Ever feel like you’re blogging into thin air?
Pouring your self into your blog and consistently not getting any comments can get very discouraging.
But don’t worry. You’re not alone, and there are (easy) things you can do to help.
First off, if your site is barely getting any visitors there is of course no way you’re going to get any comments (unless they’re from your mother). Solving that outside the scope of this or any single blog post (but my article on How to Get More Traffic to Your Blog is a pretty good start). So let’s assume you have a decent amount of traffic and a reasonable expectation to get at least one comment here and there.
1. Write Remarkable Content
This may sound obvious, but let’s be clear – not all good content is remarkable content.
Certainly, in order to stand out among the 2 million blog posts published every day, you need to write good quality posts. But unless your content really stands out in a unique way, nobody is going to spend the time to read it, let alone comment on it.
Writing remarkable content is often detailed and long, but it doesn’t have to be. Only use as many words as it takes to get your point across. However, the words you use need to have some edge.
Remarkable content is:
- Highly targeted
Get ready, because this one simple tip could change everything:
2. Ask for Comments and Tell Them What to Write!
The #1 way to get more blog comments is to ask for comments and tell them what to write!
It’s one of the first laws of usability and conversion rate optimization — tell people what you want them to do and they’re more likely to do it.
There are three main ways to do this:
1. Ask for Comments at the End of Each Post
If you end each post asking your readers to leave a comment and giving a specific request of what you want them to say, people are much more likely to leave a comment.
Many people try to do this, and end with something like “Enjoy This Post? Leave a Comment”. That’s a start, but look — people are lazy and in a rush. Many people browse the web fully in Consumption Mode, and you need to give them a hand to switch them into Thinking and Reacting Mode.
Link the question to the comments section (the URL is just “#comment” in WordPress) to make it even more actionable. Also, there are often different widgets (like and author box, related posts, etc) between the end of a post and the comments section, and this brings them all together. See how I do this below…
2. Ask for Comments on Social Media
When you share your posts on social media, repeat your request for specific comments. You’ll probably get more comments inside of Facebook itself, than people will come to your site to comment, but that’s very good too!
3. Ask for Comments by Email
You can also ask for your email subscribers to comment on your posts, by replying to the email and/or leaving a comment on the site.
Was this a face-palm moment for you? Share this post with your friends so they don’t miss out.
Then, go give it a shot now – add a specific request for comments at the end of your latest blog post, share it on Facebook and by email with a specific request for comments, and see the results fly in.
How the Pros Get 100+ Comments
Two of my favorite marketing bloggers who do this to great success are Neil Patel at QuickSprout.com and Derek Halpern of SocialTriggers.com — They both often get over 100 comments on each post, and they ALWAYS end each post with a request for comments on a specific subject.
Firstly, and most importantly, they both excel at my first tip – creating remarkable content. Neil writes data-driven 2,000+ word posts and often spends 10s of thousands of dollars on creating expert guides. Derek is the master of driving action inside a blog. He asks for comments, retweets, social shares and for people to email their friends, all in one post. And he pulls it off, because he embeds the requests while asking if people got value from his posts and suggesting how their friends can benefit too.
But these guys have over 100,000 blog subscribers! What about us little fish?
It works for small and even brand new blogs too.
Double Digit Comments on a Brand New Blog
One example, on a brand new blog is my post 10 Ways to Make Life a Celebration for the Art of Living. The post has 9 comments (including my replies) at the time of this writing and months later, is still the only post on this new blog to get more than 1 comment. What’s the trick? I left it open-ended, only giving 9 Ways, and asking people to fill in the blank!
9 Times More Comments Than Average
Another great example of this is our client Emma Seppala Ph.D’s post Benefits of Meditation: 10 Science-Based Reasons To Start Meditating Today INFOGRAPHIC — I wrote and added a question at the end for her that says, “Do you meditate? Please comment below saying why or why not.” and made it a H3 tag so it stood out.
The post has 15 comments at the time of this post, vs her average 0 or 1. Yes, 6 of these are Emma’s replies, but still, 9 comments is about 9 times more comments than most of her other posts.
Even her #2 and #3 most popular posts which are also both infographics and each have over 10,000 views… both have 0 comments (she hasn’t implemented my recommendation yet). The difference is asking for comments.
3. Notify People About Follow-Up Comments
There are many WordPress comment platforms out there. I have experimented with Facebook Comments, Disqus Comments and Jetpack comments, which all allow an important function that default WordPress Comments lack — they add the ability for the commenter to get an email notification when someone replies to them.
This is very important if you want to cultivate real discussions on your blog. Otherwise, you’re leaving it up to your busy visitors to check back on your post hoping for a reply.
Jetpack makes this feature most user-friendly by adding a checkbox for “Notify me of follow-up comments by email.” This way, the user can choose this on a per-comment basis. Jetpack also includes an option for the user to subscribe to your other posts, which is an easy way to set up blog to email syndication.
For Disqus, it’s a setting in your Disqus account on all your comments. Most people will never think to change this, which could be a good or bad thing, as they’ll get all comment replies, but might start filtering them out if they get too many they don’t want.
When using Facebook Comments, users will receive a notification inside Facebook instead of by email, when other users reply to their comments. Clicking on the notification will take the user back to the web page where the comment originated, driving more traffic back to your site.