One of the most common frustrations for site owners is getting spam comments their website. Spambots bounce around the internet, seeking comment forms to fill out. Site owners are left to sort through the accumulation of gibberish comments cluttering up their website database. No one has time for that.
Fortunately, there is a practical solution. Akismet is an anti-spam plugin for blog comments from Automattic, the folks behind WordPress. It’s also one of the most popular plugins, with over 1 million active installations.
Here’s how Akismet works.
High Level Pattern Detection
Akismet learns from spam patterns from hundreds of thousands of sites, and has been since 2005. It knows what spam comments look like by analyzing the content of the comments, how comment forms are filled out, the IP and email addresses.
Comments that are designated as spam are automatically filtered to the comment spam folder, meaning you never have to deal with them. The accuracy rate of spam detection is virtually 100%, with very few false positives ever occurring.
For non-commercial and personal sites, this service is free (or whatever you want to donate). Commercial sites are $5 a month, and enterprise level sites are $50 a month.
Here’s how to install Akismet on your own site.
Using Akismet To Eliminate Spam Comments
Step One: Install Akismet on your WordPress site.
Step Two: Activate the Akismet plugin.
Step Three: There should be a big blue button on your plugins screen reading, Activate your Akismet account. Click that.
Step Four: You’ll be prompted to manufacture a API key, or enter one if already have one. Click the button that reads, Get Your API Key.
Step Five: This link takes you to http://akismet.com/wordpress/ where another button says Get An Akismet API Key. This will take you to a screen where you can sign up for a WordPress.com account or sign up for an account. You will need a WordPress.com account to get an API key.
Step Six: If you’re signing up for a WordPress.com account, enter your email, username and password.
Step Seven: You’ll be taken to a screen where you can name the price you want to pay for Akismet. Their suggested price is $36 a year. If you have a personal blog, you may move the slider to $0 or another amount.
Step Eight: If you are paying anything today, enter your credit card information, and click Continue.
Step Nine: A modal will pop up with your API key. Copy that, and paste it into your Akismet Settings page on your regular WordPress site.
Step Ten: You’re done! You can adjust the strictness of the settings, if you want to review spam comments, or if you never want to see them.
Although there are hundreds of anti-spam plugins, Akismet remains one of the most efficient ways to stop spam comments on your WordPress site.