A couple of weeks before I totally removed the Disqus comment system from this blog site.
It wasn’t a decision I made on impulse, but lately, I had started to look for alternatives to Disqus comments for this WordPress blog.
While there wasn’t any serious problem with the Disqus comment system but I felt the necessity to move on.
Primarily to speed up the website speed and next to make it easier for the visitors to comment.
In this blog post, I am sharing my story, how I started to use Disqus for managing comments and how I came to remove it from my site.
The need for Disqus – Disqus with Jekyll
I started learning, writing and publishing blogs in 2015. At that time I got fond of blogging with Jekyll – a static site generator.
Jekyll being a static site generator had several good sides and few limitations. One of the limitations was the inability to comment on the articles.
Jekyll didn’t have the inbuilt feature to allow comments and manage them. So the Jekyll bloggers had to rely on some modification or third-party comment system like Disqus to enable the visitor to be able to comment on the article.
Hence why I had to use the Disqus system with Jekyll. As Disqus is a popular commenting platform available for free suited my use case of making commenting system active on my blog.
Moving comments from Jekyll blog to WordPress blog
After blogging with Jekyll for few years, I migrated my blog to WordPress last year.
Moving comments from the Jekyll blog to the new WordPress system was actually painless as Disqus handled this very well.
Since I was blogging on the same domain, I just had to make sure the Disqus installation is complete with the new WordPress site.
I took advantage of using the Disqus’ WordPress Plugin and all the comments were smoothly migrated to the new blogging platform.
I must applaud Disqus for making this easier to move comments from one blogging platform to the other.
Why I started not liking Disqus
Well, everything was going as it should be.
Disqus was actively handling the comment system as expected and I was also getting good engagement with the articles.
page load speed with Disqus
But I always felt that the website could be a bit faster if there was no Disqus comment system in my blog. Speed test sites like Google Page Speed and gtmetrix.com always pointed out Disqus resources troubling the load speed of the site.
visitor must be signed in to comment
Actually, this can be a strength of Disqus!
As anyone who wants to comment must sign in or create an account with Disqus to be able to comment on the article.
This is good to prevent spam and random comments but this will limit the visitor from commenting.
As s/he have to have an account before commenting some visitors mightn’t find this idea worth it. And they will just skip commenting.
Removing the Disqus plugin
Importing the Disqus comments to WordPress system + Disqus Uninstallation
Before I uninstalled the Disqus plugin I made sure I imported the comments I had with Disqus to my WordPress database.
Since I had enabled the comments syncing on at the WordPress Discussion Settings, my Disqus comments were automatically synced to the website database.
And when I removed Disqus all the comments were there but as Default WordPress comments but faster and clean.
Before and after results
So, I did few tests before removing the Disqus plugin from the site and after removing.
Below are the search results in the image.
Please note that all other plugins (cache, speed etc) and settings remain the same for both tests except the Disqus plugin.
Tweaking the WordPress comment system
To prevent unwanted spam and make the comment management system easier, I installed the Yoast Comment Hacks and Google ReCaptcha plugins.
Doing this I got multiple functionalities of managing the comments and preventing the spam comments with the Google ReCaptcha human verification.