Different Take on Site Comments Debate!

Last Update: February 17, 2019

A Different View for Site Comments

I'm going to give a different take on Site Comments that may not be popular considering everything that I've been reading lately. There has been a lot of criticism, a lot of complaining about quality, and a lot of accusations of laziness.

So let me start by saying that I've given hundreds of comments and have a 99% approval rate. Of the comments that were disapproved, one was for stating that I hadn't heard of the product before finding his blog and the other I was told was disapproved in error after contacting the owner to ask why.

I tell you this so that you know I'm not someone who's just upset because I leave bad comments and people keep disapproving them. I try to find something in the post to connect with and leave a genuine comment based upon that.

On my websites, I have received over 1000 comments, and the vast majority are from Wealthy Affiliate members. In total, I have disapproved approximately 6 of them, 5 were total feedback and 1 was obviously written on my site in error.

With all that said, let's get real about Site Comments!

Getting Real About "Good" Comments!

There are members who seem to believe that a good comment requires someone to write 3 or 4 paragraphs, always say nothing but wonderfully positive, unique things about their post or product, have every T crossed and I dotted perfectly, be written in perfect English, and have the correct keywords.

Do you really think that the average organic commenter always writes that way? Why is it ok to criticize anyone for not being perfect, and why would you want every comment to be perfect?

The reality is that giving comments can take up a whole lot of time for people who may have only a limited amount of time every day to devote to making a success of their online business! Think about this:

  • It can take several minutes to read someone's blog post and then a few more to think of a decent comment--say it took someone 10 minutes total.
  • The person does this 3 more times, spending a total of 40 minutes.
  • They've received 4 credits for that amount of time.
  • In return, they use those 4 credits to get 2 comments on their own website.

Now, like a lot of people in WA, this person works full time, and they're lucky to eke out 2 hours a day on their own website. Look at the amount of time they had to take away from their own business in order to get just 2 comments!

As long as they made an effort with their comments and they were relevant to the blog posts, they did what was asked. Considering the time involved and what it takes in order to start receiving a very small amount of money for them, I believe that most people do the best they can and are not just lazy or greedy.

My Recommendations For Site Comments

So here are some things that I think we need to consider when asking for comments:

  1. The minimum word count is 50 words to be accepted as a comment. I don't care if you think 3 paragraphs is what you deserve, I don't have to give you that amount of my time.
  2. If there is an error in punctuation or grammar in my comment and you want to take your time to make it perfect, fine. Don't complain because I didn't see it--after all, I didn't point out the spelling errors that were in your post in my comment--and I see them in a lot of posts!
  3. If I don't understand something about your site or fully comprehend what is being said, I'll ask a question, simply do my best when commenting, or pass on your site. I am NOT going to go Google something or do research in order to know what you're talking about. It's MY job to ensure my readers understand what I'm saying, and the comments I receive is a good way to gauge if I've written a post well. I don't have time to do your job for you if you haven't written or researched it well yourself.
  4. I'm not going to try and figure out what keywords you're going for and write my comment based on them. Again, it's MY responsibility to write my posts optimized for SEO. As a commenter, it's my job to give you a decent comment that is relevant to your post.
  5. If someone who doesn't speak English well makes an effort to comment, be grateful that you can show your readers that your blog appeals to a diverse audience. Respect their effort, don't criticize the fact that they can't speak English fluently.
  6. If you want to rewrite every comment into a 200-300 word admiration fest for your post, go ahead. But the fact that your commenters didn't write that way doesn't mean that their efforts were substandard!
  7. If someone confuses comments with feedback, be sure that you explain it to them when disapproving it so they understand. Mentoring will give better results that criticizing and complaining.
  8. Accept a different point of view in a comment and use any negativity as a way to explain yourself more and connect with your readers in an authentic way. Comments are not only for Google to see engagement, they can show your readers more about who you are!

Lastly, if you are someone whose hard work has given you the ability to work from home and you have the time to write wonderfully detailed, perfect comments--great! Your efforts are appreciated by everyone, and I am very grateful for all of the effort you've put in for my posts!

But remember that there are many who are struggling to find every spare minute they can to create content and learn everything they need to be successful. I happen to be one of them at this moment!

I will do my very best and leave genuine comments, but my business is my first priority for my time in order to live my dream with my family. Respect goes both ways!

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SondraM Premium
Somehow the notifications on a bunch of my emails from WA ended up in SPAM. I am thrilled that I just happened to look and find this post. I am sorry that I didn't see it sooner.

I am/or I was a certified commenter with an 99% approval rating.
I have not had time or desire to comment much this month.

I've written 2 or 3 WA blogs about how thankful I have been for my comments. So, I've been a bit reluctant to write another until a bit more time goes through.

I sincerely appreciate EVERY SINGLE comment that I have ever received via site comments. While I may remove a feedback sentence; I don't think I have ever felt compelled to disapprove a comment.

I recently had a comment from someone that was clearly not an English speaker. I included in my response that I felt honored that a non-English speaker would take the time to try to leave me a comment on my post.

I do try to post articles that I think the average WA member that lives anywhere in the world can comment on. My real estate posts, for instance, that I have that are highly specific to a neighborhood; just has to stay with zero comments.

Even real estate agents in different towns have challenges commenting on those types of posts. If they do it's "Hey....just thought I would say hi. " That is a real world type of comment on a challenging type of post to comment on.

Like you, I think people expect too much from comments they get via site feedback. Comments are not going to propel anyone's website to top Google rankings. Quality content in the actual post does that.

People that always have a hard time getting good comments also need to critically at their writing.

Is there something they are doing wrong that is making it challenging for people to provide good comments?

Grammerly could be a great tool for many people. When something is poorly written, it is exhausting to read. These posts are very difficult to respond to also. English is my native language. I feel sorry for people that are trying to use a translation program to interpret the posts. I wonder if is getting translated into gibberish? That might be causing so many of the problems for our non-English speaking people that are trying their best so comment?


People complaining about comments need to be careful. It makes even those of us, like me that have 99-100% approval ratings less enthused about making time to comment. Lord help me if they don't like my grammar or spelling. Or catch someone in a bad mood.....

Again, I am glad that you shared your positive perspective. I truly believe that most people are trying to do their best when they take the time to comment on websites.
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TeamIceCream Premium
Hi Sondra

Although I don't often use the Google Translator from English into my native language, I have done so a few times just to check what comes out, and yes, it is indeed very low quality - hardly useable. Translation software definitely still need a lot of work before they will provide an acceptable standard.

And you are right - because of this exact reason, I don't leave comments through SiteComments. I only leave comments on people's websites as an organic commenter, because then I can do so if there is substance in the blogpost and it really sparks my interest or I sincerely have something to say or to ask.

Wishing you an awesome day!
Sharlee (Chocolate IceCream)
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SondraM Premium
Sharlee,

That is great that you take the time to leave posts on people's websites as an organic commentor. Those have even more value.

My boyfriend speaks Spanish. I'm constantly amazed at how Google translate can quickly confuse things.
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jlclayton1 Premium
I agree with everything you said! Most people do their best to give a good comment, I believe, and to me they all have value--the good and the bad.

Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a thoughtful response to my post!
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SondraM Premium
Sorry it was so long.

I just think it is so important that we try to appreciate the people that are taking time to comment.
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jlclayton1 Premium
Please don't be sorry! I love your response, and it shows how passionate you are about it--thank you!
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bpais1 Premium
Well, Janelle, although I agree with most of what you said, here's my take:

The majority of commenters are actually trying to do a good job on the SiteComments platform.

But, there are some that think this is the way to make money online and they haphazardly rush through an article without reading or comprehending what is written and STILL throw out a comment - even though it may be nonsensical.

As to your points:

#1 - I totally agree.

#2 - I agree - with reservations. If the comment is totally inundated with numerous spelling or grammar errors - to the point of not being able to even understand the nuance of the comment - it gets a little tiresome having to fix them.

#3 and #4 - Again, I totally agree.

#5 - If someone doesn't speak or write English well, it doesn't mean we should have to value their comment - "just because they made the attempt." I have comments that look like they are using Google Translate to turn their "native language" thoughts into English and they think that is good enough to use in the SiteComments platform.

#6 - I totally agree.

$7 - I agree - with reservations. I think if someone - most likely a newbie - confuses "comments" with "feedback", we should NOT just disapprove their comment "willy nilly" as you suggest. We should PM them, give them a link to Kyle's SiteComments training, and offer them a chance to redeem themselves by editing their comment accordingly.

#8 - I totally agree.

Jim

P.S. By the way - Kyle's SiteComments training is at:
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jlclayton1 Premium
I appreciate very much you taking the time to respond to all my points! That's the great thing about each of us building our own business--we can decide for ourselves what is quality and what we want on our sites.

For me, I don't fix spelling errors, and I don't change a comment from someone who obviously doesn't speak English. If I don't understand exactly what they're trying to say, I respond with something like, "I don't understand exactly what you're saying, ..." and then ask them to clarify or just thank them for taking the time to comment.

Anything that is poorly written in a comment is a reflection of the commenter, and how I respond is a reflection on me and my website. If I'm polite, professional, and friendly with my responses, readers will see that and it's a benefit.

Thank you!
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pasionazul Premium
I think that making many comments will not solve our economic problems. In my case to make 4 comments per day takes me on average around 75 minutes. It does not pay for the effort made, I also have a very good% approval. In the future, I will try to reduce the number of comments made and pay more attention to tasks where you receive better income.
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jlclayton1 Premium
That's how I see it, I need to make sure that my efforts on commenting are good enough and that I leave genuine, relevant comments. But the majority of my time has to be spent on creating content for my business!

Thank you!
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SondraM Premium
I have thought the exact same thing... I too have also reduced my commenting.

I can not understand why people seem to think that people are flying through comments and trying to get rich off of them. Two comments for 50 cents....
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matie2019 Premium
This is not the first time someone wrote about the issues you are bringing up, as a new comer I am learning a lot from your post, thanks for sharing.
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jlclayton1 Premium
You're welcome, and good luck here at WA!
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GlenPalo Premium
Well said, Janelle. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I particularly like your opposing point of view comment and how to handle a negative comment. Accepting and replying to a negative review is more important to other commenters than to the person who made the negative comment.
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jlclayton1 Premium
The first time I had a negative comment, it took me off guard. But I've found that those give a perfect opportunity to show my expertise, explain myself further, or in one case, agree with the poster that they had a great point and thank them!
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jennyjewel Premium
Well said Janelle, I totally agree with you.
Jenny
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jlclayton1 Premium
Thank, Jenny!
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spurway Premium
I also agree with that view. Comments and time are precious, and if you get an organic comment, you have to take what you get. Of course, you have the choice to keep or delete. People have different views, and they see our blog from a different perspective.
Sometimes we also have to reflect on us to understand what other people see and understand in our blog. If you get too many comments you do not like; it might be that the person who wrote the blog did not get the point across to others.
If a person speaks multiple languages and is not using correct English don't complain as you want international visitors to your site, and with that comes the ups and downs accept it.
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jlclayton1 Premium
I totally agree! I think a lot of people assume that their post is always clear and to the point and written well. Unfortunately, their message may not be clear to some readers.

I had a post awhile back that I was disappointed in the comments I got. I took a look at it and realized that there were problems with my article. I had written it in a big hurry, published it, and asked for comments right away. But I didn't take the time to give it a good edit, and it didn't read well, there were spelling errors and even a sentence that was cut off. I'm sure my lack of quality was translated to the readers, who responded the same way.

Thanks for taking the time to comment!
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TeamIceCream Premium
WOW Janelle - that is some insight! Well done on you for taking a hard look and in the words of Millard Bennett saying "I muffed this one all by myself"! Thanks for sharing that, there's a big lesson in it, since I am usually so happy to finish a post that I can't wait to publish it... Hmmm.... slow down Sharlee! ;-) Thanks Janelle, I appreciate this advice and takes it onboard!
Sharlee (Chocolate IceCream)
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jlclayton1 Premium
My dad used to tell me and my sisters that if everybody else was wrong, chances are we might be the ones who are wrong--and that's usually right, lol!
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TeamIceCream Premium
LOL - that is such a true thing your dad said! ;-)
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TeamIceCream Premium
Hi Janelle

I often leave comments when visiting a WA member's website through their profile, yet I hardly ever do so via SiteComments.

One thing that I do notice is that on some websites, the comments look totally artificial and fabricated, (where they don't get many organic comments), since the WA-comments don't represent how organic commenters comment.

Wishing you an awesome day!
Sharlee (Chocolate IceCream)
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jlclayton1 Premium
Thank you so much!

That artificial look is evident a lot of times to me too. While it may look good to Google, the comments also need to look genuine to other readers who are scrolling them for other points of view.

Have an awesome day as well!
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MiaL Premium
Hi,
I do agree. In over 1,200 comments on my site I have only ever disapproved one. Organic comments that I receive (i.,e. not from WA) are generally NEVER 3-4 paragraphs, aren't always written in perfect English, and have a few grammar issues. That's the nature of receiving comments from a global audience. They don't always have to be positive either - that's OK. It gives me an opportunity for further debate or to add additional links, or explain my point of view further. To me that just adds some authenticity.

100% yes.
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jlclayton1 Premium
I agree totally! I want my site to be authentic and for my visitors to feel that the engagement I've received with comments is real. That is what will make our visitors connect with us!
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accad Premium
Yes, I'll give a thumbs up for every point you stressed.
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jlclayton1 Premium
Thank you so much!
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LauraFuller Premium
Awesome. My sentiments exactly. I love it!!!!

Thank you

Laura
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jlclayton1 Premium
Thank you--I had to get it off my chest!
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directJ Premium
I like this!
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jlclayton1 Premium
Thank you so much!
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