Building Links with Blog Comments

blog commenting linksIf you’re building links by making comments on other blogs, perfect, it’s one way way to get backlinks to your site for free, however it’s also one of the most misused and misunderstood link building strategies.

There’s nothing wrong with building links with blog comments but there are many misconceptions about how  to effectively comment on other blogs and also how valuable those links really are.

I love reading the comments that I get on my blog, it’s a highlight of my day, but it’s also a pain in the “you know what” when I have to sift through comments that are made only to benefit the commenter, meaning they offer no value to the post, conversation or to my readers.

It’s OK to comment with the intention of building links back to your site but don’t make that your primary objective.

Comment with the intent of providing useful information, adding value to the conversation, clarifying a topic or simply just adding amusement or something interesting.

Many of my sales have come from the constructive, informative comments I’ve posted to other blogs. I’ve gotten a lot more out of writing comments that appeal to people first. If someone likes what you’ve written they won’t mind clicking through to your site to find out what other cool tidbits you have to offer.  But no one finds interest in comments like ‘Nice Post’ or ‘Thanks for the info“.

If you’re going to be building links via blog comments, make them count. Don’t leave comments like ‘Love your Post“, “Great info” or my personal favorite “I have not come across such a site as yours, it has everything I need to know“.  Flattery will get you nowhere 😉  This doesn’t add value for either you or the blog your commenting on.

It also isn’t productive to make comments that don’t make sense.  I often delete comments that have wrong information, poor grammar, spelling errors or don’t directly relate to the post, which I get a lot. But I’m not alone in doing this, most professional webmaster’s, who value the content on their blogs, will do the same.

Here’s what I do to help ensure my comments won’t be deleted by the webmaster and get click-thru’s to my site:

  • Always read the entire post before commenting.  Make a few mental notes of questions, ideas or opinions you have.  Then write 2 or 3 quality sentences that a reader will learn something from or find interesting and insightful.

Try being a little controversial without being offensive.  If you’re not clear about something in the post, ask a question, it might be something other readers are also wondering about. If you don’t agree with something in the post, mention it, but say it with tactfulness and respect.

  • In the ‘name’ section of the comment, you’re always safe with putting your first name.  If the blog has commentluv installed then you can use a keyword phrase, but if in doubt it’s better to use your name.  While some blogs do allow you to put a keyword phrase as a name, not all of them do.

If you happen to put a keyword phrase in the name and the blog does not accept it, your comment could be lost. Try testing it first by making a copy of your comment before hitting submit, that way you can go back, paste your comment in and try again using your name this time.

  • In the URL section of the comment, most blogs accept only the home page URL of your website, however some blogs will accept site pages.  For example, let’s say you are commenting about washing a cat and you have a page on your website about ‘how to bathe a cat’ it’s a benefit to be able to reference that page in the URL.

There aren’t too many blogs that will accept site pages, but it can be worth testing. Again, be sure to copy your comment before submitting.

Building links with blog comments is a perfectly accepted link building strategy, however don’t be selfish, use it with the intention of benefiting everyone. You’ll be giving more but you’ll get much more in the process.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Comments

  1. Hector Cuevas says:

    Hey Liz,

    Blog commenting have so many benefits, and link building is just one of them. About site pages, I tried this for awhile, but my comments were ending up in the spam folder, so I stopped – but testing this on some sites is a good idea.

    thanks for sharing
    talk soon
    Hector

    • Hi Hector, referencing site pages means testing, but this strategy, unfortunately, attracts the spammers so most blog owners don’t allow it.

  2. Heather C Stephens says:

    Hi Liz,

    I don’t think you could have said it better. Comment spam can be frustrating. I’ve found for myself that I get great comments when I leave great comments. It’s the old–to have a friend you have to be a friend–situation. If I’ve left someone a helpful or meaningful comment they’re more likely to visit my blog and leave me one too.

    I also see a huge push toward do-follow blogs because they encourage your readers to leave comments and allow you to reward them with a little bit of link juice back, but the challenge is that you do get a few more of those “great post” types of comments. I just delete them and move on. I have created a dofollow badge for someone to add to their blog to let their readers know they are on a do follow blog. It helps encourage great interaction with your readers.

    Thanks for the “tips” on leaving good comments!

  3. Heather C Stephens says:

    Hi Liz,

    Great post, comment spam can be frustrating but I do find that when I leave great comments for people I get great comments back. It’s the old…to have friends you have to be a friend, rule.

    I also think there is a benefit to having a do follow blog because your readers get rewarded for leaving a comment. If they know your policy of deleting “Great Info” or “Love Your Post” types of comments that don’t add value, they’re more likely to interact and offer value. I’ve got a free badge on my blog that I created to help my readers know that I have a do follow blog and they will get some link love from me. I do think that it’s helped me to get better comments and more comments than without it.

    I loved your tips for leaving great comments. Thanks for sharing them.

    Heather

    • Hey Heather, I love your free badge idea. I’ll be checking into that more later on today. It looks like a great incentive to get constructive comments for your blog. Thanks for the tip 😉

  4. Michael B Wilbraham says:

    Hi Liz, this is really good advice I wish more people would take & use. I “kill” on average, 30 or so “comments” a day from posters (posers?) who spam purely to get a backlink. I believe they are using some sort of comments submitter/spinner software to do so.

    I cannot understand why they believe their strategy will work. It’s a total waste of time.Surely any blogger worth their salt will check every comment they receive before approving it for publication on their blog? I know I wouldn’t have it any other way.

    Thank goodness for Akismet! I haven’t been able to fault it yet.

    Cheers, Michael

  5. Peter Fuller MBA says:

    Hey Liz

    When I read a post that inspires or moves I love saying “Love your post” :)

    Of course I try to follow up with something useful or maybe a little humorous.

    And like Michael, “Thank goodness for Akismet”, So far it has caught all spam messages and only a few have been categorized as spam that were not.

    Peter

    • Hey Peter, I’ve always wondered about the spammers, don’t they know that most bloggers use Akismet? So many of them go to a lot of trouble making useless comments for nothing.

  6. Hi Liz,

    I’m very glad to read this post. I’ve been raising my eyebrows at a few comments recently, mostly on blogs other than my own that I’ve visited.

    I do like to add my appreciation for posts where I feel it’s deserved, But I completely agree with you the main issue is whether you’re offering some kind of value or constructive observation with your comment.

    Thankfully I haven’t suffered from the spammers yet, but my Akismet is activated just in case.

    Cheers,

    Jym

  7. Michael B Wilbraham says:

    Liz, comment spammers usually make use of software to get the comments onto your blog. That’s why sometimes you get comments that are totally unrelated to your blog, or that do not make any sense at all. This software can also “spin” a comment before submitting it.

    This means that these comments are not made by real people actually visiting your blog…so no traffic from them!

    That notwithstanding…stay inspired!
    Michael

    • Michael, I figured it had to be something like that, I’m not very versed on how the spammers do things, but what’s happening makes better sense now. Thanks!

  8. Mavis Nong says:

    Hey Liz,

    You have hit the nail on the head! I agree, Akismet is doing a great job catching those spam comments.

    I always copy my comments before hitting ‘submit’ just in case something happens, then I would have to retype.

    Thanks for sharing your insights.

    All the best,
    Mavis Nong

    • Hey Mavis, yes, I’m just in the habit of copying my comments no matter what, it’s a good practice 😉

  9. Oliver Tausend says:

    Hi Liz,

    I love commenting on other people’s blogs because it helps me to think about the content and to process the post. Of course, I always try to add value and/or something meaningful to the discussion. Of course, Akismet is a must-have, but it catches a lot of legitimate comments too, unfortunately.

    I agree with Peter that I sometimes need to write – spontaneously – that I really loved this post, but usually with giving one or two reasons what I liked about the post. And I usually accept them on my blog if they’re not anonymous or stuffed with links

    Linkbuilding is a nice side effect of blog commenting.

    Thanks for sharing your tips.

    Take care

    Oliver

    • Hey Oliver, it’s funny you should mention how some legit comments get into the spam bucket as this comment was in my spam : – ( Not sure why. I haven’t figured out what triggers a post to be sent to spam yet. Good thing I monitor my comments :-)

  10. Josh Garcia says:

    Hey Liz,

    Commenting on someone else blog should be taken seriously. It does have its benefits when commenting. Now, if you are trying to comment with a drill down page. Most likely it is going to end up in my spam folder. I typically delete them.

    Chat with you later…
    Josh

  11. Susanna Hess says:

    Hi Liz,

    When I first came online I heard it was good to make comments. I didn’t know about back links at the time. I made it a point to let the author know if I liked it and it was HARD to find the courage to even say “Great Post!”

    Later I read someone’s post along the lines of this one. My cheeks were flaming because I felt they were talking to ME! But I didn’t know it was frowned on, I was trying to come out of my shell and communicate when I enjoyed a post.

    I didn’t really get the idea of back links until someone offered to show me what back links my blog was getting… when I saw that, I finally got it.

    This is a great post, and you are so right, providing a real comment is worth the time it takes to really read the post and write it up. (It’s so obvious when someone hasn’t REALLY read the post, or has only read the headline and subheads. Annoying.)

    So if there are any super shy newbs reading this (like I was), just bite the bullet and write a REAL comment.

    Susanna

  12. Definitely something more people need to know about, Liz.

    Comment etiquette is something that is widely ignored, yet, as you correctly noted, one valuable comment can bring a lot more than just a backlink, but targeted readership as well.

    Ana Hoffman

  13. Hey Liz,

    Commenting is something I definitely enjoy doing, and I always try to add to the discussion. Like Oliver says, it gives me great ideas for future posts. This is what blogs were made for – for people to come together and interact with each other and have a meaningful discussion.

    But with all of the information, and misinformation on the internet about SEO, people are just tempted to abuse social sites. It’s unfortunate, but we’ve got to take the good with the bad. Most people post good, thoughtful comments and I appreciate them.

    Thanks for spreading the word,
    Wayne

  14. Marcus Baker says:

    Hi Liz,

    I guess a lot of people don’t understand that leaving comments that add value to the discussion at hand is a way of marketing oneself too.

    Every time you write a comment, you have the opportunity to reveal more about who you are.

    I have never understood why people settle for a useless link thieving comment when they could be optimizing the comment opportunity for themselves and at the same time contribute to the value shared by the post author.

    Well said Liz and let’s hope many will learn their lesson from reading this.

    ~Marcus

  15. Hey Robert, I check the sites that comment as well. This is also a great way to network and become familiar with other great sites. I’ve met a lot of awesome marketers and business owners that way 😉

  16. James, yes, backlinking is only one strategy, there are many others including good internal linking as you mention. You need a good mix of promotional strategies and SEO to improve your rankings, it should never just be one thing, thanks :-)

  17. Aine, Reciprocal linking is still done and it does provide some benefit but not as much as one way linking. Don’t put too much weight on pagerank, it has no affect on actual search engine rankings. Here’s a post that Lynn Terry did that may help: http://www.clicknewz.com/1173/google-pagerank-debate/

  18. I have been building back to my site with comments. I think the best thing to do is find a blog you really like following. That way you are more likly to make a contribution and enjoy yourself while marketing your site.

    • Hey Melva, Exactly! If you can find authority blogs that you can confidently contribute to on a consistent basis you will be demonstrating your authority as well as develop a following. This all goes a long way with building link juice and search engine love.

  19. Hey Ryan, Blog commenting is a popular way to build links but as you said there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it. The right way is to make comments that make an impression on readers and of course they have to be comments that the blog owner would want to approve. It’s amazing to me that many marketers use software to make spammy comments thinking this helps them and it’s even more unfortunate that mentoring marketers are teaching these methods. Thanks for your feedback Ryan :-)

Speak Your Mind

*

CommentLuv badge