Recently, I found a new type of gig online – blog commenting services. The job basically requires you to read an article and give a 3 to 4 liners in exchange for a fee. Sounds like a fair trade, right? But why would people want to buy comments in the first place?
Is there an actual benefit to it? Here’s what I discovered and why I think you should avoid this type of service at all cost.
What Are Comments All About
Comments are generally readers’ written expression towards the articles that we publish online. They could come in the form of neutral opinions, disagreement, suggestions or even controversial ideas. Over the years, they have become an important metric in online marketing due to one main factor – keywords.
You see, when people offer blog comments, they would use words that are relevant to the topic of discussion. As these words build up, your article will be indexed for various keywords besides the one that you are targeting for.
The more relevant keywords there are, the higher a page would rank on the search engines. Essentially, they add valuable content to a preexisting article, giving it more online exposure.
What Made People Get Into This Trading
The challenge for a new site is that it takes a while to get indexed and ranked if you are relying on organic (natural) traffic. Hence, blog comments, if you get any at all, will trickle in much later. For some, this long wait could mean that you are losing out to competitors who have more engagement.
For bloggers or online business owners, this technique will shorten the process tremendously by helping to boost traffic to a certain post, improving on the on-page SEO and building the kind of desired reputation for their brand.
For the commentators, well, it’s another way to make money online. Say, the rate is $1 per comment. If you offer 20 per day for a week, you could potentially earn about $140 from doing this task. I know it’s not lucrative, but still, it’s a fairly good amount of money.
At the end of the day, it’s a win-win situation for both parties and on the surface, it does seem like a fair trade, without anyone going against any rules. However, that impression might change after you see some of the screen shots below.
These are some of the requests posted by bloggers for such services (read the lines carefully).
Obviously, any type of comment will not do. The bloggers have specifically stated the criteria that they want, but will they be able to get it? Here’s a look at the different type of bidders (commentators) in the marketplace who are willing to do the job (again, read every single word carefully).
Are you a bit dazed after reading these offers? Well, I am and I bet if you have been blogging for a while, you would anticipate some troubles already. For those who are new to this, let me clarify why such service is a bad idea.
Potential Problems That Could Arise
There’s a high chance that most of these commentators aren’t native English speakers. Did you notice the spelling mistakes and grammar errors in their promotion pitch? Yup, those are the telltale signs. Plus, it’s more common for non-native to do the job because the money that they earn converts into more value as compared to native speakers.
You actually need to hire several people because receiving comments from the same source (same computer) can be regarded as spamming. Ideally, one blog should have comments coming from different IP addresses.
Good quality comments are important, but if you start to manipulate the reader’s reaction such as requesting for only positive feedbacks or even providing your own scripts, your user engagement is going to look very unnatural.
No matter how ‘clean’ you want the job to be done, you are suppressing individual expression. Soon, people will sense the awkwardness and the search engines will find out that you are stuffing keywords in the response.
Last but not the least, do you actually think that someone will provide a good quality service for $1 to $3? This is almost like a Fiverr gig that has the reputation of under delivering. Alright, they might commit for several weeks, but are you going to engage with them over the long term?
Are you going to spend $20 for every post that you publish? It is even worth the time managing these somewhat unnatural comments and its consequences? That’s something to really think about.
“But Cathy, You Didn’t Even Try…”
Well, I don’t need to. Firstly, I don’t want my site to get into trouble.
Secondly, the place that host my blog and taught me how to run a proper online business actually provides a platform where I can exchange comments with other bloggers WITHOUT having to pay for anything.
It’s called SiteComments and let me show you how it works. Every week, I would offer comments to various niche blogs and earn credits which I could then use to request comments for my published posts. I can choose to have them delivered immediately or over the course of 7 to 14 days.
To date, I have gained more than 2000 comments that come from various parts of the world. You can see all of them in action in my Time Rich Worry Free blog. I engage with anything that is positive or negative, as long as they are relevant to the topic of the articles.
And because these comments come from like-minded people, I am often inspired by their thoughts which gives me fresh ideas (new keywords) to generate content for my blog. This is what I really like about SiteComments and I am still an active user even after 2 years of blogging.
So, Is Buying Comments Worthy of Your Time?
My straight forward answer is no. I am not impressed by this type of trading and I certainly wouldn’t waste my time scrutinizing for that ‘perfect comment’. Natural comments offer more value, add quality and have more potential to build your readership and trust from the search engines.
Hopefully this article has given you a better insight about buying comments and why you should not use it. If you like to learn more about the commenting system that I am using to boost my blog posts, please visit Wealthy Affiliate for the participation details. I will be within the community to help you out so just give me a shout.
Have any thoughts or questions about this topic? Let’s hear about them in the comment below.
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