( By Kim)
…But I am doing away with DISQUS.
Sometime ago I when I scrolled across a couple of my favourite blogs www.michaelhyatt.com and www.revivenations.org/blog , I was shocked to notice what they did! Both had the same commenting platform that we use for our blog i.e. Disqus, and both the blogs decided to do away with it. Obviously they had their reasons to do so, but I thought that was a very big blunder! After all, isn’t opening your blogpost to onsite comments one of the top 5 (or 3 or 2 or the no. 1) rule for bloggers?
But I have got news. We have decided to follow suit.
First, an update about our progress
We pray about our blog and take it seriously. Our blog had a very good year in 2014.
Last year we released a comprehensive media resource for churches and ministries and we decided to give it free to all our subscribers. (It is still available free for all new sign ups on our blog).
This apart, we made a lot of design changes on our blog to make it more user friendly. ( Since I come from a design background, all these matter a lot to me.)
1. The initial green theme colour was done away with. This gave us room to add more white space on our homepage.
2. The font size of our posts was increased and we even changed our font face.
3. The pictures uploaded with each post were given emphasis by increasing it’s size and positioning it higher on each post.
4. The Sign up box was pushed right up on the LHS panel.
From the content per se, we ensured that we were consistent in our posting. The posts were deliberately made of lesser words ( except this one!) and with more personalisation, both of which I feel will continue to be a huge blogging trend.
We tried new things
Another exciting thing we did was to try our hand at video posts. We have not been able to remain consistent with it, but we are happy that at least a beginning was made.
And then just last week we moved our blog from Feedburner to Madmini which has opened a huge platform of customisation possibilities for our emailers.
This helped us.
A report from WordPress showed us that Subscribers and Traffic on our blog jumped up phenomenally compared to our previous years. We had subscribers and visitors from all across the globe. We praise God for this. And we also thank God for a couple of hands who work behind the scenes selflessly to help us run this blog without expecting anything in return.
Didn’t reflect in comments
But having said all of the above, we hardly saw any increase in the comments on Disqus. We had people – some we knew, some we didn’t, connecting with us through mails, Whatsapp, social media and verbally, telling us that how posts on our blogs were ministering to them. But this did not really reflect in the onsite Disqus comments!
Recently I was talking to a 12 year old who was telling me how much our blog posts are blessing him, and he said, “I feel sad that nobody is reading your blog.”
I said, “Hey, that’s not the truth.” And he told me bluntly, “Oh ya? But I don’t see any comments.”
I don’t blame the teenager, since I too had a similar thinking. Whenever I am checking a blog by someone I don’t know personally, I look at the line up of posts and when I see no or very few comments, I assume that no one is reading the blog! But as I learned, that may not be the true picture.
In the process I also realised that people are commenting or liking the same posts when we put them as links on our social media accounts. And so that’s where we will read and reply to your comments henceforth instead of Disqus.
But as they say, never say never. Right now we are testing and who knows we may have Disqus back again.
Till then, bye bye Disqus