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The Power of Commenting on Blogs

Posted By Darren Rowse 4th of November 2007 Blog Promotion 0 Comments

I just came across a nice post by Caroline Middlebrook who did some analysis of her blog’s stats for the month of October.

Her blog increased it’s traffic from 3,000 readers in September to 11,000 in October – that’s pretty good growth. That’s partly due to some great StumbleUpon traffic (which accounted for 8000+ visitors) – but Caroline also worked a number of other sources over the month.

What struck me about her analysis was a section on traffic from other blogs (including ProBlogger). ProBlogger sent Caroline 94 visitors. When I checked to see when I linked to her I wasn’t able to find a link. The traffic came completely from comments that Caroline left on my posts.

In fact Caroline had just under 700 visitors to her blog this month from leaving comments on other people’s blogs.

The key to her success with this is that Caroline doesn’t spam blogs with meaningless comments – but she contributes to the conversations already happening, stays on topic and adds value to the blogs that she visits (or at least she has here at ProBlogger. Caroline doesn’t leave links in her comments – the traffic comes from people clicking her name to find out who is behind the insightful comments that she leaves.

Of course some will argue that 700 visitors isn’t a lot of traffic per month from the activity of commenting on blogs – however I think it’s actually fairly decent for a blog that is only a few months old – particularly when you consider that she’s managing to convert readers into subscribers. Add 4 or 5 new loyal readers to your blog every day (like Caroline has done by the looks of her RSS feed stats) and you end up with thousands of readers a day over a year.

So while it is perhaps the most overused ‘blog tip’ on finding readers for a blog – I guess commenting on other people’s blogs continues to be an activity that pays off.

found via my Vanity Folder

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. Commenting on other blogs is a powerful way to get visits. I know many bloggers that are doing this and the results are overwhelming. Although i do not agree with this kind of promotion, i have to admit that it works. And it’s a money generator.

  2. I´ve found that ProBlogger is a very good place to comment, not only because of the active blog community here, but a lot of people check out other commentors´ blogs.

    You can also learn just about as much from the comments as the post, which is why I often read them even if I don´t leave a note myself. :D

  3. So true.

    Lately I’ve been really busy (launching 3 websites, managing nusuni dot com, and writing a content management system), so I haven’t been commenting as much. There’s definitely been a slowdown in new subscribers since I stopped commenting as much.

  4. I would be very happy if i got 700 new readers. Commenting on other blogs could help for sure..

  5. More important than the actual number of visitors is how much time she spent commenting to get those visitors. If she spent more than half an our a day (15 hours a month), then I would assume it would have been cheaper just to spent the money on Google Adwords or something

  6. Good post. Me too.

    Now that’s the kind of comment that won’t get you anywhere (but is awfully nice for the author to hear. I know I enjoy any and all comments even if they don’t contribute the conversation because they make me feel special… of course I don’t get a lot of comments to begin with)

    Like the previous commenters, I too have found that commenting on blogs is a great traffic generator. As a “mommy blogger” I’m often checking out other mom blogs. I try to use my comment there to add to the conversation AND to let them know how I got there. It’s the “de-lurking” concept that can help both blog author and commenter alike.

    And thanks to pro-blogger for sending me lots of traffic every time I do have something relevant to say!

  7. Here on ProBlogger we usually find great comments that really add value to the post and increases the conversation. That’s natural for those good ‘commenters’ to get visitors.

  8. Do you have any suggestions for commenting in a way that will draw interest to you? Obviously an insightful comment is the best plan…. but when there are 100+ comments sometimes they get over looked.

  9. It is nice to know that comments are that important to build traffic. I like to leave comments in blogs but I felt that it was a waste of time sometimes because many bloggers don’t bother about reading them.

    Now I know that at least it will affect my traffic. I will comment more then. :)

    By the way, your blog is a great guide for new bloggers, but I am sure you already know that.

    Nice job!


  10. You know. I’ve just started blogging. And I’ve always had a sense that commenting was a good way. I think this a great article. And a great site. Since I’m new to the scene I appreciate all the insight.

  11. I agree that the power of commenting is there, I also would like to emphasize the import of contributing to the convo going on. I actually pay attention to where I have commented by using my visitors stats. Those posts that I have visitors from are the ones that are most likly to have additional conversations going on in the comments for me to check back on in my niche.

  12. This subject always brings up a question for me, but this is the first time I’ve actually brought it up anywhere.

    What I’d like to know is what do people consider a usual comment or rather, where does the line begin between spam and contributing to the conversation, especially when there are already 60+ comments on a post, as there was with this exact post?

    That being said, is there an unspoken deadline for comments? I know these posts are always available and searchable, but does it make sense to only comment on posts no more than a week old? maybe two weeks?

    Finally, of course its best to comment on blogs that compliment your own, but where are the exceptions? We run an interior design blog, but does commenting here benefit us? What is the likelihood that readers of Problogger are going to be interested in our subject? A chance we should be willing to take or should we focus on related sites instead.

  13. Great post! When my blog was first starting out, much of the traffic I received came from commenting on other blogs.

    I also like reading other people’s comments and looking at their blogs as well. There’s so much out there it can be hard to find. I have come across some really good blogs just by clicking on the links that commenters provide – even right here at ProBlogger (although I’m not surprised!). :-)

  14. I think the web is so full of people who are out there making blogs to make money. Sure why not, but if that is the main motivation then it is just work, for me, well there are better ways to make money then spamming the hell out of the web, I often wonder how tedious that must get, spending hours adding useless comments like “yeah good blog” etc just to add a link.
    I have 3 blogs that cover my 3 main interests, and if I get 1 reader a day then I am happy, for me it is all about sharing something I am passionate about, not about the stats.

    so with that said

    Yeah great blog…hehe

  15. Leaving a good comment is always important. While some blogs have thousands of readers a day and other just a few. Any visit is a good visit and any link is a good link.

    While some do not think 700 is a large number, we must not forget our own beginnings in the world of blogs. My first website was a retail business ten years ago, getting traffic can be a bit harder when all you offer is products. I would have killed for 700 visits in a month on the first website. Although I did learn a lot from the experience.

  16. Yes there have been many changes in google algo regarding the nofollow tag too. You can read here about it


  17. There was a post on crmhelpdesksoftware.com that listed over 100 Blogs with a PR$ – PR6 with the NO-NOFOLLOW tag turned off. This commenting on these sites with REAL COMMENTS

  18. Darren,

    That’s a good point, but Caroline does NOT discuss the time/results ratio of leaving comments on 10-15 different blogs per month. It’s true she got over 700 new visitors, but in the end she made $0 for the month in terms of income.

    For new bloggers who have to deal with so many different components of a business, how to you include a function like comments on blogs and forum in a way that actually brings in tangible results…and not just people landing on your homepage?

    Do you hire someone to do it on a daily base?

    Getting traffic (good quality traffic) seems harder than getting Britney Spears to leave her home with underwear on for new bloggers.


  19. 700 referrals based on comments alone is phenomenal, IMO. Each of those 700 has the potential to link to her or share her posts with others – which could ultimately result in even more visitors.

    The ripple effect (aka word of mouth) may be difficult to measure, but it’s probably by far the most effective method of blog growth.

  20. Well commenting on other blogs is quite powerful. But quality comments are more important than quantity comments, do not you think? Some blog owners become very happy if they get a hundred meaningless comments on their blogs, but are disappointed if there are only a few but quality posts in there. How strange?!?!

  21. 700 is just a few hundred less of my complete monthly traffic. I discovered the importance of commenting when I started making my rounds through other blogs, commented on about a dozen of them, and saw my monthly visits go from 250 to almost 600.

    I attest, hallelujah!

  22. I don’t know, 700 visitors sounds like a ton to me! At this point, just starting out, I’d be happy with half that. That being said, and despite the topic of the article, I do feel a wee bit guilty leaving a comment, just in hopes of attracting some visitors of my own…

  23. Millionare, do not feel guilty. After all, nobody forces you to put the link to your website. You can left the box empty. :P

  24. If anyone wants an easy way to get a bunch of comments just try to get in the top 10 comments on one of john chow’s income reports – those things can really drive traffic heh.

  25. Hats off to you, Caroline!! Thank you, Darren!

    In reading all of the comments here, you have added light-years to my knowledge.

    This is only the second time since my blogging began that I have commented, because I do not feel I have enough experience. All of you and your commenting are quite endearing to new bloggers.

    Being eleven months into blogging and trying to gain comments is and has been a daunting experience. However, I realized the need to have credible, somewhat humorous and logical posts after studying ‘blogging’ for many months prior. Plus, your thoughts for this particular post remind me of a real down-to-earth community.

    I’ve seen really negative posts on others blogs and thought the old adage… ‘if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say it’. So, Maki Eduardo, I understand what you mean.

    Congratulations to you for your content and traffic you are able to attain. Keep up the terrific energy and endurance!

    Many ‘Thanks’ for sharing your insight and bless all of your hearts!!!!!!!!

  26. PING: Turtie.
    I write on my blog until I am ‘all written out’ for the day … then go on a stroll through other blogs to post comments wherever I think I can add to the dialog.

    Then I go live some other part of my life, keeping a lookout for fresh blog material.

  27. Thanks for such an informative and entertaining article. I used to comment on other people’s blogs but not on a regular basis and even though I got some amount of traffic and links back to my blog, I didn’t pay much attention to commenting and eventually stopped doing it altogether. Such a big mistake!

    Now reading this post, and a similar success story I read at another blog and also reading many of the comments of people here who seem to have got good success with commenting, I am now determined to start making useful comments on other blogs and do so on a regular basis.

    Commenting can help not only in building traffic and back-links, but also in building my online reputation as anyone can become known among people of his/her niche.

    It can also help in cultivating strong healthy relationships online as people might notice you and they in turn would like to comment on your blog, thereby starting a good relationship among bloggers with similar interests. I thing frequent commenters (who make useful comments and participate in the discussion going on) can attract a lot of favorable attention. Am I right?

  28. I like it how everyone is repeating the same thing over and over again just so they can do just that, get more traffic to their blog.

    I believe it is a great strategy, but just repeating what someone else said ahead of you but only in a different way is not the way to do it.

    Be unique. Your comments are apart of your brand, so try to distinguish yourself from others.

    If someone said it before you, chances are you aren’t being unique, your just being a non-contributing traffic building commenting machine, and those aren’t fun to talk to.

  29. Igor The Troll says: 11/09/2007 at 8:18 pm

    ProB, I am in total accordance with you! You are very often ahead of the curve.

    So, if anyone wants to see what I am about can just Google me!

    I am not even going to drop my link in the signiture..:)

  30. I totally agree. I try to comment on several blogs every day. It’s actually pretty fun to track down interesting blogs. From there, you just do like you said, leave interesting and insightful comments that people will be inclined to follow.

    What I have found particularly important about this method is that EVERY one of my somewhat regular visitors are either friends, family, or those who followed a comment to my site. That’s pretty powerful. I do get random stoppers-by from search engines, banner impressions, blogrush, traffic exchanges, etc… but you get some good quality traffic from comments. I really need to put together a strategy for hunting down blogs to comment on. So far, I’m using a combination of blogrush and RSS tracking to find good articles… but it’s slow going.

  31. I am amazed on the result of Caroline’s post. In addition, quality comments not only resulted to traffic, but also real friends on-line who can give you more inspiration to write good and informative posts. I am also posting some comments on some good blogs. Although I have not yet been awarded financially, I know I am on my way there…thanks for reminding me!

  32. I am new to blogging, and I only became aware that I was blogging recently. I am a trained pizzaiolo, who recently decide to share my passion for fresh pizza with the world. Now that I’ve got my Youtube channel up and running, I’m starting a blog. I’ve only been commenting on other bloggs , so far, and have seen the interest other’s have shown in my comments. My viewership is steadily increasing , and it’s just from posting videos, and commenting on the other food blogs, mostly bakespace.com.

  33. Commenting on others blogs just for the sake of increasing the traffic on ones own is a turn off and a pain in the neck and nothing but another form of spam. But it seems that a big part of the net commmunity is pleased with this kind of less than superficial “pseudo-communication” and loves to scratch others backs hoping that they in turn will scratch their own = payoff in clicks ->money. This blog seems to be nothing but the same dull place that celebrates the empty “goddess of traffic” as the ultimate goal of acticity.

  34. Nice post Darren thanks!
    Just yesterday I came across this plug in to encourage good comments and reward the commenter with a dofollow link.

    I haven’t installed it yet but it seems very promising.

  35. whoa. 700 visitors is quite a large number! Well now I get the true importance or commenting on other people’s blogs! Previously i thought it was just a waste of time.

  36. I’ll be a little scepticist. I feel that when commenting to other blogs (especially in a small “market” like Greece) the major number of visitors came from these sites are only bloggers who runs their own blogs.

  37. That is a very interesting point. When ever I read a comment on a blog I like ,in most cases I go to that persons blog and read the material . This was the same method I used for finding problogger!

  38. Darren you have given me a strong reson to think on my part about the way to comment all around. Even no body likes to have a meaningless spam coments stating nothing usefull stuff other than just passing their URL. Even that frustrates the Author of the blog of that weired responses. And if u find a good response u even dont mind to pass a interrelated link to others blog & even not hold on its approval part.

    And as i am new to this world all over i got some interesting facts to come across ur blog and the responses provided by the visitor.. Thanks

  39. I just started my blog at blogger. I’ve been asking my brothers and friends to test it out , for function , as I kept getting an error message , and no responses when I clicked on interacting feilds. This was finally solved , when I stripped every module , and tracked it to my Amazon Unbox player. All the traffic that came to , what I was really happy with , was unable to see all my youtube work , or even comment on my posts. So , I have to say that the traffic will only build by returning to a Vlog , which they can interact with, by commenting on . I am rebuilding it , and will continue to study this great resouce … Thanks to all of you for publishing , and commenting.

  40. I’m lucky to get one link back from a comment that I post, nevermind 94 like Caroline, so I think she’s definitely doing somethign write.

  41. So how do you guys ensure that the content of your comments is worthwhile and attracts a response ?? Great article by teh way…

  42. Hey, interesting article and resource you have here.

    I’ve only been blogging since August and find i waste a lot of time commenting on other blogs – mostly because so far I have stuck to a small writers community and have focused on getting some writing on my own two blogs (i have one for journalling and one for some fiction I’m working on). Time is short in my household so cruising the blogosphere (or whatevs its called) is a luxury I don’t often allow… and, to be honest, a lot of the blogs that are part of my ‘community’ don’t really get me worked up enough to leave any time-worthy remarks…and the comments left on my own blog are not the kind of open ended, inviting kind that generate any conversation from me – should I be responding to comments left on my blog? should I go and visit the blogs of the inane commenters? hmmm.

    …not to mention that I wouldn’t have the foggiest idea of how to find stats about visitors etc – and I’m guessing that it will take a whole lot of clicking to find out!

    but – you reap what you sow!

    I’d love to increase traffic to my sites so a new strategy would be to chose blog comments wisely – that is, find/write some content that actually inspires some decent commentary (er, like this one??) and join a wider community of like-minded souls – no?

    *sigh* there is so much to learn.

  43. amazingly enough, I’ve had similar luck with comment posting. nowhere near the degree of success that caroline has had but it does prove to me that it can be a fruitful way of getting yourself known. the key is to choose a few good websites with similar content to your own with lots of readers, comment regularly on their posts and become a member of their community, good things will come of it.

  44. There is a lot of good advice on this site. I am fairly new to blogging and trying to promote my site. I’m going to bookmark your site and try more of these ideas and I’ll try to post regularly to show how they are working.

  45. That’s a really interesting post. I’ve used stumble upon before but I’m curious how she’s generating all that traffic from her stumble upon account. Does Caroline have an enormous number of stumble upon friends?

    I agree, commenting is important though

  46. As an executive apprentice in the world of promoting a blog, and an intermediate WordPress user, as well as a seasoned Windows Administrator, I would never have thought that the amount of time I would spend on a given task, such as commenting, would actually pay off. Thanks for the insight!

  47. I will be doing a website traffic increasing trial this month to get from a measly 7 visitors per day to at least 50. Making blog comments will be one of the tactics I will be using, so I will certainly be able to report back soon, in a month, if you will.
    So, we know that a good blog comment draws direct traffic from the comment but does it also look better in Google’s books, I wonder? Obviously, you get more inbound links but perhaps so many links on one page gets disregarded by the big G. Anyone know?

  48. leaving comments is essential becuase you also get linkbacks.
    but you also have to be sure to leave a worthwhile comment.

  49. This is a great post and very encouraging for me as a fairly ‘fresh’ (new) blogger. The more I comment the more traffic I get. Considering comments can send you traffic for years to come as you continue to comment the amount of traffic coming your way will increase over time

  50. Wow, I just found out about it. I am new into blogging world, so I learn new every day. Thanks for the article, great tips!

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