Replying to comments can be a great way to keep communication open with followers, to show readers that you care about what they have to say, and to get people coming back to your site.
However, if people don’t receive your comment replies, it’s really not helping you at all to spend the time replying to comments.
When using self-hosted WordPress, there is a box at the bottom of posts that gives commentors the ability to check the box to have comment replies emailed to them.
If you have not added a comment reply plugin to your site, when a user checks this box they will get every single comment left on that post emailed to them. This causes the commenters’ email to become flooded with comments that have nothing to do with the comment they left on the post and can be really annoying if that particular post gets a lot of comments.
To remedy this, here are few plugin options for comment reply notifications that you can add to your WordPress.org site to keep the communication open without flooding your readers’ inboxes.
ReplyMeÂ – with this plugin you can modify the settings to change the subject line, message, and format of the email. To change the settings go to Dashboard–>Settings–>ReplyMe.
One thing to note with this plugin is that you must ensure that nested comments are enabled. To do this go to Dashboard–>Settings–>Discussion, and then in the section titled â€œOther Comment Settingsâ€, make sure the box â€œEnable threaded (nested) commentsâ€ is checked.
Comment Reply Notification â€“ with this plugin after it’s installed you have to change the settings before comment replies will be emailed. To change the settings go to Dashboard–>Settings–>Comment Reply Notification. Here you can select the option you want for emailed comment replies.
You can also edit the subject line for the comment reply and the notification message within the settings of the plugin.
Â ReplyMail â€“ with this plugin you can modify the subject line and content of the email in the settings. To change the settings go to Dashboard–>Settings–>ReplyMail.
After making changes to any of the above plugins be sure to hit the save button.
The format of each emailed comment reply from these 3 plugins is different but they all serve the same purpose: to get your reply to the commentor.
So, add one of these plugins (not all) to your site and keep the conversation going.
Do you make a point to reply to comments left on your blog?
This is helpful. I’m changing over, and I was going to start stalking ERS for some great plug in options.
Glad to hear you are making the WP switch. There are many plugins and sometimes it can be overwhelming to figure out which one to use.
Very helpful, Jessica!
These are great tips. Thanks for sharing. One of the best things about moving to WP.org from WP.com for me was the ability to respond to comments.
For me the ability to have comments emailed was a great benefit for WP.org.
There is also WP Thread Comment, which is what I use. Another option that does the same thing.
Glad to hear you are already using a plugin for comment replies.
Great tips. I wouldn’t want to get called out by a bloggy friend for not having a reply plug-in 😉
I’m sure they were just trying to help you out.
I know you were! 🙂
Love this! Stumbled…
Thank you Kristi!
All awesome tips! Yes, I do make it a point to reply to comments and I love having the plugin option so people will get emails notifying them of that. I had no idea when I was on wp.com – until you clued me in – that people didn’t get an email notification. I may have cried.
At least I got you to make the switch over to WP.org. I know you are happier now with your fancy design and your comment reply emails.
WP has so many different options that it gets a little overwhelming. Thanks for breaking it down.
Great post and well said! I have wanted to add a comment reply plugin for the longest time but kept putting it off because I couldn’t decide on a plugin. That’s going to change now. I’m going to install one of the plugins you outlined in your post. Thanks so much for this!
Deciding what plugin to use can sometimes be so difficult since there are many to pick from.
Great post, Jessica. I do make it a point to reply to my comments. If people take the time to read and comment, then of course I’m going to show that I care and reply.
And having a plugin installed will ensure that they get your comment reply.
I always certainly try to respond to comments on my blog. I was so good about it when I was at home, but since I have gone back to school and have little time I have faltered in this respect. I think it is very important and I always appreciate it when people take the time to respond to my comments.
Sometimes life gets in the way of blogging.
It is like you were reading my mind today. I have been searching for options for my self hosted word press site and this is helpful. Thanks a bunch!
You’re welcome! Glad I could help.
Great post, Jessica. And good tip on the need to set comment reply notification to actually do it. It’s an odd setting in that plugin and I bet a lot of people miss it.
It is odd that you have to change the settings for the plugin which is why I added instructions for each plugin. I thought it would make it easier for people.
Good stuff Jessica. So many wordpress plugins. Posts like this definitely help.
Thank you Tim!
thanks Jess! I totally needed this! 🙂
Excellent post! That’s one of the reasons I wanted to switch to WordPress. Now I have Replyme, though my site loading time is too slow right now. I need to get that remedied so I have more time to reply. 🙂
I hope you get your site loading time resolved.
Yes, this is so important to me too!! I’m on Blogger, but I have Disqus installed…as far as I know, everyone gets my replies back, I hope so anyway.
For some reason I never get comment replies from Disqus. No idea why and I’ve even talked to Disqus about this and they were no help.