Enabling – and encouraging – your visitors to contribute to your website through comments is a great way to develop an interactive and engaging website, and build a regular audience. And a powerful way to gain invaluable feedback so you can adjust your website to meet the needs and expectations of your audience.
Although I had a Guestbook on my website, Chris Korte’s New Zealand Genealogy Project, it was not really adding to the website, with comments being viewed on Rootsweb. It was obtaining some comments, but relatively few. Also, because I did not have an email link, I did not review visitor comments frequently enough.
- The comments are stored and the scripts processed on htmlCommentBox, not Rootsweb. Rootsweb limits the processing of some code needed for adding visitor comments to a web page.
- The same code script can be inserted on the pages where you want to get and display visitor comments. Only comments for that page are displayed.
- You are emailed when visitors leave a comment, providing an alert.
- Moderation of comments is easy; that is approval of comments so visitors can view.
- The code can be modified to meet different requirements. I have a new Guestbook, and can now accept visitor comments on Family notes pages (e.g. see comments on biographical notes for Korte family). In addition, I am able to show recent comments from the whole site on the home page.
- Visitors can be emailed automatically when a person replies to their comment.
If visitors provide comments to the pages I have set up, it will be easy to add additional code so comments can be added to other pages. I am waiting to see how useful it is for visitors.
Visitors adding comments to this blog is easy. I hope it will be just as easy now on my website, Chris Korte’s New Zealand Genealogy Project.