Just How Useful is Comment Luv for Bloggers?

16 March 2011
At last, I've successfully installed the Comment Luv plug-in to Teecup Limited! The plug-in is not one of those fancy but useless widgets used to prettify (and add clutter to) your site. It's rather a handy tool a sociable blogger would like. Just how useful is Comment Luv for bloggers?

Blogging Advantage 

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As a blog site owner, you entice readers to comment on your posts. Why? By default, the tool automatically pulls the latest entry from the RSS feed and appends the title to the comment.  Your readers' motivation to post translates to traffic for your blog!

Tip: There's an option to select which of your 5 most recent posts to go with your comment. Simply click the semi-transparent arrow that appears beside the RSS feed to make the selection.

Comment Luv also makes a wonderful scout for blog site owners who want to go blog hopping. How? The plug-in gives you a preview of the comment maker's blog without requiring you to actually visit the site. You can then decide which blog to visit and which one to skip based on how well the title piques your curiosity . 

Deep Linking

You benefit in the same way when you go blog hopping and when you leave your comments on Comment Luv-enabled posts. The tool makes deep linking a tad easier on your part. This is because the links you leave lead back to a specific page of your blog post and not to the home page.

According to the Search Engine Journal, deep linking benefits your blog in a number of ways:

  • It minimizes your bounce rate. After reading the deep-linked page, your visitor will most likely want to check out your home page (at least). The pattern increases the time that your audience stays on your site as well as the number of page views on your blog.

  • It baits the spiders (no, not the arachnids, dear) into digging deeper into your site. Visits on your home page may be a touch-and-go affair, but by linking to other relevant pages, you allow the bots to discover key phrases and anchor text used to describe and rank your blog better.

  • It makes more of your pages visible on search engine results. This increase in clout likewise allows you to strengthen your claim on your original posts and helps to discourage content scrapers from lifting your content verbatim.

Installing the Plug-In

The plug-in is offered by the Comment Luv network, which has just entered into a chummy relationship with IntenseDebate. There are two options you can choose from: install a widget or tweak your template. 

The widget installation process is very quick but the plug-in will slow down the load time of your blog. On the other hand, the HTML tweaking procedure can be a bit cumbersome but  it's all worth it when you know that your blog's load time will stay in tip-top speed.

I won't repeat the instructions here, as the site offers an excellent walk-through of how you can enable Comment Luv on your blog posts. Here's an overview though of what you need to do in order to install the plug-in:

  1. Create an account with Comment Luv.
  2. Register and claim your blog site with the network.
  3. Create an account with WordPress or IntenseDebate. You will need either one to activate the plug-in.
  4. Log on to your blog site.
  5. Without closing the other windows, go back to the Comment Luv Network and download the plug-in. 
  6. Select your desired platform from the Download dropdown: Blogger, WordPress or TwitterLink
  7. Visit the Intense Debate site to activate the plug-in.
  8. Save the changes.

Known Issues and Fixes

Really Simple Syndication. Because the tool assumes that all bloggers have RSS feeds, the comment box may appear welcoming to novices and blog site owners whose blogs do not have RSS. This does not mean though that only commenters with the RSS advantage can leave a message. The lack of an RSS feed simply takes away the commenter's chance to do some serious deep linking. 

Comment Moderation and Spam Filter. By default, all comments do not require moderation, while messages containing 2 or more links will be reviewed. The quick fix is available at Intense Debate's moderation settings. You can enable Akismet spam filter or approve all messages prior to publication.

Link Juice. Please be aware that enabling the plug-in shares your link juice with the approved commenter's blog site. Spammers could take advantage of this loophole to steal your page rank power, some bloggers warned. You might want to monitor comments and delete those you deem fishy and (link juice) thirsty.

Feedburner. In September last year, Charles of Syntactable blogged that Feedburner might be stealing  precious link juice from Comment Luv. To make sure that your back linking efforts don't go to waste,  do the following:

  1. Log on to your Feedburner account.
  2. Click "Configure Stats."
  3. Unclick "Item link clicks."
  4. Save the changes.

More and more blog sites have enabled Comment Luv to their posts, and Teecup Limited is joining the band wagon! Just how useful is Comment Luv for bloggers? You tell me : ) I'll keep you posted in the coming months... Tomorrow, I promise to stay on topic and revert to the work-from-home niche.

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