I recently installed two new WordPress Plugings designed to increase comments in the blog. It’s a bit too early to tell what kind of impact they will have but I think it will be positive, especially after I explain the benefits.
Subscribe to Comments 2.0
The first Plugin, Subscribe to Comments 2.0, adds a “Notify me of followup comments via e-mail” check box below the submit comment button so users can keep track of the comments. When a new comment is made to the post, an email is sent to the subscriber notifying them. This is a much better system than subscribing to the individual comment RSS. I make over 70+ posts per month. That’s a lot of individual RSS subscription to manage. Only readers who have made a comment can use this feature. That in itself encourages comments.
The Plugin is very easy to install – just upload two files and activate the Plugin in the WordPress Plugins control panel. If you’re running an older version of WordPress, you’ll have to add a piece of PHP code to your template to call up the plugin.
Show Top Commentators
The second Plugin is call Show Top Commentators. This Plugin encourages feedback and discussion by rewarding reader for making a comment. The top commentators are displayed on the right sidebar (under Categories) along with the number of comments made and a link back to their site or blog.
Here’s the real incentive – unlike links in the comments, the links on the Top Commentators are full links without a nofollow tag. That mean you’ll get loved by Google as well as traffic! Over 60 bloggers submitted a review of my blog so they can get a linkback without a nofollow tag. This is another way to do the same thing, and on an ongoing basis. Just make sure your comment is a real comment and not spam!
To install the Plugin, upload the single file to the Plugins folder and
activate it in your WordPress Plugins control panel. Then add <?php
ns_show_top_commentators(); ?> to the part of your template where you want the top commentators to appear. The sidebar would be the most common place.
Right now, the Top Commentators are reset once per month. I may change that to once per week depending on how things go. The Plugin gives you the option to adjust the resetting from a day, a week, a month, a week, or never.