Let’s Talk: Improving Your Blog Commenting Game

lets-talk-improving-your-blog-commenting-game

I’m the first to admit that sometimes, my blog commenting game can be quite poor. My replies can be late … but even with all that, one truth I can’t deny: commenting is a huge part of my blogging routine.

To clarify, when I speak about commenting in this post, I’m really talking about everything to do with blog comments: getting them on your own blog, replying to those comments, leaving them on other people’s blogs, etc… basically all things to do with comments on blogs. 💻

Now, a question that I’ve heard thrown around the blogsophere is this: is commenting necessary? And it’s a fair question too — blogging already takes so much time, and commenting, with a gazillion blogs out there, only adds to that time. Is it really, like really necessary?

do-your-thing-girl-nick-new-girl-gifI’m going to go against the grain here and say that the answer is no. When you blog for a hobby, I like to think that nothing is really necessary, and you just do what works for you. Don’t feel like posting this week? Then don’t. Don’t want to write a review for a certain book? Don’t. Don’t feel like commenting? You guessed it: don’t. 💁

The only thing to remember is that every action (or inaction) has a consequence. When you don’t comment, you lose the chance to make that connection with other bloggers on that very platform that you’ve probably spent hours on. You might interact with them through a different platform (i.e. Twitter), but for me, my time, energy and attention are rather limited that I can really only focus on this one thing, at least for the moment.

It all depends on what you’re looking for. Maybe you’re looking to share your thoughts on books and other topics and don’t particularly care what other people think. Maybe all you want is to raise your followers count and get more views. Maybe you seek to connect with other readers who love the same books that you do. Whatever you wish to gain from blogging, sometimes these little things are what contributes and makes the difference. 🙏

yeah-baby-joey-gifWith that out of the way, though, I’ll say this for myself: interaction with the community is both the main thing that I seek from my blog and my favourite ‘metric’ to measure, so I’m always grateful that commenting is something that I’ve included in my blogging routine. Receiving, leaving, replying to comments… they’ve all led to some of the best moments I’ve ever had on this blog and some of the best bloggers I’ve met.

So! Here are some of the things that I’ve learned about blog comments. 💗

1) Not all comments deserve an equal response.

While I’d love to talk to everyone and give each comment equal effort, sometimes I just don’t have the space or energy. Because of that, there’s something to be said about reading the comment you’ve been left and adjusting the effort you put into answering it. 💬

I don’t mean to sound so ‘eye for an eye’ because this is definitely not like that at all, but in general, if someone has put in the effort to write me a really insightful, thought-provoking comment, I’d try to reply with equal effort, and if someone has left me a generic “Great post! Thanks for sharing!” comment, I’d reply with an equally generic “Thanks for reading!”.

I suppose this is the lesser “do unto others” adage (i.e. “do unto others as others have done onto you” instead of “do unto others as you would have them do unto you”) but personally, this has saved me valuable time. And it is, of course, very case-by-case.

2) Always, always read the post first.

sheldon-big-bang-thats-how-its-done-gifOf course you’re not going to be quizzed on what you just read, but it’s still good form to know what the blogger is talking about when you’re leaving a comment. 🙌

A three-star rating can mean “this is a book I will recommend” and “this book disappointed me terribly, but objectively it’s not bad” for the same blogger, sometimes even in the same post! You don’t want to be saying things like “I’m so glad you loved this book!” when they’ve never said such a thing in their own post. Basically: know what you’re talking about.

3) When in doubt, ask questions.

I’ve had some bloggers tell me that though they’d really like to comment, they very often don’t know what to say. For me, this is a bit of a two-fold thing: you don’t have to comment if you have nothing to say… but if you want to say something but don’t know what, asking questions is always a good way to open up a discussion. 🎉

Have they read the sequels yet? Have they read <insert similar book>? What do they think of <insert character>? What about that moment when <insert crazy thing> happened? If you’re genuinely interested in what the other person has to say, they’ll know.

4) Bring in your own thoughts and experience.

Hated the book? Liked the book, but disliked a part that they liked? Haven’t read the book yet, but the review makes you want to (or not)? Then say so — we’re all different people with different perspectives, and we all bring something different to the table.

When it comes to discussion posts, I find this point even easier. Was a section particularly relatable to you? Did the post perhaps remind you of a similar struggle or achievement that you have? Share these. I love to hear from you guys and I can guarantee that most bloggers do as well. 😊


Now, let’s talk! 🌿

  • How important are blog comments to you?
  • What tips do you have for people who find commenting difficult?
  • What kind of comments do you most look forward to?

This post is part of Blogger’s Corner, a section of my blog that discusses all things blogging. 🌟

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153 thoughts on “Let’s Talk: Improving Your Blog Commenting Game

  1. I really love commenting and getting comment and I always wish I have more time to do all that hahaha but sadly life takes so much time already and sometimes we have to put this off in order to make room for more pressing things 😂 I agree with the equal response though! Whenever someone leaves a long and thoughtful comment I always try to write an equally thoughtful reply. I know it takes time and a high level of enthusiasm to come up with a comment that long and it’s not a nice feeling to get a quick, generic reply. This happened to me before. I left a long comment on someone’s blog and this person just replied with ‘yeah I agree, thanks for reading’…. it’s like they didn’t even bother reading my comment and if they didn’t then what’s the point of writing a discussion post? Anyway I stopped reading that blog after this happened several times hahaha also yeeeess discussion post always sparks more discussion, hence the comments are almost always longer and more substantial. Great post, Reg! ❤

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    • Yeees, I understand completely that feeling! I try not to be so petty but I feel somewhat neglected (for lack of a better word) when I leave a looong comment on someone’s post intending to discuss things and they’re just like “Thanks for reading!”. I mean, I understand we’re all busy people and all but if it happens often with the same blogger I usually end up unfollowing bc it seems like we don’t necessarily “align” that way. 😛

      Thanks, Puput!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “The only thing to remember is that every action (or inaction) has a consequence.” << I love this! This is definitely something to live by.

    I think commenting is important for a newbie blogger, otherwise it's hard to get your blog and brand out there. So interacting with the community and being included is huge in that respect. But then I also agree that you shouldn't feel like it's necessary. Blogging is time consuming, so blogging and then also having to comment on everyone's blogs is a looooot of time to use.

    I love the thought of replying to comments using the same enthusiasm the original comment had. I imagine that would save you so much more time.

    For me I love commenting on discussion posts, but when it comes to reviews or memes I tend to just not comment. Unless the review is on a book that I have a strong opinion about and I can add to what the reviewer has already said. I never like to leave comments that are shallow and don't add to the conversation.

    Awesome post Reg!

    Jordon @ Simply Adrift

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    • I’m with you! It’s definitely case-by-case, but I’ve always found it easier to connect with bloggers who make it easy for you to connect with them, whether that’s by leaving a comment that’s more… reply-able (for lack of a better word), or just their general enthusiasm. For me, discussions are much more comment-able but I also like leaving comments on reviews and tags. Sometimes it’s just to show my support for the blogger, but hopefully most of the time my comments add at least a bit of something to the discussion or bring a smile to the blogger’s face. 🙂

      Anyway, thanks so much, Jordon! Sorry for the late reply – somehow this got caught in my spam box.

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  3. Wow, look at all the comments you got from the comment post! Lol! It makes total sense to me!
    I try to make meaningful comments but sometimes on things like tags and TBR updates, I may not have much to say. Sometimes I skim reviews bc the book is one I want to read and I once (recently) read a review from a friend of mine who gave away the “who done it” in the book WITHOUT SPOILER WARNINGS! I was so ticked. So I try to be a little more careful on reading reviews of books I have yet to read and still want to.
    Now, when it comes to comments on my posts, I answer every one. Yes, the responses are different and vary, but I think it means a lot when someone takes the time to say something. I love seeing comments on my posts. I’ve been told that reviews are the least popular type of posts and as you prob have figured out by now, it’s pretty much all I have time to post. So when I get 50 comments on a review post, I’m over the moon!
    I got really overwhelmed lately bc every time someone posts, I get an email. And I had 1400 emails. I’ve gotten it down to under 500 now, but I’m going to have to figure out a new way to read blog posts. People tell me Bloglovin is good and I am on there, or some people use the WP reader. What do you do? I don’t want to subscribe anymore via email bc I just can’t take it anymore!! 😂🤣 I’m losing my mind.
    I need to get one of those buttons that say “I comment back” that I’ve seen floating around on blogs, lol.
    (Also, my WP app seems not to give me all the responses or only saves so many…I hate missing comments! That’s the worst feeling).
    Sorry about the rant: you hit me right when I was thinking and doing the very thing you mentioned here…I was commenting to let ppl know that I care about them and what they have to say. Especially when they take the time to come to my blog and share their thoughts! Like you! 😘😘😘

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    • LOL and look at how terrible I am at replying to these comments in a timely manner. 😂

      And oh no! Getting spoiled accidentally is the worst, and I can’t blame you for skimming in those cases. And as a review writer… sometimes what you think isn’t a spoiler counts as a spoiler for someone else, so I can see why it’d be hard to toe that line. Hopefully it doesn’t happen that often for you. Reviews are probably my least popular posts as well but it kind of makes sense to me – not every book will appeal to everybody, and not everyone actually reads reviews (despite writing them), so… it’s just natural they get less engagement.

      I feel like I’ve said it before but I think it’s CRAZY (in a good way, like omg how dedicated you are) that you actually go through all your emails! I just Mark All As Read because I can’t be bothered, haha. Personally I’ve given up using my emails and just scroll through my WP feed and Bloglovin’ to see what others have posted, but I must admit that I’ve long stopped reading EVERY single post from EVERY single blogger every day… it just takes too much effort.

      OMG, this reply is ridiculously long and I’m so sorry! Thank you for the thoughtful comment, and no worries about the rant. Totally get it. 💕

      Liked by 1 person

      • I loved the rant!
        I used to read every post from every blogger and I got too behind in my email. This last weekend (not the one now but last week) I went through ALL OF IT. ALL 1400 of them. I started realizing that it was ok to delete the ones I didn’t want to read bc I would eventually find another post I would want to read by the same blogger. There might be one or two that I’ve fallen behind on if they consistently post stuff I don’t want to read, and there are some new followers I haven’t added yet to the email notifications, but for the most part I get to comment on a lot now. It’s so much easier.
        I almost had panic attacks before when I looked at the amount of email I had waiting, and I felt it my duty to at least like every post if I didn’t comment. But I have loosened up. Especially since I have realized that though I have almost 2,000 followers, I’m only getting comments and likes from .025% of them! That’s less than one percent of my followers! If I’m going to make the effort, you should too. So those people I didn’t unfollow, but I selected to no longer get notifications from them. I mean, I would comment and they would sometimes reply, but most of the time I would initiate contact and not the other way around.
        If you are just blogging for followers, I’m the wrong person to follow. I’ll follow if we share a love of books. I’ll follow if you comment a lot or like often. But I won’t follow if you have a “food/life/fashion” blog and you post constantly about needing followers or how awesome you are. Over it.
        I guess I’ve become a little seasoned, like you! Haven’t even been blogging a year and I feel like I have been doing it forever. And I’ve met some great people. And those friendships have spread to Twitter, and that makes me happy! I really am glad you were one of my earlier followers and I remember being so intimidated bc your pics were amazing and your blog was so professional. Now we can talk and I don’t think, “she’s going to think I’m a stupid newbie who doesn’t know what she’s saying!” 😂😂😂
        I’m so glad you wrote this, though. Came right from the heart ❤️.

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        • I’m glad to hear that you’ve worked out some sort of a system! 1400 emails is really just A LOT – I think anything more than 50 would freak me out (though I don’t use email notifications from WordPress).

          Also yay for 2,000 followers! That’s definitely a lot, especially in the short (ish?) time that I feel like you’ve been blogging. I agree with you, though – I feel like I’m getting more followers but not an equal increase in engagement, if that makes sense. Before it would make me worry that I’m just not doing as well with my posts, but then I’ve decided to really just use this as a creative outlet, so I’ve also loosened up. 😛

          Thank you so much for being kind! And noooo, I would never think that about anyone, haha. We were all newbies once and sometimes newbies have a fresher perspective so they’re always worth talking to. 😉

          Liked by 1 person

          • Wow! This comment…a lot has changed since then. Now I have regular email! Yay! Whenever I get to over 10 I start checking and chucking, as I will comment on some and delete others. It took awhile but I got through the massive hoard and as long as I stay on top of them, they don’t get out of control anymore. I unsubscribed (but still follow) some bloggers that didn’t post anything I wanted to read or never comment back, as there are too many that deserve my attention. It’s been much better and less stressful (no need to say you’re on the list of people who I get email alerts about when they post).
            Thank you about the followers. I feel very fortunate and when I was being congratulated, I ended up losing a friend. She actually commented on my tweet and said, “Congrats but your follower count is less bc blah blah blah” and I was done. I was tired of her negativity and her need to “correct” me when I was publicly celebrating. It was embarrassing and not the first time. Recently I see she made a comment to a male blogger friend of mine that he seems to “only get pics taken with female bloggers.” She’s all about the numbers and being right and the best. I’m going to miss her, but my life has already been less stressful without her around. My first time ever having to eliminate a blogger friend for passive aggressive behavior and competitiveness. I hope it doesn’t happen to you.

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            • Yay for regular amounts of email! That must be a bit of a relief, haha. And thank you so much for including me on that list – you didn’t have to (obviously) so I’m super honoured, especially when you’ve got so many other bloggers to follow already. ❤

              Oh no, I'm so sorry about that tweet thing. I don't really know how to count followers (of other people's blogs) and all that but surely she could've at least raised the issue privately. At least that way it's more… appropriate, perhaps? I'm not sure what the right word is here, but I hope you get my drift. I hope that's all taken care of! I don't know if it has happened to me or if I even know the blogger you're talking about – thankfully I've been very lucky (or very much not active, haha) so I tend to miss these things. 😛

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  4. This is a FANTASTIC post. And so relevant to me right now. My commenting game has been garbage over the past few weeks due to an insane school schedule. Heck, even my blogging game has been trash in general. I haven’t been putting up many posts and I haven’t been commenting because i hadn’t been looking at WordPress for a couple of weeks and I feel so bad. It’s like I just straight up disappeared and now I’m slowly working my way back, trying to remind everyone I’m still here and ready to support them. You’re right. Every action has a consequence. And I miss the interactions I have with other bloggers. Sometimes a comment can turn into a full blown conversation I really enjoy.

    Long comments are my favorite because they let me know someone has really read my post and that they have many things they would like to say in response to it! I know commenting can be a lot of work and sometimes it’s okay to leave shorter comments to conserve energy, but I think leaving a comment (no matter the length) and responding to one is always a great way to show your support for your fellow bloggers! And I have to admit that it kind of depresses me when I leave a really long comment only to receive a very succinct, impersonal message in response. But that’s all right. I understand many bloggers just don’t have the time to answer every single long comment 🙂 I’m guilty of doing the same exact thing sometimes!

    Love, love, love, this post Reg! ❤

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    • Thank you so much, Azia! It’s totally understandable if you haven’t been blogging/commenting much when real life is acting crazy – I mean, that’s just the way it is, and we’ve all been there. I really don’t think there’s any need to feel bad, tbh; I’m sure everyone understands that real life takes precedence above all, and books, while so wonderful, are just one part of your life. 💕

      But yeees, I love long comments as well (though I can be terrible at replying to them like right now!). I’m grateful for ALL comments, obviously, but it’s usually the long ones where ~discussion~ starts to really happen, in my experience. And pssst, it makes me feel somewhat sad too if I write out something really long and thoughtful and only get a sparse comment in reply EVERY TIME, but like you said, we’ve all been there and sometimes it can’t be helped. 😅

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ah thanks for the reminder! 😀 Needed to hear that ❤
        Don't worry! Even though I love those long comments, I can be pretty terrible at responding to them too haha. But at least I've managed to carry on some great discussions, which I'm always grateful for! LOL, glad to know I'm not the only one haha. But that's all right. We get it. We've all been there before. Thanks again for sharing, Reg! ❤

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  5. I am terrible at commenting on other posts but I’m really trying to step it up and do commenting sprints. Loved this discussion, especially about the part of “When in doubt, ask questions.” I always feel like my comments are so bland like “Oh this books sounds awesome, or What a great review!” Although they are true comments I also want to talk to the reviewer sometimes but don’t really know how to start that. 🙂 Thanks for the tips!

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    • I think that’s a good thing to strive for. I’ve been kind of bad with commenting as well, but I hope to be better this month (although I say that every month and just get overwhelmed – sometimes real life just doesn’t let up!).

      No worries! I hope it helps somewhat. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I admit that people who don’t read my posts are a pet peeve of mine. It’s really obvious that some people only read the title of my post, assume I am arguing something I am not arguing at all, and then leave a comment to make it look like they interacted with me. I understand everyone is busy but perhaps a quick skim that included the introduction and conclusion of my post would be useful? This type of comment makes me feel like my replying to the person is a waste of time because they’re clearly not really interested in the topic and if they didn’t read the post, how can I know they’re going to read my reply?

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    • I completely agree. I try to be more understanding simply because I’m SURE I’ve made similar mistakes before (i.e. if I open like several different tabs at once and get confused as to which post is which), but it does bug me when it happens time and time and time again by the same people. I suppose I should be grateful because commenting IS effort regardless, but… still. You definitely make a good point re: not knowing if they’re going to read your reply because they’re not that interested in your post. 😛

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      • Well, yes, I didn’t want to seem like I was calling people out, but it’s typically the same commenters who obviously aren’t reading my posts. Sometimes I look forward to it like, “Hm, I wonder what they will assume I said today!” I try to find it amusing because, honestly, I’m not sure if they are making an effort to interact or if they’re doing the quid pro quo thing and expect me to visit their blog in return because they’ve left me a comment that assumes I’ve said the literal opposite of what I really said….

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        • I totally understand! I imagine many of those commenters are probably their for the follows/views on their own blog – which, to be honest, fair enough but you really can’t expect ~everyone to want to visit your blog if you’re not really “contributing” anything of real value to those people…

          Liked by 1 person

  7. I love commenting, but I have found I can’t write my posts and visit blogs on the same day, or I spend the entire time on the laptop and life gets ignored! So on days when I have to write and schedule posts, I am less active on other blogs, unless I have a total free day.
    I think it is very important to reply to all comments you receive, big or small, because that’s what makes a post fun and interesting. I don’t just want to talk to myself anymore. When I started blogging I was convinced I’d never interest other people so I had intended on just focusing on my writing, but since then I’ve met so many awesome people and commenting, interacting with them makes blogging so much better. I feel guilty on days when I can’t comment and for posts I miss. I just came back from a three-day holiday after the Orenda Month on my blog because it was very intense and I needed a break, now I am trying to catch up with comments on my blog and visiting blogs, but hell it’s taking so long I doubt I’ll make it happen!
    Also, DO ALWAYS READ THE POSTS BEFORE COMMENTING. I have seen inappropriate or irelevant comments under very fascinating posts, and it’s just silly.

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  8. Commenting absolutely makes my day. It doesn’t matter if it’s someone replying on Twitter or a comment on my blog, knowing someone has read (and even enjoyed) my work makes me so happy. So of course I try to do the same and leave thoughtful comments on other blogs. I agree, pulling out some aspect of the post I find particularly relatable and commenting on that.
    Michelle @ The Unfinished Bookshelf

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