Comment Section-Open or Closed and Web Lead Conversion Rates
Guest blog post written by Audeliz Angie Perez
Alright I am a newbie blogger, I’ll admit it and maybe I am still a little bit green behind the ears, but as much as blogging is part of my social media marketing strategy, I create content on and off my web page all the time by. One strategy that can affect your off page SEO, for example, is to actively comment on other bloggers blogs. Some people call this backlinking. I call it an opportunity to build a relationship with other bloggers or readers of blogs. Afterall, in the world of blogging, who wants to talk to themselves?
Apparently some bloggers do not want to open up their blog’s comment section and simply want to just blog and not interact with commentators, which somewhat irks me because I like commenting on other blogs if only to add my two cents or to show my appreciation for great content. But, when a blogger purposefully closes his/her comment section, I can’t help but wonder, what does that say about you, Mr. Blogger? Do you not want to give any comment luv or interact (Disqus) with the people who stumble upon you on from the search engines?
I am having a bad reaction to stumbling upon a great blog post and not having the opportunity to speak to the author of this real estate blog (I’ll be nice and backlink to you, even if you don’t have the time to backlink to me). This experience of not having the opportunity to speak to the author or interact with other commentators who may have read the same blog entry as me got me thinking. Does closing your comment section or not allowing comments on your blog posts, hurt your ability to convert on your web leads, connect with your readers or develop a following? Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of closing the comment section on your blog and common pitfalls you may want to avoid, especially when it comes to web conversion rates.
Closed Comment Section: Does it hurt your ability to a convert a web lead?
Here’s a screenshot of the website where I read a great blog post, but the comment section of the blog was closed. Notice that on the same page to the left, which is generally where most people look when reading a web page, there are three different conversion forms, tools or icons to encourage me to contact the author/blogger. Apparently, I can contact him via google voice, on one of the social media or networking sites or add myself to his aweber email marketing list, which I absolutely felt compelled to do after I read his post. In fact, I even liked his FB page after reading his post and now I am blogging about it. So, I would say that when you close your comment section on your blog, it does NOT hurt your ability to convert a web lead as long as you add several lead capturing/conversion tools/icons to your site. Let’s go over the three that we see in the image. We have Google Voice, Social Media Icons and an email sign-up form.
Does it hurt your ability to connect with your readers?
I am a big fan of reading comments as much as I am of fan of reading the blog post itself. This might be because I love interacting with other people. I love debate or great discussions. When you close your comment section, you may inadvertently deny yourself the opportunity to moderate the possibility of a great discussion among your customers, friends, followers or fans. An open comment section means you are open to feedback, questions, concerns and agreeable to moderate the conversation. So my answer to whether or not does it hurt your ability to connect with your readers is YES, temporarily. It’s quite possible that you're delaying a great connection, especially if you rely on the user to find you or your business some other way. I suspect not everyone will connect with you as I did. I suppose some would argue that you are creating your own inbound marketing funnel. Only time and testing will tell.
Does it hurt your ability to develop a following?
In this case, the answer is NO. If I felt compelled to look the author up on the top three social networks (Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn). I suspect others may do the same. Besides, developing an online following has so much more to do with brand awareness, consistency of purpose and this individual’s follow-up or sales skills. Therefore, a closed comment section may not hurt his ability to develop a following, it may, however, hurt his ability to connect immediately (some buyers do buy at the peak of their excitement-ergo the saying strike while the iron is hot), but it certainly not hurt his ability to develop a following.
Ms. Perez is a Broker-Salesperson for Weichert, Realtors. She is the founder of AgentKnowHow and a number of other real estate websites. As an active real estate sales agent and dedicated sales trainer living in NJ, Ms. Perez loves to share her expertise. She can be reached via email at email@example.com.