons why some bloggers might want to consider disabling comments on their blogs.
At the end of the day, despite reading all the advantages and disadvantages, YOU have to make the decision for yourself.
If you think you really need to save time, focus more on other areas of your blog, and if you don’t care much for engagement or interaction on your blog, then turn off comments.
Also, maybe you want to shift the engagement over onto your social media outlets or another medium, that’s another reason why some bloggers and marketers want to disable comments on their blogs.
My personal opinion is that receiving blog comments is an essential element for building an active blog community.
So there you have it peeps if you’re thinking about removing comments from your blog for what ever reason, I do hope this post has helped you to make a better decision before you do.