Comments. A topic many bloggers stress over.

Let’s face it, receiving comments means we know “for sure” our blog posts are be read (or maybe skimmed), and in some cases, comments are what keeps us motivated to keep going.

But, how to get others to comment on our blogs is something we’re often uncertain of.

Today’s Lesson

Recently a semi-new blogger left a comment on an older post of mine.

To reiterate, this is what Linda of Roses To Rainbows wrote.

I’m glad I stumbled across your blog. I am trying to earn an audience. I have been blogging since September, and thanks to a statcounter, I know a few people are stopping by. To date I have had a total of 3 comments and a couple people responded to my email instead of commenting.

I invite people to comment, and often times ask a question or invite readers to relate a story or experience. I would really [like to] interact with people. My blog is not about any one thing specifically. I have pictures, recipes, coupon & grocery stores savings, musings about what we’ve been up to and links to other places I visit. I’ve tried to make it attractive and interesting, but apparently something is lacking.

I do post on other blogs when I enjoy what I’ve read/seen, have something useful or informative to say or ask a question. I don’t just plop down a comment on every blog just for the sake of “being seen”.

I noticed two things about Linda’s comment. First she said she is trying to EARN an audience, and secondly she says, “I don’t just plop down a comment on every blog just for the sake of “being seen”.”

I like her attitude. She’s not looking for a free ride, nor will she comment just to comment.

When answering her comment, I wanted to share what I’ve learned and in part, said,

I also noticed you commented on an older post. Although I don’t close comments and appreciate any comment I get, what I’ve found is by also commenting on the current post (if it’s something that moves you) the other bloggers who comment may read your comment and click on your link. I can’t guarantee it will drive more traffic to your blog, but it will help to get yourself in front of others as on most blogs the “action” is on the most current post.

That’s one thing I’ve found to be true. Although we may have dozens of articles buried in our archives, unless a reader has subscribed to comments, the comments which are left on older posts usually end up being a conversation between the blog author and the commenter only.

Today’s Assignment

To help Linda (or any new blogger) get more comments, what advice would you give?

Or, do you have the same problem as Linda?

Care to share?

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  1. Jay SchryerNo Gravatar says:

    I know it’s old advice, but it’s really true: the best way to get comments on your blog is by leaving incredibly amusing or insightful comments on other blogs. That way, more people get exposed to your writing, and you have more chances to receive comments.

    It also helps if you have any friends or family willing to help you out in that area. If they will leave a comment (even if it’s just anonymously), then other people are more likely to leave a comment of their own. People don’t like to go first, so if you can get someone to post a comment first, then the rest come easier. With any luck, you have two or three friends that won’t mind getting the conversation started.
    .-= Check out Jay Schryer´s awesome post: What to Eat =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jay,

      That’s true. Leaving amusing or insightful comments on other blogs not only shows others who we are, but may entice those reading to check us out.

      I also agree that some bloggers don’t want to be first to comment. Another thing a blogger can do is post a little update in the comment section, such as “oh, I forgot to mention…”, and that way it might get the comments started, too.

  2. I agree with Jay, that the best way to get is to give. And I like his idea about getting friends or family to leave a comment or two to get the ball rolling. That’s a great idea.

    When you come right down to it, blogging is all about reciprocity. We bloggers can be such special people, eh? (Sorry my Canadian is showing.)
    :)
    .-= Check out Blog Angel a.k.a. Joella´s awesome post: Blog Plagarism – Discourage, Detect & Respond To Content Theft (Part 1/3) =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Joella,

      Yes, reciprocating comments does help to generate more.

      And yes, us bloggers are special people. Your Canadian reminds me of where I was raised in the U.P. of Michigan. We have a lot of the same “slang”. Ya. :)

  3. Barbara,

    Leaving comments on other blogs is, of course, very important. And your advice about commenting on recent posts is excellent.

    Three things that have helped lead to a lot of comments on my blog are DoFollow, KeywordLuv, and CommentLuv. The downside is that they also lead to a lot of spam. My blog has received around 13,000 comments since I started blogging 3 1/2 years ago, but it has received nearly 233,000 spam comments since I moved the blog about 1 1/2 years ago. So in less than half the time, I’ve received something like 18 times as much spam as legitimate comments. It can be a hassle dealing with the spam, but it’s worth it to me because I get loyal readers from people who first come for a DoFollow link.
    .-= Check out Lillie Ammann´s awesome post: Scripture for the Second Wednesday in Lent =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Lillie,

      Thank you for bringing those up – CommentLuv, DoFollow and KeywordLuv. I’ve heard they’re all good for getting others to visit us, however other than CommentLuv, I’m not familiar with how the other two work exactly.

      Re: Spam. I don’t think I get too much more because of CommentLuv, but I do get a lot and I’m thinking it’s because I’ve written about spam comments here.

  4. HilaryNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara .. I was lucky I started with a few others (group of people) setting up blogs .. and realised that other commenters on her blog were worth visiting – albeit I didn’t have a niche. I had my group commenters – though those have mostly fallen away now – after a year – but I have great commenters.

    So – go to the newest post – and leave a salient comment.

    Follow the links from there & comment on other blogs – I was doing 20 or so at the beginning and writing a post everyday – that wasn’t off the top of my head or a subject I was expert in – it was exhausting I have to say .. but I did it – because I wanted to give those fellow newbie bloggers a chance to recipricoate – and they did. However even if they’r not commenting now – they’re still there for me – when I branch out and spread my wings a little.

    You have to comment for a while .. and I don’t plead, I don’t ‘plead’ on my blog, I just ‘wait’ .. I do have urgency – but I can’t do much about that (because of my mother) .. so I go with the flow – I’m always grateful and always answer ever comment.

    I think I’ve been lucky .. but my blog is ‘different’ – so it’s out of the loop of a niche as such (I’d say) – but interesting enough to titillate people to visit, subscribe or follow – and I hate to say I have no idea re numbers .. other than followers – to whom I’m mighty grateful!

    It’s researching, learning, watching what others are up to .. not necessarily the top dogs – certainly from this blog she will learn a lot ..

    I’ll be interested to see what everyone else comes up with ..
    .-= Check out Hilary´s awesome post: The Presidents’ Portraitist and Snuff …. =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Hilary,

      That was a great idea to start blogging at the same time as others you knew. That way you were all there to show support for each other.

      I do agree, to stay on top of all we do as bloggers, plus commenting on other blogs can be exhausting. I like your advice to just “wait”. In time, all we’re hoping for seems to transpire.

  5. HulbertNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Linda, I think I probably mentioned it here or on some other blog, but didn’t get my first comment on my blog until 5 to 6 months into it.

    If you want to get more comments, there are many factors that are important such as who you’re writing to (some people will leave if your posts happens to be over 2000 words), what you’re writing about (some people will leave if you’re writing something that sounds the same as 100 other people out there), and what your website looks like (some people will leave if it’s just a bland website).

    But ultimately, I would suggest that you do need to get out there and participate in conversations with other people, join the communities that are related to your niche, and provide a link back to your beautiful blog. By doing this, you should be able to see more comments on your blog. :)
    .-= Check out Hulbert´s awesome post: My Brother Got Pulled Over by the Police – Part I Interview =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Hubert,

      By the way, I love your new avatar. Looking handsome. :)

      I remember when you shared how you had to wait for 5-6 months before getting a comment. You’re right, for us to get found, we need to get out there and join in other conversations. At first it may feel a little bit intimidating, but as time passes, it will become second nature.

  6. DavinaNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara. I hate to admit it, but generally I agree with Joella. The best way to get comments is to give comments. Especially in the beginning. However it’s important to choose which posts to comment on and offer up more than “Great post!”

    Commenting on posts that interest a blogger, where they have something valid and authentic to contribute to the conversation increases the network because there is good food for thought; a two-sided conversation. Plus, good comments generate discussion among other commenters and invite other commenters to connect.

    I’ve noticed a slight decline in comments because I’ve been spending less time circulating. And unfortunately that’s the way it goes in blogoland. But… over time, as connections are strengthened, I also believe that certain bloggers will continue to visit just because of that connection. It doesn’t have to be “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” all the time.
    .-= Check out Davina´s awesome post: Getting Sensual with Creativity =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Davina,

      I’m glad you brought that up. When we circulate less, we will see our comment count drop. Although it doesn’t have to be tit for tat, sometimes it feels that way. When bloggers get to know each other, they also realize the blogger has a life and can’t spend all of their time in blogosphere, either.

  7. Angelia SimsNo Gravatar says:

    I think with so many blogs out there it’s really hard for someone to just happen by. I found great blogs through other commenters. I have faithful ones I read, so a core group, and I keep up with comment clubs as well. I genuinely read and enjoy every blog I comment on. I enjoy meeting people and getting to know them.

    I discovered a great community here in blogland not just great blogs.

    My advice? Enjoy new connections and see what happens.
    .-= Check out Angelia Sims´s awesome post: Wedding Wordless Wednesday =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Angelia,

      That’s great advice. It is fun to meet others, read their blogs and share our thoughts. Although not everyone will come and visit us, chances are we’ll find some we can identify with.

  8. Alien GhostNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara,

    So far I get very few comments and although it’ll be nice to receive some as feedback and motivation, and considering that my blog is not niche specific, I believe visitors is the most important part for now.

    I can understand when someone stop by, read and then leave without making any comment; I’ve done that many times when reading an interesting post yet don’t have much to say.

    So how important is to receive comments? I think it’ll depend on what kind of blog and niche is the blogger. Some blogs are the kind that requires participation to be alive while others are like books you read and absorb yet responses are not necessary or even considered.

    I think worrying too much about receiving comments soon and without analyzing what kind of blog we have might lead to unnecessary disappointment too early.

    Raul
    .-= Check out Alien Ghost´s awesome post: Technology Is Making Me Dumb =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Raul.

      Good point. Some blogs are not the kind that need comments to grow. Whereas, like you said, comments make other blogs come alive. In fact, I see that with this blog. It’s not so much what I’m posting as it is what those who are commenting are saying. You all add so much value to the post it would be a shame for someone to not read the comments.

      I also like your advice about not worrying about comments too soon in our blogging journey.

  9. TracieNo Gravatar says:

    To paraphrase The Beatles, the comments you take are equal to the comments you make.

    I agree with everyone. I’d add that sometimes it’s best to comment on blogs that don’t have a huge following or receive hundreds of comments. It is easy to get over-looked by a busy blogger but others may return all visits.
    .-= Check out Tracie´s awesome post: I Must Have Been A Very Bad Person In My Former Life =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Tracie,

      Very true. Those who have a huge following often don’t reciprocate comments, but those who are just starting out are apt to check us out, as well.

  10. suzenNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara! I used the info in my trusty old Blogging for Dummies book – it said visit blogs, leave comments of some substance (not just “Nice post”) and hopefully your following will grow. The dummy recipe worked just fine! I have never worried one bit over comments but they did come in handy for helping pare down the insane amount of blogs I was following – I found it easy to walk away from some that I faithfully commented on due to their NO comment ever on mine. But I think it just takes time and consistency to get a following and comments regularly.
    .-= Check out suzen´s awesome post: Looking At My Desk =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Suzen,

      I agree. It does take time to get comments.

      Your comment brings up another good point. We might leave comments on other blogs, but that blogger may not be one who reciprocates. Then it becomes up to us if we want to continue to visit them, or cross them off our list.

      I know I visit some big blogs but I don’t expect to see them here. One thing I do see is, when I do leave a comment on those blogs, I end up getting referral traffic so it’s not all for naught.

  11. Kelvin KaoNo Gravatar says:

    About commenting on new and old posts, I like to use the party analogy. If you are one of the first comments on a new post, it’s like you arrive early at a party. Then you can stay there and have conversations with people that start to arrive too. If you are commenting on an old post, it’s like you come late while people are all gone. But if you don’t mind grabbing a left-over coke and just sit down with the part host and have your own little chat, why not? Just be aware that nobody else is probably going to hear this conversation.
    .-= Check out Kelvin Kao´s awesome post: Why I am No Longer a Gentleman =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Kelvin,

      You put that so eloquently. Thank you! I agree, although the information in older posts can still apply, if someone is looking for conversation with more than the blog author, our chances are slim.

  12. Don’t forget engagement can happen in other venues, too. It seems to me that just as many comments come in from social media as RSS subscribers and search traffic with us. I guess print journalists would call it securing distribution avenues or something.
    .-= Check out Betsy Wuebker´s awesome post: Roaming Through Michigan =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Betsy,

      Thank you for bringing that up. You’re right, if we’re active on more than just blogs, it helps to not only get us found, but our blog, too.

  13. Wilma HamNo Gravatar says:

    Leaving comments on blogs in your niche is important. However as Linda says, my blog is not topic specific, that might be difficult for me as a commenter. If I do find a post I have nothing to comment on because I do not know what to say that will mean no comment from me, even though I visited. I too do not like to leave just a ‘nice post’ comment so I am check mate.
    However a good question as we are all working on this issue, I am sure.
    Love Wilma

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Wilma,

      Yes. Commenting on blogs in our niche can help us get found, but like you said, if a post doesn’t move you, that means no comment. With me, I don’t visit a lot of blogging blogs, but do enjoy reading what you all are sharing. I find it helps to not only expand my knowledge base, but gets me thinking about matters in real life.

  14. elmotNo Gravatar says:

    For me, I also struggled on how to gain comments…but at the end of each post, I realized that it is still all about your own writing, how you write, what you write that friends and strangers will comment or not.

    But one lesson that is so important that I learned is that, though some people may not comment on your post especially your friends, it does not mean that they don’t read your posts, it is just that they don’t to comment.
    .-= Check out elmot´s awesome post: Watch Melai Interview Videos on The Bottomline, Melason on The Buzz =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Elmot,

      That’s very important to remember. There are many who just don’t comment, for whatever reason. But like you said, that doesn’t mean our words are going unread.

  15. jan geronimoNo Gravatar says:

    Be an active participant in your own comment section even if you’ve only a couple of readers at first. Engage with your own readers. Be there for them.

    Some readers just want to say hi or to thank you because you’ve made them smile. Nothing wrong with that. Smile back and give them a reason to visit again.

    Some readers leave comments that are a cry for help. So help them by writing about their concern. If you can’t, then refer them to someone who can.

    Have fun talking with and getting to know your readers now. Enjoy it because the moment you get to have a huge community you’d miss this precious opportunity.

    And visit blogs where your kind of people congregate. Can’t go wrong with Barbara’s blog. This is a nurturing community. You’d feel safe and comfy in the company of new friends.
    .-= Check out jan geronimo´s awesome post: Here’s Why I Unfriended Darren Rowse in Facebook =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Jan,

      Great advice. I had to smile at the part where you said to enjoy the ability to get to know your readers now since when your community grows, those moments may be gone. That’s very true. The larger our communities get, the harder it becomes to visit each blog and to give those who comment all of the attention they may want.

      P.S. Thank you for your kind words. I agree, those who visit and comment here, are kind, gentle and nurturing souls.

  16. I absolutely agree with the majority of the other comments. “I Follow You, You Follow Me”… One must get out and really read lots of other blogs and participate! One of the things that annoys me is the folks who start by commenting each and every day for awhile…til they “become famous” and then drop you like a hot potato!! I hate that!! So, I have many blogs that I’ve been a fan of for a long time and will continue to be close to those bloggers. I have some that I have dropped simply because they have stopped “participating” in my life. You get out of it what you put into it!! Pretty simply I guess!! You, my dear, have a great blog here!!
    .-= Check out Jeanne ~ bermudabluez´s awesome post: Inspiration for the Day =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Thank you Jeanne,

      As I was reading your comment, it reminded me how I no longer get out each and every day to visit those who visit me. It’s not that I don’t want to, but as Jan mentioned, when our communities grow, so do our responsibilities. In fact, that would make a great blog post. Thank you Jeanne for the inspiration. :)

  17. Hi Barbara – I remember when you wrote about comments last year. Since then I’ve started getting more comments, and I’ve also heard from a blogging buddy that I’m sending readers her way. That was a delightful surprise. I don’t know why it’s happened exactly, but as both a blog reader and writer, I have a few thoughts.

    As a reader, I’ve realized that I can’t keep up if bloggers write more than 2 -3 times each week. And if there are a lot of guest posts, I will probably pass by, since if I like a blog it’s because of the writer’s voice.

    As a writer, it’s been helpful for me to have a niche. It keeps me focused, and even though I can cover almost any topic, I always remember that I need to bring it back to my main theme. Ironically, that’s given me freedom to try new things and discover my own unique voice, and I suspect readers like that as well. And I know I’ve said this before, but paying attention to the writing process itself and not worrying about readers/comments in the the beginning helped me tremendously, just as reading the blogs of talented writers/bloggers helped.

    For me, it was overwhelming to go around leaving lots of comments and trolling for visitors. So I found a handful of blogs I loved and made a commitment to comment on them regularly. That helped to develop relationships, and slowly but surely the readers have arrived.
    .-= Check out Patty – Why Not Start Now?´s awesome post: Meaning Mondays: The Experiment Edition =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Patty,

      What you said is so true. We can get overwhelmed by going around leaving comments in hopes of getting found, where instead, like you said if we concentrate on our writing and developing relationships with a handful of bloggers, the rest will follow.

      I was on your blog yesterday and smiled when I saw how large your community has become. Great job Patty!

  18. Sam LiuNo Gravatar says:

    I have the same problem as Linda, I’m relatively new to the Blogosphere and I’m keen to appeal to a wider audience. Sure, there are tips, social media tools and blog directories everywhere that can help you in promoting your blog, and commenting on other people’s work is definitely beneficial, but I’ve found that really getting your blog out there is somewhat more difficult that it may at first appear.

    What really helped me was guest posting on other people’s blog, and I achieved that by socialising within the blogging community. It didn’t get me consummate traffic, but I started with three readers, and, after my guest post on someone else’s blog, I earned another 23.
    .-= Check out Sam Liu´s awesome post: St. Paul’s Cathedral – A Poem =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Sam,

      That’s a fabulous idea. Guest posting puts us in front of those who are already in an established community. Although not everyone will come and visit, it’s a fabulous way to get out name out there and show others our writing talent.

  19. Evelyn LimNo Gravatar says:

    The sincerity in your comments can be very helpful. Writing to the blogger of the other site can also help you get noticed. However, like what some have shared, you may find blog commenting very time consuming after a period. You may enjoy developing the friendships but you also need to pay attention to attracting new traffic.
    .-= Check out Evelyn Lim´s awesome post: How to Win the Lottery or the $10 million Hongbao Draw? =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Evelyn,

      That’s true. Sincerity goes a long way, as does directing our comments to others, as well.

      And yes, commenting can be time consuming and although it’s a good way to attract visitors, like you eluded to, I don’t know if it’s always smart to put all of our eggs in one basket, either.

  20. There are other ways beside commenting on blogs to drive traffic. Be diversified and utilize many ways to increase traffic – for example, social media (twitter/facebook/etc) and making sure your site has good SEO are all helpful.
    .-= Check out Heather Villa´s awesome post: I’ve Joined a Cult! =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Heather,

      I like your idea of utilizing Twitter, Facebook, etc. Those sites may put us in front of more people than just bloggers. I also agree, SEO (search engine optimization) is important, as well. That way our inbound traffic becomes a little more diversified.

  21. Tony SingleNo Gravatar says:

    I find that begging and grovelling usually nets me a gazillion million comments per post! It really really works! It really really really really really really really really really does!

    Okay, I admit that I have no clue how to get comments, but I suspect following the above advice couldn’t hurt any… 😛
    .-= Check out Tony Single´s awesome post: Existential Threads =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re funny Tony,

      And your comment reminds me how humor can attract visitors to our sites. as well; just as you’ve done. Great job! 8)

  22. Mary CraigNo Gravatar says:

    getting your name and website out there in all places…comments on other posts, add your link to your email signature and word of mouth. Then patience. Word will spread!
    Thanks for your blog, I found it in a search and I have enjoyed everything I have read!
    .-= Check out Mary Craig´s awesome post: Giveaway! =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      You’re welcome Mary,

      I like your ideas, too. Using a link to our blogs whenever we can – emails, business cards, etc. The more people who see it, the better chance we have to get found.

  23. I agree with Jay…leave interesting and great comments on other blogs. Mine comments are rarely long. Not because I won’t take the time…because I’m a short and to the point type of person. I’m great with one liners. I’ve experimented with leaving longer comments but they don’t “feel” like the real me.

    I have blogs I leave comments on even thought the author never comments back. Why? Because I love the blogs. Blogging is enjoyable but hard work. My advice is “don’t give up!” Get out and be seen! You get what you give…Ask others how you can help them and do your best to follow through.
    .-= Check out Tess The Bold Life´s awesome post: A Priceless Gift =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Tess,

      That’s true. Our comments should reflect who we are. If we like leaving (good) one liners, then that’s what we should do. Just like our blog posts, our comments should reflect our authentic self.

      Like you, I also LOVE other blogs and blogging. And yes, it is hard work. But well worth it. :)

  24. George AngusNo Gravatar says:

    Engage authentically, thank folks for coming by, moderate any discussions which blossom, write posts that are comment-worthy, give thoughtful replies. Notice the common theme here? Giving

    George
    .-= Check out George Angus´s awesome post: How To Publish Your Ebook On Amazon’s Kindle =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi George,

      That’s true. If we’re not being ourselves, how can we attract like minded people.

      “Giving”. I like that.

  25. LindaNo Gravatar says:

    Wow, I sure was surprised to discover my blog to be the topic of a post here. Thank you all for the advice and tips. Also, thanks to everyone who dropped by Roses to Rainbows.

    I definitely plan to continue blogging and keep reading here. There is so much good material and comments to read through, and links to great blogs to follow.

    Most of the advice has entered around leaving comments, so I am following links and finding some great writing to which I can relate and comment.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Linda,

      It’s been my pleasure to share not only a link to your blog, but to quote you, as well. Like I mentioned in my email, your comment was the inspiration for this post. And as I’m sure you’ve noticed, you are not alone in wanting comments.

      Happy clicking. Happy commenting!

  26. janiceNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with a lot of what’s gone before. By the way, now that I think of it, that’s one of the things I’d advise; let your commenters know that even if they come late to a dialogue because of time zones, their comment will be responded to and appreciated, even if all they say is ” Great post; I agree with what’s gone before.” As a blog host, there’s nothing wrong with saying “Thank you. I agree with you; we do have great comments here, don’t we.” Commenters love connection and to feel like part of a community.

    I’d also recommend asking a few powerful, irresistible questions at the end of every blogpost, or genuinely asking for advice or input. People like to help.

    Something else that works is to sometimes make posts based on extracts from comments you’ve received on your blog, adding the commenter’s link to each extract in the mosaic. Here’s an example of a post like this: http://sharingthejourney.co.uk/quotes/a-patchwork-post-authenticity-quotes-book-giveaway-winners-link-love-and-spiritual-pioneering/ It’s a great win/win way to spread link love and appreciation.
    .-= Check out janice´s awesome post: Writing Snow =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Janice,

      I agree. “People like to help”. Thus, like you said, asking powerful irresistible questions at the end of a post can inspire those who are reading to respond.

      Thank you for sharing the link. That’s a great example of how linking to others can create a win-win.

  27. Lori HoeckNo Gravatar says:

    For me to comment at a blog, I need to feel a connection to the blogger or the information. Some of Linda’s writing is be tied to her local area. Perhaps she can find nearby social media folks and blog writers to engage to develop reciprocal comments and community.
    .-= Check out Lori Hoeck´s awesome post: Mindset in self defense is crucial to victory =-.

    • LindaNo Gravatar says:

      Lori, thank you for your comment. I understand about the connection, and it was my hope to be able to connect with and get feedback from folks in my area, but thus far that hasn’t happened. That’s OK, my “style” is still evolving so who knows where I’ll end up.

      I realize my posts won’t interest everyone, and I don’t try to be all things to all people, but just have a little something for anyone who stops by.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Lori,

      That’s a good observation. When what we share on our blog is “regional”, it would be great if we could find a way to dispense it more easily to those it affects.

      @ Linda. I don’t know if you’re on Twitter, but that’s also a great place to find and connect with others in your region (for those posts which “region based”.)

      And you’re right. No blogger can be all things to all people, but chances are what you share will resonate with some.

  28. SaraNo Gravatar says:

    Barbara and Linda:

    This is a very important subject. I had to learn how blogging worked and spent a long time without any comments to my posts. I started in 2007 and for ages did not have a single comment that wasn’t from a family member or friend:~)

    I think it was coming to Barbara’s site that helped me learn the etiquette of blogging. Here are some of my recommendations:

    Always return a comment. Go to the person’s site and read their posts with an open mind…look for something that you can comment on.

    Make your comments relevant to the post you’re replying to, rather than something like “nice post” if that’s all you say. People want to know how their writing is received to a reader.

    Always reply to a comment on your site. People like to know that your read their comment and replied back. Personally, I think this is one of best parts of blogging. It’s a long-distance conversation with the mail sent via the Universe:~)

    Find sites that resonate with you and your interests and then leave comments. I will keep visiting a site I like and commenting, even if I don’t get a return. I’ve found that sometimes a relationship take time to develop.

    When you find a site you like, check out the readers of that person’s site and see if any of them have similar interests.

    Well, as Barbara knows…I could on and on and on, but I will stop here. I wish you happy blogging. Enjoy the experience…it can be wonderful:~)
    .-= Check out Sara´s awesome post: Romancing the Happy Ending =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Sara,

      Those are all great tips. And I think the most important is to find other sites that resonate with us. Even though some blogs have thriving communities doesn’t mean what’s shared is something we have an interest in. If not, just keep looking.

      Yes. Blogging can be wonderful :)

    • Keith DavisNo Gravatar says:

      Sara
      The techies out there always talk about writing unique and compelling content in order to get comments, but don’t we all try to do that?
      Your suggestions are useful, practical and easy to carry out… add a few more suggestions and you have a complete post
      .-= Check out Keith Davis´s awesome post: Practice, practice, practice… =-.

  29. Keith DavisNo Gravatar says:

    Can’t really give you much advice about how to get comments… I come here for advice on getting comments.

    My ten cents worth:
    1 Become part of the community, comment on articles that interest you and that you have an opinion on.

    2 Make sure that you have the “Subscribe to comments” plugin and the “CommentLuv” plugin. One invites return comments and the other encourages people to comment in the first place.

    3 Don’t make it hard for people to comment by making them sign in!!! Someone left a comment on my site and when I went over to return the favour, I had to sign in……

    No more advice.
    .-= Check out Keith Davis´s awesome post: Practice, practice, practice… =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Keith,

      Thank you for sharing what you’ve learned thus far, however, looking at your blog, it doesn’t appear you’re having any problems getting comments. But… I also see you in blogosphere, making the rounds.

      • Keith DavisNo Gravatar says:

        Hi Barbara
        Thanks for your kind words.
        Have to say that most of what I’ve learnt is via your site and John Hoff’s.
        Relaxed manner and always reply to comments in a polite and humorous way.
        BTW your posts are always interesting and easy to comment on.
        .-= Check out Keith Davis´s awesome post: Practice, practice, practice… =-.

  30. I think for me, my challenge is to post more content that’s worthy of commenting on. When I was more active, I didn’t have a problem getting insightful comments. I was no Leo, but a half dozen comments was enough to make me happy.
    .-= Check out Carla | Green and Chic´s awesome post: My Love of Links – Vol III =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Carla,

      That’s a good point. Not all content will gather comments. Some posts are information only and readers will just come by for the data and leave.

  31. Chris EdgarNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara — I liked the practical advice you shared, and when I read Linda’s comment about wanting to earn an audience I felt a heaviness — the idea of working hard to deserve your readers sounds kind of tiring to me. My sense is that commenters are going to come and go, but you, the author, are the one who’s in it for the long haul. If you want to keep your blog around for a long stretch, I personally would focus most on pleasing yourself with your content.

    • PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

      Chris I like what you shared here – so much of my life has been focused on “earning” “deserving” or “entitled” to be worthy.
      Thank you I appreciated your thoughts
      .-= Check out Patricia´s awesome post: A Divine Listener =-.

  32. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Thank you Chris,

    I never thought of it that way, but I see where you’re coming from. As we all know, gaining comments can take work, but if the “work” we put into getting comments outweighs the joy we get from writing, we need to ask if we’re selling ourselves short.

    Good point, Chris.

  33. Barbara, If I can call you a name, I’d call you the queen of comments. My Gosh. Just one day I haven’t visited your blog and you have 64 comments.

    I’d say I have blog envy. Or comment envy.

    I do OK for a newbie. I’ve getting about 10 – 20 comments per post for now and I think that is FANTASTIC.

    Some of my awesome readers write me letters telling me about their lives.

    THAT IS WHEN I KNOW I’VE MADE IT! To me it is the sharing. We get our visitors to think, share our lives and then react.

    How fun is that? :)

    Julie
    .-= Check out Julie @ jbulie’s blog´s awesome post: Creativity =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Julie,

      Yes. It is fun, isn’t it? :)

      Comment counts can be deceiving. The comment counters also count the blog author’s comments, so in reality, the true number of comments is usually less than what’s showing. That said, like you, I love seeing others sharing their thoughts. I feel it’s the best way for all of to learn – from each other.

  34. PatriciaNo Gravatar says:

    Social Media sites have been helpful in my getting more readers to my blog, but I usually just get comments from my “group”
    I still am having trouble mastering SEO

    I feel that one of my functions in the blog world is to READ blogs, not just skim. That takes a great deal of time each week and I also make it a bit competitive with myself to try and read a certain number per week – this week my goal was 100 but with distractions I have only read 46 as of right now.

    I write too long of comments still…I attempt to connect with the author and add to the conversation. I think I am too long and too personal at times; that is me.

    I sometimes get no comments if I am not commenting even after a couple of years.
    .-= Check out Patricia´s awesome post: A Divine Listener =-.

  35. Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Patricia,

    You’re not alone, SEO can be difficult to master.

    WOW! You set high goals for yourself; reading 100 blogs? I commend you for reading 46 thus far. As much as I also try to visit as many blogs as possible, distractions from the real world and spending time working on my next project take me away from blogosphere.

  36. DannyNo Gravatar says:

    I would say the best way to get people to comment is to comment on other peoples blog consistently, more specifically dofollow blogs who tend to return the favor by visiting and commenting as well as retweeting your blog.
    .-= Check out Danny´s awesome post: Spring Break in Key West Florida =-.

  37. I’ve been blogging since November 2009. It’s only a few months but it feels as if I’ve entered a whole new world. I love reading other people’s blogs and leaving comments. I even found myself mentally preparing a response to a newspaper article the other day thinking I was reading a blog.

    I do get very anxious if one of my blogs only receives a few comments. It’s silly really and I must take on board your wise advice to slow down because it’s not a competition.

    Twitter has helped me to raise the profile of my blog considerably. I’ve tried to build a group of Twitter friends who are also writers or involved in the publishing industry and they are really supportive.

    The down side of all this is that I really should be getting on with my writing right now… but I’m reading and commenting on blogs!
    .-= Check out Rosalind Adam´s awesome post: Me Time =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Rosalind,

      Welcome to blogosphere. It’s great fun, isn’t it?

      You’re reaction is typical. If we get more comments on one post, and then get less on another, inevitably we begin to question what we may have done wrong. I think we can beat ourselves up until the end of time, but with blogging there are too many variables we have no control over.

      I laughed at the part of your comment where you said you were mentally preparing a reply to a newspaper article. :)

  38. HilaryNo Gravatar says:

    Hi Barbara .. I was going to find another post for this question .. but here will probably do .. I often want to add a notation, a comment to one of my own posts done ‘yonks’ ago .. something I wrote last summer for example…
    a) that would be good for the post, add value to it ..
    b) would it add a link benefit for my post?
    c) not writing a whole new bit …
    d) I suppose I could just edit the post – or add a postscript ..

    Have you ever been asked anything like this before?

    Thank you – hope you’re completely recovered now?
    .-= Check out Hilary´s awesome post: Alpha, Treacle, Beta, Dogger, Snow – what do they mean to you? =-.

    • Barbara SwaffordNo Gravatar says:

      Hi Hilary,

      I tried to answer your question on the “Slow Down” post. I hope what I’ve shared makes sense. If not, email me and we can discuss it further.

      P.S. Yes. I’m feeling 100% now. Thank you for asking.

  39. DotNo Gravatar says:

    It looks like the best way to get comments is to ask how to get commnts! So many here!

    I disagree that leaving comments gets comments. Leaving comments gets traffic, reminds people that you’re still akuve, and let’s them know their blog interests you, so they should notice you. I’m not convinced it gets comments, but it sounds like both traffic and comments are issues for this new blogger.

    What gets comments for me is leaving something for the readers to say (not saying it all) or react to. I raise a topic sometimes, give my opinion and ask what others think. Also, my readers make it clear when something doesn’t interest them — rather than write something negative, they’re silent. So I try to write about things that interest me AND them.

    Having visited this blog briefly, I found that there was a lot of narration and factual details — first we did this, and then we ate that, etc. — rather than emotion and opinion. This doesn’t seem to be something that would interest the general public on a broad scale — perhaps just family — which is fine, if that’s what she prefers to blog about, but I think her audience might be rather narrow on such topics.

    A broader approach, such as, “Have you ever eaten at McDonald’s on a rainy day? Then you know how we felt when we stumbled in, wet and hungry…” and focusing on you, the reader, instead of I, the writer, might draw more people in.

    I wondered what kind of comment one could make on those narrative details, anyway. “Nice choice of entree,” for instance? I’m not trying to be mean, just giving my honest reaction in hopes that it’s helpful, even if a bit blunt. If, on the other hand, she said, for example, “Burger King’s burgers SUCK and here’s why,” I would think she would get lots of comments. People don’t much discuss facts, but they love to discuss opinions.

    Not the case for this blogger, but in regard to comments in genearl, for me personally when bloggers *tell* me to “write a story” or answer their questions (as opposed to just commenting), I want to say, I have enough trouble coming up with ideas for my blog — now you want me to create some content for you, too? I prefer to have something suggested to me, not told. But then, that’s just me, and I’m ornery. 😉

  40. RyanNo Gravatar says:

    Very interesting article, and the comments were great to read as well!

    In my mind, there’s several things that will result in more comments. Commenting on other blogs, and using a plugin such as CommentLuv is very helpful. I’ve found, if you come across blogs in a similar niche or category as yours, leaving a comment there often results in at least the other dropping by your blog as well.

    Depending on your audience, they might not be as tech savvy as you give them credit for. Make sure it’s nice and easy for them to leave a comment! Perhaps put a sentence that describes it. For example: Leave a comment using the form below. No signup needed, and I’d love to hear your thoughts”.

    When people DO comment on your blog, respond to them and keep the conversation going. Also, if they have a blog themselves, drop by theirs and start some conversation in their comments!

    When it comes down to it, even if you aren’t getting as many comments as you’d like, you’re still getting hits and people reading. Give it time, keep trying, and eventually it will pay off!
    .-= Check out Ryan´s awesome post: Mt. Baldy California – Photography =-.

  41. TimothyNo Gravatar says:

    When I saw the title of this post i had to laugh. I felt I had to comment, just because you needed a comment even though there are already a bunch here.. However, I do know how you feel. The more comments you get, the more you feel you are being heard.