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How to respond to comments in WordPress (2021)

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It is said that progress and development are a result of criticism consisting of constructive comments. If you own a WordPress site, it’s so essential to communicate with your website viewers, to know their thoughts, and to pay attention to their needs and criticism.

how to respond to a comment in WordPress

WordPress comes with a built-in comment system that allows for community interaction around your content. So, it’s really important to know how to respond to a comment on your WordPress site.

What are Comments in WordPress?

Comments On Posts are written reactions that readers can add to your blog posts. Leaving a comment on a blog post is an easy way for your visitors to communicate with you and other readers. A lively comment area can be a great way for you and your readers to build a community around your blog. Visitors can add their input on a specific article that you had written, ask questions, and provide feedback.

comments in WordPress

Comments usually appear on your site right after the blog post content, along with the commenter’s name, the date, and the time they left the comment. Once someone submits a comment, it will be held for moderation for you to approve or delete. This allows you to control what appears on your website.

Replying to a Comment in WordPress

To respond to a comment that someone has written in one of your posts, what you need to do, is simply hover the mouse over the comment and click the Reply link when it appears. An edit field will then appear beneath the comment where you can type your reply.

After you’ve completed writing your comment, click the Reply button or click on the Cancel option to stop replying and cancel your editing.

An editor appears when replying or editing a comment (using the Reply, Quick Edit, or Edit links) that is much like the editor that appears while creating or editing a Page or Post, only not as intuitive. You will find numerous formatting buttons at the top of the editor. These buttons would provide you with basic html formatting capabilities when composing a new reply comment or editing an existing comment.

replying to a comment

The buttons work in two ways. When you click a button without highlighting any text, it will simply insert the opening html tag relevant for that button. For example, if you click the Bold button, it will insert the html tag into your comment.

Clicking the Bold button again will close the tag by inserting the closing tag. Now if you highlight some text before clicking a button, both the opening and closing tags will be inserted around that highlighted text. For example, highlighting the text, ‘bold text’, before clicking the Bold button will insert ‘bold text’.

img 60711dfdbfdf2 Bold – for making text bold
img 60711dfe6a2e5 Italic – to italicize text
img 60711dff0c718 Link – is used to inserting a website link. When the button is clicked a pop-up window will appear where you type in the URL that you would like to link to
img 60711dffa075f Blockquote – is used to show a quote. How this looks will be entirely dependent on the Theme that your site is currently using
img 60711e00319c8 Delete – is used as a way of showing deleted text. How this looks will be dependent on the Theme but is usually done by showing the text with a strikethrough
img 60711e00bbcc8 Insert – is used as a way of showing inserted text. How this looks will be dependent on the Theme but is usually done by showing the text with an underline
img 60711e015b20e Image – is used to insert an image into the comment. When the button is clicked a pop-up window will appear where you type in the URL of the image that you would like inserted
img 60711e01ee661 Unordered List – is used to inserting an unordered (or un-numbered) list
img 60711e02861d8 Ordered List – is used to inserting an ordered (or numbered) list
img 60711e032438b List Item – is used to insert a list item into your ordered or un-ordered list
img 60711e03bc24d Code – is used for indicating a piece of code
img 60711e045ae37 Close Tags – is used to close the open tags. If for example, you clicked both the Bold and Italic buttons to insert their opening tags, clicking the close tags button will insert both of the matching closing tags, in the correct order

Moderating Comments in WordPress

You can see all comments on your WordPress website by clicking on the comments menu in WordPress.

Moderating Comments in WordPress

You will see four different tabs on the comments page – all comments, pending, approved, spam and trash. Comments that need your approval will appear under the Pending tab.

If you want to approve a comment, take your mouse over to the comment, and you will see action links appear below the comment. Click on Approve option to make a comment which would be publicly visible on your website. You can also reply to a comment by clicking on the reply link. Also, replying to a comment automatically approves the comment as well.

If you see a comment that looks or feels to be spammy, then you can mark it as Spam.

There are few different indicators that you can use to tell if a comment is spam:

§  Comments with a bunch of links, keywords, and strange characters – This is the most obvious type of spam comment, and you should not have a hard time recognizing it apart from a real comment.

§  Comment with a Fake Name – If you see a comment that’s being left by a person named “Best Mortgage Rates” or “Cheap Printer Ink”, then you can tell it’s a marketer trying to spam your site for a backlink.

§  Generic Comments – Often spammers rely on generic comments to bypass your spam filter. These generic comments are “Thank You”, “Really Nice Article”, or insert the title of your post and make a generic statement.

WordPress comes pre-installed with Akismet, but you need to activate the plugin and signup for this anti-spam service to help you reduce spam. If you accidentally get hundreds of spam comments appearing in the Pending section, then simply come to the Spam tab and click on the check for spam button of the Spam folder.

This will trigger a spam check on existing comments on your website and Akismet will move spam comments from Pending to Spam. You can click on the Empty Spam button to delete all spam comments at once, though spam comments will be automatically deleted by WordPress after 15 days.

If you want to disable comments which are low-level comments or trash comments without marking them as spam, then simply click on the Trash link below the comment. Comments deleted by you will be sent to trash and will live there for the next 30 days.

You can find other articles about your WordPress site at Blog –

Author avatar
Tim Michaels
I am into WordPress and web development for the last 10 years. I use my experience to help people just starting with WordPress. Follow my blog at WP Uber for everything related to WordPress.
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