Many SEO experts believe that the “social activity” a given website gets is now a ranking factor for Google and other search engines.
This “social activity” are things like: whether a page gets re-tweets, Facebook shares or likes, and whether or not a lot of people are commenting on that page…
If your affiliate site is based on WordPress then you naturally have a pretty good mechanism for comments built in. The only problem is to get people to use it and actually leave a short comment after reading your content.
There are two main sides to attracting more comments.
1. Convincing People to Comment
This is purely about what you say inside your content (near the bottom of your posts). You can, and should, use this space to invite people to start a discussion.
This can be done by asking a simple question or asking for more insights regarding the topic your post is about, and so on.
However, there’s also the second side to increasing blog commenting.
2. Getting Top Comment-related Plugins
Let’s take it from the top with the most important plugin for commenting:
This is a spam protection plugin. It checks the comments your site is getting against the Akismet web service to decide whether they’re spam or not. Very effective plugin.
This plugin replaces your native WordPress commenting system with an improved one by Disqus. Every commenter can register for a profile and have their comments “liked” by others. It’s also much easier for readers to track all of their comments and responses by other people.
This plugin lets you set up a rating system for your posts, pages, and comments. Every reader gets to rate other people’s comments by clicking on the rating stars. A very nice and visual way of distinguishing the best comments.
Not everyone of your commenters will have a Gravatar profile, so they won’t get a nice picture next to their comments. However, if you get this plugin you’ll give your readers the possibility to use their Twitter avatars instead of Gravatar.
This plugin is a little different than all of the other ones on this list. It’s not strictly related to comments, but it can improve your affiliate site as a whole. What it does is it automatically links keywords in your posts and comments with corresponding posts, and pages on your blog. This way you can improve the internal linking structure of your site from within the comments left by other people.
What’s your favorite WordPress plugin when it comes to helping your site get more comments?