WordPress comments made easy with Disqus plugin
Let’s face it, WordPress is one of the best blogging platforms available, but their the built-in WordPress comments system lacks some features. The standard WordPress comments system also doesn’t always look good on all themes, and can easily be spammed if you’re not willing to pay for additional spam protection.
Luckily there’s a plugin available to make all of these problems go away. a Plugin that allows you to integrate an easy-to-use, modern-looking WordPress comments system that hates spam.
The default comments system WordPress comes with is fairly simple. It provides a very basic comment form that anyone can use to leave a comment on your posts. You can disable comments from your admin dashboard, and you can restrict comments to only registered user. But this doesn’t stop spammers from commenting on your blog. They leave a simple comment, usually unrelated to the post their commenting on, and add a link to their website.
Now you should know I’m all for using blog comments to drive traffic back to your website, and to build links back to my site. But I believe that comments shouldn’t be made in a spammy way – if you want to include a link back to your site in comments, leave something of value.
Disqus WordPress Comments Plugin
Before installing the plugin, let me take a moment to quickly tell you more about the Disqus plugin. Disqus is a comment platform that hosts all your comments on their server. The system works with a variety of platforms, as well as custom integrations – WordPress is only one of their supported platforms.
What the plugin does, is it replaces the standard WordPress comments system with your comments hosted on the Disqus network. Installation is quick and easy, and the integration process is really painless.
To read more about the Disqus WordPress Comments plugin, visit their official WordPress plugin page at https://wordpress.org/plugins/disqus-comment-system/
Here’s a quick overview of all the features offered by the Disqus system and WordPress plugin.
- The plugin uses the Disqus API to integrate Disqus comments on your WordPress website, and integrated with the WordPress comments system.
- Comments are SEO friendly and can be indexed by search engines.
- Comments are automatically synced between Disqus and your WordPress website’s database.
- You can import existing comments into Disqus.
- Comments and replies are threaded.
- Commenters can subscribe via the subscribe or RSS options.
- Integrated notifcations and reply by email.
- Disqus offers full spam filtering, as well as blacklists and whitelists.
There’s more features offered by the plugin. To read the full list of features, visit the plugin’s official page.
Installing the Disqus plugin is quick and easy. Simply log in to your admin dashboard and navigate to “Plugins” > “Add New”. Use the search box to search for “Disqus” and click on “Install Now” to install the plugin. Once installation is done, click on “Activate Plugin” to activate the Disqus plugin.
After activating the plugin, you’ll be taken back to the “Plugins” page. From here, look for the “Disqus Comment System” entry and click on “Configure” underneath it.
Upgrade Your Database
Okay, simply telling you to “Upgrade your database” might have just spooked you. But, fear not. This is a very simple procedure and it’s really safe. The “Upgrade Your Database” step is part of the initial configuration of the Disqus plugin, and configures your database for compatibility. Remember that the Disqus plugin will integrate the Disqus community commenting system with your WordPress comments system.
To proceed, simply click on the “Upgrade>>” button and wait for the upgrade to complete.
Now it’s time to register an account at Disqus. You will be using this account to connect your WordPress comments system to Disqus. This account will also store all comments made on your WordPress website via the Disqus commenting system.
To sign up, head over to https://disqus.com/profile/signup/
As you will notice, you can sign up using Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus or manuall via email. I usually use the email option, but you’re free to use one of the other options. Go ahead and fill out the registration form, and complete your registration. You might have to validate your email address if you register with your email address.
You will be taken to a page where you need to follow 3 channels. Disqus works like a community, where you can start your own channels and follow others. So start off by following any 3 channels – it’s a good idea to follow channels related to your niche.
You can follow more than 3 channels if you want to. It’s not limited to only 3, but 3 is a good start. Click on “Continue” once you’ve followed at least 3. This will add the channels you followed to your account, and take you to your main dashboard.
This is where you’ll start. Here you have a “timeline” where you can view posts from different channels. You can also create your own channel and create new posts – anyone who follows you will have your posts in their “timeline” as well.
Simply click on the “Got it!” button to provide yourself access to all the features.
Add Disqus To Your Website
Now it’s time to add the Disqus system to your website, and complete the initial connection / configuration. This is very easy – in the top right corner of the main Disqus dashboard you will see a button that reads “Discuss”, followed by an avatar, and next to it you will find a gear icon. Click on the gear icon to expand the menu, and then click on “Add Disqus To Site”.
Next you will be presented with a page about “Engage”. You can sign up if you want to, but to create the required settings for your website, all you need to do is click the “Install on Your Site” button in the top menu.
Now enter your blog / website’s name, choose a unique Disqus URL for your site and lastly choose the category that best fits your site.
Click the “Next” button to continue. This will start a process to configure your new site with the Disqus system, and will automatically create your unique Disqus URL. During this process, they will also ask you a few questions. Complete these questions until the end, and click the “Finish” button.
You can now navigate back to your blog where you are busy setting up the Disqus plugin.
Connect to Disqus
It’s time to connect the Disqus plugin to the Disqus system using the details you just registered with. After upgrading your database, you should’ve been presented with a login screen in your WordPress admin dashboard. Now simply login using the details you used when you registered your Disqus account and click “Next>>”.
Next select the website you just created following the previous steps, and click “Next>>”.
This concludes the installation of the Disqus plugin on your WordPress site. Now Disqus has been integrated with your WordPress comments system, and you can edit your comment settings in the Disqus dashboard. There’s also a link to the Disqus dashboard in your WordPress admin area.
So we’ve reached the end of this post. I told you about a plugin “Disqus” – the plugin will integrate with your current WordPress comments system and provide your WordPress website with an overall better commenting system. If you followed my instructions correctly, you should have Disqus comments activated on your posts now. You’ll immediately notice that it just looks and works better than the default WordPress system’s commenting.
If you found this post useful in any way, please don’t forget to share. And be sure to leave a comment below if you have anything to add (By the way – you can see the Disqus commenting system in action below!!)