I know most bloggers are fans of the popular commentluv plugin. I am one of them. In fact, it’s the most favorite plugin I have right now and I have no plans to get rid of it. Commentluv has done so much in taking my blog to where it is today barely after 5 months. But there is a problem! Just read on as I show you what that is and how to salvage it.
CommentLuv attracts comments from visitors that are link-hungry. One of the reasons readers leave comments on your blog is to create links back to their blogs as this is an important factor in their off-page SEO strategies. While this plugin attracts comments giving you a more solid social proof, it also attracts SEO dangers that must be taken care of.
CommentLuv Plugin creates external links
To reward commentators, commentluv creates a link back to their sites following the approval of their comments. While you have full control over the links on your own site (internal links), you don’t have any control over the sites that you are linking to through this plugin.
Over time these websites may shut down or their URL structure may change without redirects being implemented resulting in a 404 error or broken/dead links. What this means is you are sending visitors to an error page. This has bad effects and can damage the usability of your blog.
Usability is an important factor in search engines algorithm. This enables them send users to sites with valuable contents and user friendliness. As the search engine spiders crawl your site from link to link, if they come across many broken links it raises a red flag.
Blogs with a few broken links may be considered normal by search engines. However, excessive dead links on a website may be suspected of being a low quality website. And this will not escape the careful search engine spiders. Indexing and ranking of your blog are thereby affected.
CommentLuv plugin creates internal links
While replying to comments, this plugin helps you link to other pages on your blog. This internal linking helps readers find more information thereby reducing bounce rate and increasing their time on site.
You may do some updates on your blog and eliminated some pages without redirecting but links to those pages are still floating around on other pages of your blog. This will create internal broken links with negative effect on usability. Like external dead links, internal broken links can’t escape search engine spiders.
CommentLuv plugin dead links Remedy
There are two ways to go about this:
1 – Set commentluv links to nofollow
This is smply done by unchecking the Enable DoFollow checkboxes on your commentluv plugin settings page. When the search engine spider sees nofollow on a link, it does the following:
- Does not follow the link.
- Does not count the link towards it’s popularity score in their ranking engine
- Does not include the link text in the relevancy score for those keywords
2 – Use a broken link checker
I have opted for this option with this broken linking checker. What this does is send me an alert whenever a broken link is detected. So my blog is constantly being kept broken-link free.
If you use commentluv plugin or use any other strategy to link to external or internal resources, it is safer to constantly search and correct dead links before they start transmitting death to your blog.
Commentluv on its own is not the fault. The only concern is we cannot control those sites linked to.
What do you use to handle broken links on your blog? I’d like to hear your thoughts on this in the comment box. Also share this post with friends on social media.