How to Use the Power of Comments to Drive More Website Traffic — 16 Comments

  1. Lesa,

    The tips you give are really timely for me. I started a blog some six months ago, but quickly gave up after receiving no readers. Today, I just posted my first blog in a long time and intend to continue publishing regular blogs in the career niche from now on. It’s important that my new blogs receive comment so that I don’t become discouraged again.

    Keep the tips coming!

    • Maria,
      Writing a blog is a lot of work and it can often feel like a waste of time when you don’t see immediate results. When you embark on blogging as a way to grow your business, you have to commit to do it over the long haul. It’s not a “get rich quick” or even “get noticed quick” kind of tool. It will, however, help you grow your business in a gradual, steady, and sustainable way.

      I popped over to your blog and left you a couple of comments (just followed the link in your comment like many blog owners will do when you leave an interesting comment). You have some great content there.

      • Lesa,
        You’re right, persistence is a virtue that shouldn’t be underestimated. I’m not seeking to offer excuses, but when I first started blogging I wasn’t quite ready because I hadn’t set up other facets of my business. Now that I’ve done that, I’m committed to stick with regular blogging. I realise that results will likely come slowly at first, but I’m confident that perseverance will pay off in the end.

        Thank you for checking out my blog and posting comments.

        • You hit on one of the challenges that derails a lot of would-be bloggers — getting started before are the support pieces are in place, in particular knowing who you are writing for and what you want to write about. Once those two keys pieces are in place, blogging becomes a whole lot easier.

          Blogging can sometimes be a lonely endeavor so I’m glad you’ve found some support here. It’s surprising how much of a difference just a little bit of encouragement can make. I’m looking forward to reading more of what you write.

    • There are many benefits to be had from spending some time leaving comments on the blogs you visit. And visitors like you are just one such benefit. Thanks for visiting and leaving proof that this actually works. Hope to see you back here again soon.

  2. Lesa,
    This is more a question than a comment. I hope that’s ok.

    I posted replies to your comments on my blog, but unlike in your blog where replies are indented under the original comments they refer to, my replies look like separate comments not linked to your comment in any way.

    I note that WordPress Settings does have an option to enable comment threading, which I have checked. However, my blog site didn’t give me the option to reply to your comment specifically.

    Do you know how I can imitate the threaded comment view of your blog?

    • Maria, It is likely that your theme doesn’t support threaded comments. This functionaity was added to WordPress with release 2.7 so if your theme hasn’t been updated since before the release of 2.7 that is likely the problem. You can doublecheck that it is your theme by switching to the defulat theme, Twenty Ten. If you can see the reply link in Twenty Ten, then the problem is that your preferred theme doesn’t support threaded comments.

      • Lesa, my husband tells me you’re absolutely right about the theme not supporting threaded comments. However, he has found a free WordPress plugin that adds the threaded comments to a blog. Apparently, you can even define your own stylesheet for it, though my husband (who is self-taught and doesn’t really understand this stuff) couldn’t get it to work properly. He says he may mess around with it a bit more later.

        The name of the plugin is Discussion. Just go to my blog if you want to see it in action.

        • Maria, Your comments look much better with the addition of Discussion! Plugins are a great way to add functionality to your WordPress site that isn’t included in your theme.

          Unfortunately, it may also be your theme that is preventing the CSS for the plugin from working properly. Your theme doesn’t support nested comments so it might not have the same designations in its CSS as those in the plugin. It’s like the plugin is saying “change xyz to blue” but the theme doesn’t know what xyz is!

          You’ll likely either have to learn to live with the limits imposed on you by your current theme or change themes. I’d recommend you take a look at Weaver. It’s a free theme that is highly customizable and has great tutorials and support (I use it on this site). Many of the design elements in Weaver are similar to your current theme so after switching (and doing a small amount of tweaking) the only difference you’d notice would be ease of use on the backend.

  3. Thank you for the theme suggestion, Lesa.

    To be honest, I don’t understand much of this stuff, but my husband had also suggested a change of theme some time in the future when he has more time to look into it. Although he knows enough to muddle his way around, he’ll readily admit himself that he’s just learning and needs time to get things working properly.

    For now, we’re satisfied with how the blog comment section looks with the addition of the Discussion plugin. There’s other higher priority things we need to do first.

  4. That’s a really good idea about the blog commenting tribe. I’ve never thought about it but it makes a lot of sense. A lot of readers see comments as being a sign that the site gets a lot of traffic (even though that’s not necessarily the case) which makes comments so important.

  5. Wow. Great blog and even better comments. While I can’t say that I understand all of Maria’s comments, I can say that I will look up those things and figure it out.

    Thanks again!


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