Like most people I have built up a considerable amount of my free traffic through forum commenting. When done correctly it can bring a great amount of quality traffic your way and you can build up the traffic for your future.
I first started forum commenting back in 2005 and also wrote The Mega Marketing Launcher showing how easy it is to build traffic with forum marketing in 2009 (you can grab it here).
It has also been widely promoted through ebooks as an excellent way to build up your traffic for free especially if you are list building.
I actually built my first 6,000 subscribers via forum commenting so it does work. The idea is that you offer some value to a forum community in exchange for having your website links in your signature.
You are making the forum more popular for the owner and enhancing their visitor activity and you are getting traffic in exchange. Everyone is happy and you are both in a partnership together.
And as long as you don’t just post a load of rubbish just to get your link out there then there shouldn’t be a problem.
What if things go wrong?
So I have successfully posted for many years and never had any issues at all. But at the same time I had not done it for niche forums for some time just those in the internet marketing niche.
So you think same old system things can’t be that bad can they?
Well you wouldn’t think so after all they need you more than you need them as their traffic is nowhere near as high as internet marketing forums.
So in the last three years I have tried it in three different niches and it has been pure hell. And I wanted to share this with you in case you are considering this or have had your fingers burnt yourself….
Attempt #1 – Disney World Fans Blog
I can’t remember the name of this as it is a couple of years ago. Just like many forums have now to protect themselves against spam you had to have a comment count of so many before you could add a signature.
So I did and I got to the 30 comments needed and they were all useful ones too that I had put a lot of sweat and tears into. Then on my first comment with a signature I was banned within the hour!
And had a very threatening message telling me to stop trying to steal his customers!!! Seriously?
We had a very similar Alexa rank and it would have suited us both perfectly.
Then six months later when I came to sell the site because I had flipped it on Flippa he would post really nasty comments on the Flippa listing and even told the Flippa users that he would do me a favour in taking it off my hand for $100 when it sold for $15000.
And I must admit it really put me off forum commenting but I still did it again….
Attempt #2 – Weight Loss Niche
I have been in and out of the weight loss niche many times and have been back involved in it for the last six months or so.
I have always been a fan of Minimins.com because it targeted the UK market and as I am a local site it was great for getting me lots of SEO traffic.
So I signed up and had to spend months getting my post count up to the 50 allowed to post and I posted my first thread with a signature this week and today I receive this:
And it hits you hard. How dare they ban you when you have contributed to the forum, followed all the rules, added lots of free content to their site and then just like that you go to do your daily updates and you are BANNED.
Yet you see others STILL DOING IT, writing their updates in broken English but as their site is not of the same quality of your own they stay put on the site!
I only used to spend 20 minutes a day on the forums, stopped outsourcing it as I couldn’t control the quality and as a result could get 100 new daily visitors to my site. Well for the hassle that now comes with it I just can’t be bothered with it anymore.
Maybe all those that use forum commenting as a SEO method ruined it for those that do it properly. Or maybe these companies just don’t like competition.
Either way I won’t be recommending them in the future.
So if you have a niche site and want to use forum commenting really think about it and ask yourself whether or not it is worth it or not.