Comments are social proof that let potential visitors know your blog is worth their time, as well as giving them a chance to share their thoughts and opinions. Once you have some comments, it gives your post an air of credibility, and other visitors will be more likely to chime in with their feedback, too.
It’s important to remember that not every comment will be positive; some people will disagree with you or give you negative feedback on your post.
This opinion can be tough to hear, but it’s worth considering their advice and taking action where necessary if the comments are constructive.
The more helpful your comments are, the more people will comment, and your blog’s feedback loop will become better.
Once you start attracting a good number of comments, other visitors seem to take it upon themselves to begin leaving their thoughts and opinions too.
Of course, the converse is also true: when comments are absent (and no replies to the few there are), it tells people your blog is uninteresting, and nobody wants to invest their time in it.
As you can see, comments play a vital role in encouraging more readers to return.
That makes getting more comments one of the best ways you can improve your blog for both existing visitors and those who haven’t yet discovered you – which leads me nicely onto today’s main subject: How To Encourage More Comments On Your Blog
Make It Easy For People To Comment
The easiest way to encourage more comments is to make it as easy as possible for people to leave their thoughts and opinions on your blog.
Here are some ways you can do that:
The simplest thing you can do is remove all the fields from the comment form apart from ‘name’ (and optionally your URL, if you like).
Visitors won’t have to spend time filling out lengthy forms before they leave a comment; instead, they can get straight down to what’s important, which is sharing their opinion with others.
Another thing you could do is focus on commenting systems like Disqus or a social plugin like Facebook Comments, replacing your blog comments with these external services.
Both systems offer dynamic commenting widgets that let people engage with your posts without ever leaving your website – this leads to far more comments than the typical blog comments section.
Both of these solutions come with benefits and drawbacks, but they’re good options to consider if you want to get more out of your blog comments.
Repurpose Your Old Comments
You can encourage further engagement by taking content from existing blog comments and sharing it elsewhere on the web (naturally linking back to the original post).
This strategy is an excellent way to:
- Reach a new audience who didn’t see the original article
- Provide additional value for original commenters
- Build social proof because other sites are sharing content from your blog.
There are several ways you can repurpose old comments:
Create a round-up post that features some of the best comments from your previous posts. Treat each one as an individual guest post. Use quotes or snippets to illustrate points in other articles you write. Create slide shows or infographics – this is useful if the topic warrants further explanation, but it’s always better to provide links back to original discussions.
By using unique content along with links, you reduce the chances of search engines seeing these as duplicate results which can cause it to lose its ranking.
Reward Engagement And Make Feedback Rewarding
You want people to leave comments on your blog, so what’s the best way to encourage them?
Give them something back, of course.
You can do this by:
- Replying to comments and starting a conversation
- Linking to relevant products or services that are appropriate for the comment being left
- Letting people know their opinion is valued by curating the best comments into round-up posts or similar.
When you reply to blog comments, it gives your visitors another reason to return because they know you’re interested in what they have to say.
People love being heard, so let them have the last word even if you don’t have anything to say!
This type of engagement lets other readers know that you care about making your blog an active community rather than just another site where people leave anonymous comments without anyone ever getting back to them.
It also helps you understand your audience better; who wouldn’t want that?
Make Your Readers Feel Like Part Of The Conversation
If someone feels like they’re part of a conversation, they’ll be more inclined to participate in it. But how do you get other people involved when you can’t engage with every one of them?
The best way is to create the illusion that everyone has their say. Use social plugins for comments (such as Facebook Comments) so that visitors can see posts from friends who have commented on your blog posts, which encourages others to leave their thoughts too. You can also ask readers if there are any common questions or misconceptions about the topic.
Show your readers that you’re not just talking to yourself – other people are listening and adding their own opinions, which gives them more reason to join in!
Turn Comments Into Conversations With The Blog Owner
Using comments as a conversation starter is also a great way to build relationships with your blog visitors. It means they can connect with you on a more personal level because they know you have something to say back, rather than having to sit around waiting for an anonymous reply from another reader.
Plus, it’s far easier for people to comment on your blog when there is already some pre-existing conversation going on because it makes them feel like part of the group. They’re more likely to want to stay involved with the discussion.
The best way to do this is by replying to comments on your blog posts so that you can start conversations and build relationships – effectively turning your blog comments into mini-interviews.
You could also ask for feedback or opinions on how someone has used something or ask for help finding a solution, etc. Again, this approach helps humanize your brand by giving readers an insight into who you are and what you stand for.
Please don’t take my word for it, though; try it out and see what happens!
Use Comments As A Way To Increase Promotion And Social Media Sharing
If you’re thinking of leaving a comment, it’s probably because you feel passionate about something – whether that’s someone else’s blog post or their brand.
So why not promote them in the process?
Ensure that people know that they can follow you on Twitter or Facebook by linking to your social media accounts within your comment.
More importantly, link each time back to the source where you found the blog post so other readers can see what sparked your interest.
You could even leave a link to an article written by someone else if it relates to the topic being discussed further down the road – this tells visitors that you keep up with industry news and are plugged into what’s happening in your industry.
If you’re promoting a personal brand, try mentioning that person alongside your link to their blog or social media page. Then, readers of one site can find other sources on the same topic, and they might decide to follow more people as a result.
Encourage Comments With Questions
There are two types of questions you can ask to encourage comments: discussion-starting questions and rhetorical questions.
Discussion-starting questions are those that encourage people to have a conversation with each other, such as:
“Which do you prefer – X or Y?”
Rhetorical questions also invite thoughts but don’t necessarily need answers; examples include “I wonder if…” and “What do you think about?”.
These types can be great ways to encourage comments on your blog because they spark conversations and make it easy to get feedback.
Not only this, but by entering into a discussion with other readers or asking them what they think about something specific, there’s more chance that people will want to weigh in!
Make Comments Mandatory
If you’re struggling to encourage comments on your blog, why not try making them mandatory? This tactic is not one that I have used myself, but it can be controversial, so use it with caution!
You don’t have to put up an enormous warning telling people they are about to see mandatory comments; just quietly slip it in, so people don’t notice.
Then use some of the techniques above – asking rhetorical questions or promoting the commenter through social media to increase engagement and get readers more involved.
The main benefit of this approach is that it makes people feel more accountable for their comments because they know there won’t be any excuses if they fail to leave one!
Plus, it can also encourage more discussion because if people know that they have to respond, they’ll often go the extra mile to find out more information or give their input.
The main downside is that some readers might feel like it’s too much effort to comment each time and will stop visiting your site altogether – so be sure to balance up the pros and cons before making comments compulsory.
Leave A Reply That Gives Them Something To Respond To
People may well comment on the content you write, but there are other ways that you can get them engaging with each other.
This tactic includes using different call-to-action methods within blog posts themselves, such as asking questions at an appropriate point in your post or giving people a reason to share it.
For example, if you’re writing a post about the different ways to market your blog, try including several examples within it that they can check out without leaving your site.
You could even include images of these results at the end of each section so they know just how powerful it is. This encourages readers to comment on your blog with their own experiences rather than just saying they agree or disagree!
A great way to do this is by hosting a contest or asking people to explain what has worked for them in the past.
This method gets them to acknowledge what others have done and makes it easier to find common ground together through sharing knowledge.
Ask People To Their Views
There are few better ways to encourage comments than by asking people what they think. Depending on your niche, this can be an effective way to find out what’s working and what isn’t, giving you more information about your readership, which you can use to improve site content.
Some of the questions you might ask could include:
- How do you feel about X?
- What are your thoughts about Y
- Do you have any experience with Z?
Not only is this a great way to encourage reader interaction, but it also gives people the opportunity to speak their minds without feeling restricted – not everyone wants to write at length outside of commenting!
Therefore if your blog usually gets short responses, then why not try asking them some questions instead? If you use the right type of question, it can be an effective way to get people talking.
Include Sharing Options Throughout Your Post
As well as including call-to-actions within your post (such as asking readers what they think), you should also have sharing options, so it’s easy for them to spread the word about your content.
The more people who read and share your posts, the more people will visit your site – which means engaging with their content is easier.
- Add sharing buttons throughout each blog post
- Share your posts on social media networks immediately after publishing them
- Use hashtags when tweeting/posting about blog updates/new articles
If somebody likes what they see, then there are plenty of opportunities for them to get in touch with the rest of the world – there’s no excuse not to share.
Plus, it will motivate them to engage with your content so they don’t miss out and get the most from what you provide!
Increase Engagement With More Images And Video
When we want to read a blog post, we often head straight for the text. But if you add more images or video into the mix, people are far more likely to comment – after all, it’s much easier than reading through loads of words.
A great way to use this technique is by including quotes within your blog posts at appropriate points throughout the text. These break up the passage creatively, but they also give people a topic for discussion when they do comment.
If one quote stands out particularly well, it can also be great for inspiring conversation.
But this doesn’t mean you should add images to every post – that way lies certain death! Instead, use them when it makes sense within the text and at points where you want people to focus their attention rather than just reading through without stopping.
If you can create images that will help promote your blog, even better, they serve two purposes at once.
We’re only scratching the surface of what’s possible. Try taking some of these techniques for a spin on your content to see how they affect your blog.
Don’t be afraid to mix it up if you think something else could work better; find the right formula for your site and keep experimenting.
If there is one thing that will help you get more comments on your blog, then it’s finding out what works best for you!
I hope this article has given you some inspiration for getting people to comment on your content – if not, let me know in the comments box below what else might help!
Good luck with all of your blogging projects, Lori 🙂