Sunday, April 28, 2013

Top 5 Features Of Disqus Comments

7:15 AM

You may have noticed i changed the blogs default comment system to Disqus comments this week.The decision to make what is a major change to Spice Up Your Blog was not taken lightly.Comments are important to all bloggers and the feedback from comments can determine the direction we take going forward.On a Help blog like this it's also important to make it easy for people to ask questions and also easy for me to reply.

The change to Disqus probably would have been made earlier, but the comments already left on posts in the archive would have been deleted and for me this wasn't an option.There was an option to use Disqus comments only on new posts, but it looked odd when you went from a post with Blogger comments to a post with Disqus comments and Visa-versa.Recently Disqus added the option to Import all the existing comments onto their system and that was the green light needed for me to make the change.

5 Reasons I Changed From Blogger Comments To Disqus Comments

There are lots of small settings and functions that swayed me to make the change but here are the deciding factors, they may help if your thinking of changing to Disqus.

1. Moderate And Reply Options

When a new comment is posted i receive an Email the same as with Blogger comments however the options to reply to a comment are much more versatile.

Reply by Email - With Disqus i can reply to the comment directly from the email.I click the reply button in my Email and enter my reply directly below the comment as it appears in my inbox , once i click send my reply is posted on the blog.

Reply from the dashboard - When I'm away from the computer for a few hours if i have received for example ten comments i can go to my Disqus dashboard to manage the comments.From here i can read the comments and see which posts the comments were posted on.I can click on each comment and reply or delete the comments from the dashboard, now i am replying to 10 comments on one page without the need to go to the blog.

Direct reply - The default blogger comments do not allow you to reply directly to a comment, this can lead to confusion and i often see bloggers having to use '@' to specify which person the were replying to for example '@Pat...' '@John...' i can now post a reply and it will be attached to the bottom of each comment.

2. 'Comment As' options and attachment options

The Disqus comments allow users to comment as a guest with their Name and URL or if they have a Disqus account they can comment with that profile.But they can also comment with their social network and online profiles.I have provided the options to comment using the following profiles :

*Twitter *Facebook *Yahoo *OpenId (Did You Know Your Blogger URL is an open Id?)

When you leave a comment you can also add an image or video to your comment.

Circled In Red : Comment With Your Social Accounts
Circled In Blue : Set How To View Comments

3. Reactions 

If you share a post on Twitter, Facebook, Digg or any of the main social bookmarks or networks it is displayed as a reaction below the comment area.If for example you share this post on twitter it will be displayed with a link to your Twitter account and a link to your blog or website.Extra encouragement for users to share posts and more posts being shared for the blogger.You also have a 1 click option to share you actual comment on your Twitter and Facebook.

4. Ratings

The rating system is similar to the Facebook option of 'Like This' .Each comment has the option for users to click 'Like This' if they see a comment they like.While this is a nice social feature for your comments it also serves in deciding the order in which your comments are displayed.

I have my comments ordered by 'Popular' so the comment that most people liked Will appear first not the comment posted first.I can also order by date, newest first or oldest first and the user can change how the comments are ordered with the drop down menu show in the image Above.

Circled In Blue : Like This And Reply Options
Circled In Brown : Who Liked The Comment
Circled In Red : Reactions

5. Appearance

We cover many topics on Spice Up Your Blog but the main subject is appearance and Disqus comments simply look better.There are three default styles you can use *Narcisuss *Classic A *Classic B and you can also add custom css to style the appearance or choose color themes to suit your blogs theme.

Notes : If you decide to make the change be sure to click the option 'Import old comments' and follow through to the import page.

The other most popular comment system is Intense Debate and you may want to check them out before changing.

I'm not saying you should change there is nothing wrong with the default blogger comments but if you are looking for more comment options Disqus is a great solution.If you decide to stay with the default comments, there are some Tips and Tricks for Blogger comments you can try.

Note - I recently changed back to Blogger comments (02 Dec 2010) simply because most readers are new Blogger users that would Email me instead of commenting on posts.When i asked why they explained that they were used to Commenting with their Google / Blogger profiles which would be automatically logged in.Yes i also find it strange that someone would find it easier to locate the contact form and fill in the details than use a third party comment system.I still believe Disqus is the best comment system but the readers must always come first so i to make the decision to sacrifice the great features lined out in this post for the most important people, the readers (I'm a real Saint :D ).I still use Disqus on other blogs no so closely related to Blogger such as Social Icon Studio and still recommend Disqus, in fact the installation process has recently become even easier.

Note: If this tutorial worked for you (and it should work), please leave a comment below. Thanks.

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