One of the major victories for a new blogger is when her/his posts begin to get comments on them!! It is so exciting to see that what you are writing is getting read, and that people care enough about it to leave a response. But even before you get to the feedback stage, it’s important to think about the types of comments that you might be receiving.
Inviting comments from the world wide web is a bit like opening your home up to strangers. The majority of people who trek through will be polite and respectful, but then there are the exceptions. And you need to be prepared in advance for those folks!
For that purpose, it is a good idea to create a “Comments Policy” for your blog and have it displayed either as its own page or as a prominent link on your sidebar. Unless you happen to enjoy reading spam, you don’t want to leave commenting up to chance.
So think about how you would like strangers to behave if they came to your house, and you will be well on your way to creating an effective comments policy for your blog!
Things you might want to include:
- Appreciation for your readers and commenters
- Explanation of your community-building hopes for your blog
- Listing of comment types that would not be appreciated
- Your intolerance for spamming
Not only will a well-defined comments policy help your readers understand the type of blog atmosphere you are trying to create, but it will also help you when it comes time to approve or reject those comments that come in. When you are sitting there wondering whether to click “yea” or “nay”, all you have to do is refer back to your policy for a reminder of what it is you are trying to do here at your blog, and your clicking finger will have some moral support!
For more in-depth guidance on building a community for your blog, check out our eight-week Blogging 101 course!!