If you’re not fully up to speed with the various commenting systems for your blog, I’ve done a lot of research now into the various commenting systems such as the standard WordPress comments system, IntenseDebate, Disqus and Facebook Comments for WordPress.
A short while ago, I made a decision to use Facebook comments for my blog knowing that there was a plugin available which could allow me to integrate a Facebook application within my blog using a few simple settings from Facebook. It seemed like a logical kind of idea at the time and I read on Mike Filsaime’s blog that he even thought it was a great idea, so I thought I would test it and see what results I got.
Briefly, if you’re not sure on the importance of why you want to get blog comments, allow me to explain the benefits:
- You get actual feedback from the people who are actually reading your blog. This gives you an insight into their mindset, needs, desires, fears and aspirations. If you are sensitive to these needs, you can develop a product and/or deliver a solution to meet those needs. Market research direct from those that matter… I like it!
- Blog optimisation: Ever since the Caffeine update of Google’s algorithm back in June 2010, one of the key factors for SEO is what Google calls ‘Activity’. Essentially whenever someone leaves a comment on your blog, it’s considered as activity and therefore is considered as a positive vote for your content. The more positive ‘votes’ you can get for your content (ie. blog posts), the more relevance Google will consider it and therefore the better the chance of your web pages appearing higher in Google’s search results which of course gives you a greater chance of getting free traffic from Google.
- Not many people know about this one, but another key factor for SEO is the speed of page load times. Google monitors how long it takes for pages to load on your site. The faster they load, the more relevant they are considered to be. This is why you can get Google Analytics for free. Google wants to have a way of tracking how your site performs. Google can determine how long people are staying on your site, how many pages they view, which pages they enter and exit from and the page load times. All of these factors determine page relevancy and ranking within Google.
Facebook Comments – Perceived Benefits & Actual Truth
Perceived Benefit: Viral distribution of content
Actual Truth: By the time the comment goes onto the commenter’s wall and news feed, the comment is irrelevant because the people who see the comment cannot see the context in which the comment was made, therefore the comment would appear irrelevant and you wouldn’t get the benefit of drawing the traffic from their network.
Perceived Benefit: People will “like” your content and more traffic will come to your site.
Actual Truth: This can (and does) happen as people will use the Facebook “like” button, however this can be achieved by simply installing the Facebook “Like” button without the full Facebook comments system.
Another drawback from Facebook comments is that it is the longest loading element on your pages which slows down load time, drains resources (even if cached) and ultimately means that Google will see your content as less relevant.
Facebook is an awesome way to leverage other people’s networks and spread your content over the web. Whilst we’re on the subject, so is Twitter.
I’d recommend that if you’re going to use Facebook as part of your traffic generation strategies, then simply use the Facebook “Like” button rather than the full Facebook Comments for WordPress plugin which enables you to integrate your WordPress blog to Facebook.
Let everyone know about your experience with various blog commenting systems in the comments below.
To Your Online Success,
The Profit Share
The mutt's nuts or the dog's drivel? I double dare you to leave a comment! :-)