It’s been a bit since we focused on a WP Plugin of the Month, but we’re back and committed to adding new ones for you to check out each and every month. Let’s start with AntiSpam Bee. If you’re like most website owners, you’re probably sick of dealing with spam comments. Even if you automate the process with tools such as Akismet and Capturly, you’ll still run into posts attempting to sneak through.
How can you give your site visitors a chance to engage via conversation but still avoid all the spam inherent with any website? Antispam Bee does the heavy hitting for you.
Hackers try every means possible to reach you and scam you. Although it’s impossible to track every type of unwanted contact, Statista estimates around 283 billion spam emails daily. Those without scruples will try to post their message on your WordPress site, hoping something sneaks through.
AntiSpam Bee Top Features
Antispam Bee is one of the best and most effective free spam control plugins we’ve found. Not only is it free of charge, but you won’t have to view ads and it is Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliant.
You’ll find numerous support documents to help you install and configure the plugin without issues. WordPress.org also boasts some support threads for when you run into trouble and need help. For example, find out what to do if someone’s comment goes to spam and it shouldn’t have or conflicts with other plugins.
Top features include:
- Ability to trust pre-approved commenters
- Set to trust those with a Gravatar
- Factor in how long it takes to formulate a comment
- Allow specified languages
- Block some countries
- Treat BBCode with links as spam
- Delete spam automatically
- Exclude trackbacks and pingbacks from spam detection
Want to be part of the process of developing the Antispam Bee plugin? Contribute to development on GitHub by pulling a bug support request or updating other elements as needed.
How to Configure Antispam Bee
Installing and setting up Antispam Bee couldn’t be easier. Login to your dashboard and navigate to Plugins/Add New. Search for “Antispam Bee” and hit the “Install Now” blue button. You can recognize the plugin from the bee in a Superman cape logo.
Activate the plugin.
Go to “Settings” and a new page will pop up containing the different features of Antispam Bee.
Most of the basic features simply require you checking off a box. You can trust approved commenters who regularly contribute, trust those with a gravatar, get notified of spam and any number of other options.
Some of the features other antispam plugins might not offer for free include blocking comments from specific countries and allowing them only in a specified language.
The plugin is 100% free to download without the premium upgrades of many other WordPress plugins seeking to stop spam comments. However, part of the free perk is contributing what you can. If you aren’t well-versed in how to write code, then your role may be reporting bugs you come across.
On the other hand, if you are a developer, you can pull tags and fix issues, making the software an open source one that morphs and changes as those using it ask for additions and changes.
It’s doubtful even a beginner would need help installing and using Antispam Bee, but if you find you do, you might want to hire a developer to make adjustments for you. Your only cost would be what they charge you to get things up and running.
Why It Won Plugin of the Month
We chose Antispam Bee as the plugin of the month because it is one of the better functioning antispam plugins on the market. We also considered the following factors when choosing between various ones:
- Zero cost to users
- Constant improvements
- Ability to contribute on GitHub and work on the software
- Ease of install
- Simple settings with checkboxes
- Doesn’t take a lot of space on the server
The software also has mainly positive, five-star reviews on WordPress.org. People said it worked well for basic comment needs. The zero price point gives even beginner website owners a chance to eliminate spam and focus on the customers making valid comments.
We also like the intuitive layout of the settings page and the way you can just check a box to add features as needed. Finally, the dashboard itself is customizable, making the plugin not only easy to use but also putting analytics at your fingertips without any additional coding required.
If looking into this plugin, note there are nearly 200 reviews on WordPress.org alone. People install the software and like it, with a few comments that they hated it. The one-star reviews are so rare as to be potentially from competitors or folks who wouldn’t be happy with any feature of the plugin no matter how free or helpful.
We tried out the software and it was easy to set up and seemed to almost immediately start catching some of the spam comments we’d been manually deleting.
Best Antispam Practices
Installing Antispam Bee or some other spam plugin is a great first step to stopping spam on your comments. However, you should also utilize additional options to reduce the number of nonsense comments coming through. You can add Akismet to get rid of some of the repeat offenders, install firewalls for those with malicious intent and disable links on comments.
With the help of this plugin and best practices, your site will come alive with conversation. Engage your users but protect your time from handling spam.
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