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The Importance of Blog Comments In Search Engine Optimization

Oct 19, 2007
Blog comments can help with the search engine optimization of your website by seriously improving your ranking within the major search engines. Where sometimes webmasters running traditional websites complain about being in the Google Sandbox for months, bloggers often report seeing their results in search engine results just a few days after they activate their blogs and start posting entries. Furthermore, blog software programs such as WordPress and Blogger have the reputation as being search engine magnets that cause quick indexing by search engines.

Many webmasters have also become bloggers to make the most out of this windfall of rapid indexing by search engines. They say that starting a blog, optimizing posts for keywords, and linking it heavily to their website can get things moving much more quickly in having their website indexed, and getting it out of Google's sandbox.

It is not only blog posts which rank quickly in search engine results, you will also notice that when you do a search, and you click on the results, often the results are not articles or posts as you would expect, but comments. Blog comments and forum comments are often featured highly in search results.

To understand blog comments and the part they play in search engine optimization, we will first look briefly at SEO for blogs and what makes blogs, search engine friendly.

You can set up your blog, so that whenever you write a new post or update an old one the search engines and associated services are automatically pinged. This lets them know you have new content. Hopefully, these notifications will result in more traffic and more blog comments. Search engines favor and look for fresh content. Especially well optimized content, including niche specific and relevant anchor text. The very nature of blogs, with their chronological posting structure, promotes regular, fresh content. Some bloggers even post a number of times each day. Even plug-ins and widgets like Twitter add fresh content.

The good news about blog comments is that the search engines see them as content, and most of it, you did not even have to write yourself. Other people are writing your content for you. Visitors add a blog comment, the blog owner replies, someone else chimes in and soon you have a conversation developing. It is not unusual to see some blogs with twenty or more comments, if the discussion is really sparking.

Even a new blogger will soon attract comments, especially if they are proactive in commenting on other blogs. They also need to link out to related websites and blogs, and start to network. If they let other bloggers know they exist, and begin to attract traffic, it will not be long before they attract blog comments.

Now here is the SEO bonus of the whole blog comment deal: because your readers are commenting on your post, it is quite likely that a lot of the content of the comments are going to reflect your keywords or at least your topic. Your comments in reply can be search engine optimized and keyword rich, where appropriate.

Like your posts, make sure it is still natural language, because your main aim is to keep the conversation going. You want to keep your readers engaged and interested. They are more likely to come back if your website offers value and a sense of community. Remember that your fellow bloggers are SEO savvy too, and can spot people who are gaming the system from a mile away. Do not compromise authenticity for search engine optimization. It is not worth it.

Some bloggers have taken blog comments a step further with regular open microphone or cafe style nights. Everyone comes and has something of a virtual party or discussion in the comments section. Be innovative. Work out ways to leverage the potential of your blog comments so that your website is the ultimate beneficiary of the search engine optimizing power of blog comments.
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