I thought the idea of adding Facebook comments to your blog would be cool because most people are already logged in to Facebook when browsing the internet. When they land on your website and see their picture next to the comment form, they are more likely to leave a useful comment on your blog.
Well, the problem is that Google doesn’t read these comments. When Googlebot comes to spider your pages it doesn’t see the text inside the Facebook social plugin. Basically, the content left by people who used Facebook to comment on your blog is useless in terms of SEO.
Google claims that it does use social signals to help you with rankings, so one could argue that if people comment on your blog, it could lead to more exposure for your website since it posts to their status on Facebook. Plus when someone likes the comment it could also potentially bring more traffic.
To be honest I like the idea of Google being able to read comments left on my blog better. From my experience comments can greatly help you with search engine rankings because it makes your site look busy and popular to Google.
I wonder why Facebook doesn’t just offer some kind of php code that would make the content readable by Google (I think I have an idea why lol)
Anyway, I was thinking about creating a plugin for WordPress that would make this possible somehow but not sure if it’s doable yet.
It would be awesome if the comments posted in the Facebook comment form could be somehow caught by WordPress and added as normal comments instead.
The question is would Facebook have a problem with that?
To me it seems like they want to own the content generated by their users (nothing wrong with that except the fact it’s intended to be displayed on my site). If there was a plugin created that would transform the comments into static content, they would no longer have control over it.
I am going to look into this and see if something can be done, but I am afraid that Facebook could file a DMCA complaint against me if such plugin was developed.
As you probably noticed I have Facebook comments on this blog and I like it, but I prefer when people use the default comment form over Facebook. It adds value to the page plus Google can easily spider the content generated.
Another benefit of Google being able to read comments left on your blog is that users will add more relevant keywords to your post, and that can help you rank for other long tail phrases that you have not thought of at the time of writing the content.
More content and keywords will get you more traffic, which is something you give up when allowing people to use Facebook to comment on your posts. I might be wrong and maybe Google has a way to read these signals, but for now I am betting on the fact that they don’t.
I noticed that TechCrunch switched completely to Facebook comments on their posts. But their site gets massive traffic anyway, so it probably doesn’t make any difference to them.
You can easily make a quick test that proves Google doesn’t read their comments. If you copy and paste one of the comments left into the Google search box, it won’t find the page that it was left on.
Hopefully Facebook will make some changes to their comments plugin and allow us to use the content on our pages. If not I might just drop it from my blog in the future.