Leaving Work Behind

10 Reasons I Have Switched To Livefyre

Written by Tom Ewer on April 16, 2012. 57 Comments

10 Reasons I Have Switched To LivefyreTime for a confession – I am a comments whore. I love interacting with my readers, and I am disappointed when what I consider to be great posts get few comments (like Margaret’s guest post last week, which was brilliant!).

I had never really put any thought into the comments system on Leaving Work Behind until last week, when I wrote a post for the ManageWP blog – Choosing The Right Comments System To Maximize Blog Engagement. I did quite a bit of research for that article, and in my opinion me the clear winner was Livefyre. I try to take my own medicine whenever possible, so the next logical step was to fire up the Livefyre system on this blog.

You may however be wondering why I have chosen to go with Livefyre. And you may be wondering whether it will actually have a positive impact on interaction and engagement here. Below are the reasons why I have made the change, and why I believe that it will be a good thing for Leaving Work Behind – complete with screenshots stolen straight off the Livefyre site! ;)

1. Comments Consolidation

Online discussion and debate now takes place over many different mediums. There’s no point fighting change, so why not work with it instead?

Livefyre Comments Consolidation

Livefyre uses clever algorithms to grab related conversations from social media outlets and pull them into the comments section. I do not yet know how effective this system is – only time will tell.

2. Tagging

Any regular reader of Leaving Work Behind will know that I am a big fan of Twitter – it is just so easy to connect and interact with people. Livefyre emulates one of Twitter’s best features perfectly by allowing commenters to “tag” people from directly within comments (just like you would include someone’s handle in a tweet to get their attention):

Livefyre Tagging

3. Real Time Commenting

This is pretty awesome – fresh comments display in real time. No refreshing for Livefyre users. You may wonder if this is a particularly beneficial feature, but if it takes someone 5-10 minutes to read a post, new comments may well have been posted in that time. It’s certainly more useful for larger sites, but a cool feature nonetheless.

4. Notifications

If you have been following this blog for any length of time, you will know that I respond to the vast majority of comments. But what’s the point in commenting if you never get to read the response? Livefyre has a pretty slick notifications system, and although I’m not sure how it works if you sign in via a social media account, I do know that Livefyre users receive an email by default if someone replies to their comment:

Livefyre Notifications

5. Multiple Sign In Options

Like most commenting systems of its ilk, Livefyre allows commenters to sign in via various methods. If you’re into social media, you can use your Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn account. Otherwise, you can use Google, OpenID, or sign up to an actual Livefyre account.

6. Post Promotion

People who leave comments get a link to their most recent blog post:

Livefyre Post Promotion

‘Nuff said.

7. Comments Sharing

Ever commented on a blog post and been stunned by your pure incisiveness? With Livefyre, you can share your wisdom with your followers at the click of a button.

Livefyre Comment Sharing

I don’t know how often this is utilized, but having the option surely can’t be a bad thing.

8. Crawlability

Yes, that is a made up word, but I’m running with it. Livefyre is apparently “the only platform that gives you SEO credit for all the comments happening on your site, Facebook and Twitter”.

I’m not entirely sure what to make of that statement, and whether Livefyre actually offers any additional SEO benefits beyond other comments platforms, but with the SEO community’s current obsession with social signals, it certainly can’t be a bad thing.

9. Spam Protection

In my humble opinion, Akismet is crap. On Leaving Work Behind, it is constantly spamming perfectly legitimate comments (usually for no obvious reason). I hate the idea of someone taking the time to submit a comment, only to find that it doesn’t appear. The general consensus seems to be that Livefyre’s spam protection system is stellar, so I look forward to an improvement on that front.

10. Awesome Moderation Features

I have only just started fiddling with the backend of Livefyre, but filtering, moderating and replying to comments looks like an absolute piece of cake:

Livefyre Moderation

Downsides?

Nothing is perfect. There are three potential shortcomings to using Livefyre that I took note of when deciding whether or not to make the switch:

1. Backlinks

Livefyre provides no backlink to a commenter’s site (by default). This doesn’t particularly bother me – the LinkBack feature automatically provides a link to a commenter’s latest blog post, and besides, I am not interested in commenters who just want to gain a link back to their site.

2. Import Formatting

I can be rather anal when it comes to grammar, sentence structure, and so on. I like to use carriage returns and other such structural elements. Unfortunately, the import process has removed all such things from my previous comments, which leaves me with a whole lot of hefty blocks of text. I don’t like this at all.

3. No Emoticons

I used to hate smilies and emoticons, before I realized that they are a very effective way of conveying meaning behind words that might otherwise be ambiguous. Now I have grown rather attached to them. Livefyre does not have emotions. Boo.

First Impressions – Who Knows?

I’m not really in a position to offer you first impressions yet, given that I have not seen or left a single comment yet! I’m going to jump right in and start testing the features out now.

As always, I hope you will join me in the comments section to let me know your thoughts!

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57 Responses to “10 Reasons I Have Switched To Livefyre”

  1. tomewer
    April 16, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    @jennalanger You have just earned your most recent Livefyre convert! Would love to know what you think about the post…

  2. jonwiggens
    April 16, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    This look really interesting Tom – I have to admit I hadn’t even heard of LiveFyre before seeing your post. I’m interested to hear how it goes over the coming days and weeks.

  3. ChrisWiegman
    April 16, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    Have you seen any performance hit? What about the no-follow links with Google? It seems like most folks I talk to who pass up on Livefyre do so for one of those 2 reasons and I’m just curios as to what your experience has been with them.

  4. deaconbradley
    April 16, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    Love it Tom. I recently switched too and I’m digging it. The only downside in my opinion is you can’t reply to comments by replying to emails (like Disqus). 
     
    Also, the twitter comment ‘syncing’ works great, but I’ve never once had a Facebook comment synced back to my site. Have you ever seen this work?

    • Dhara Mistry
      April 16, 2012 at 7:43 pm

       @deaconbradley Hey Deacon, reply by email feature is definitely on our mnid and should be released in the future. As for Facebook SS comments, could you send the link of the post where this is happening, and any other details to support@livefyre.com? We’ll be happy to look in to this for you.

    • tomewer
      April 17, 2012 at 6:59 pm

       @deaconbradley To be honest I’ve haven’t been on many sites that use Livefyre (from memory, just yours and @Jeffrey Trull’s), so I’m probably not the right person to ask!

  5. Dhara Mistry
    April 16, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    Hey Tom, we’re pumped to have you rocking Livefyre! Thanks for the shout out and for taking the time to write this post.
     
    We’ve tons of new admin and stream features lined up for ya, so kindly stay tuned! And, I hear you for the use of emoticons (I love them too :). HTML integration and carriage returns is definitely on our roadmap, and should be available in the future. I’ll definitely talk to my dev team about maintaining the returns in the comments during the import to see if we can roll a fix for that in the future.
     
    Once again, thank you for writing this post, and please don’t hesitate to reach out if you need anything from us. We’re here for ya!

  6. Jeffrey Trull
    April 16, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    I’ve been using livefyre for a few months now, and I’m definitely enjoying it. Admittedly I’m not using all the features you’ve described, but I think there are a lot of benefits.
     
    I’d never though I’d see “lack of emoticons” on anyone’s list of cons. But I think you have a bit of a point :)

  7. Marshall Davis
    April 16, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    Congrats on the switch, Tom! I tried livefyre for a bit, but switched to commentluv. I don’t think one is better than the other, necessarily, but commentluv premium does cost money, where livefyre is free.
     
    Livefyre should be a great addition to your site and definitely has some slick features!

  8. tonygreene113
    April 16, 2012 at 11:34 pm

    Thanks for joining the team. Glad to have another site to join in on some really good discussions.

  9. mellissathomas
    April 20, 2012 at 3:36 am

    Great article, Tom. I’d been curious about Livefyre for a while, and your research answered a lot of my questions. I use Commentluv myself, but haven’t really seen it action yet (I’m like you – I love comments, but some of my posts are devoid of them.). Also like you, I love emoticons, so I boo with you on that. ;)

  10. Above Ground Pools
    April 20, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    I’ve seen a lot of posts explaining someone’s switch to Livefyre and this is the best one I’ve read. You covered nearly everything and were honest about what you were unsure of.
     
    I have had my comments moved to the spam folder before, which I learned about because I love reading the commentluv website and felt compelled to complain about it. He was gracious enough to look for me and okayed my username. The issue was a few months later with the new updated Commentluv it forced you to use a two word username and my comments were again not showing up and I sadly was too frustrated to go back to their website after not being able to take part in the conversation.
     
    Now that I’m thinking about it, I do miss reading their posts.

  11. andykinsey
    April 21, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    I much prefer disqus as a discussion engine for my blog http://seoandy.com which is (in my view) the easiest discussion engine around, second only to the default supplied with wordpress. 

  12. kevinfoulds
    April 21, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    Great post Tom.
     
    Like many below I use Comment luv and do not see the reason to move as they also provide plenty that enables you to comment on different social markets. Keep up the good work..

  13. Charles Montgomery
    April 24, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    I am definitely interested in hearing how this pans out after a few weeks of testing… I subscribed, so we’ll be watching for an update!

  14. iRajChowdary
    May 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm

    livefyre is a good commenting tool I agree but how far that is comparable to disqus..?

    • tomewer
      May 4, 2012 at 8:32 am

       @iRajChowdary There are more Livefyre vs. Disqus articles out there than you can shake a stick at – I’m sure a quick Google search will serve you well :-)

  15. iRajChowdary
    May 2, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    And I have one more question, after how many comments livefyre system comes up with commentators blog url..?

  16. Takiyah Noble
    July 25, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    Hi Tom,
    nice article… I have jumped back and forth between commenting systems over the years, and admittedly… I have never just taken the time to really investigate the extent of their features due to time constraints. So, I’m really glad that you have written this insightful post. It has given me the inspiration to really investigate LiveFyre again as life settles down a little.

    Just wanted your thoughts and opinions on these two topics:

    1. HUMAN SPAM COMMENTERS: Urgh… nothing frustrates me more than taking the time to write a good quality article and then having some lazy loof come and leave some flattery comment (that doesn’t add an ounce of value to the article) with a backlink to a piece of garbage or a vitriolic comment on your work with a backlink to some piece of garbage.

    I never turn comments on or accept comments on content-rich SEO rich pages. But I have decided that the simple truth is that comments are going to require some human intervention. Do you find yourself chained to your LiveFyre dashboard with moderating HUMAN spam commenters since the system works real time?

    2. Most Recent Blog Post Feature: How do you feel about the “most recent blog post” feature? Do you find yourself moderating comments simply because of a person’s last blog post entry regardless of the value of the comment?

    I don’t know if I could really add a really great comment from someone whose most recent blog post was, “How I Made $386,457.28 in 48 Hours with No Experience.” LOL! SMH.

  17. Elijah
    September 25, 2012 at 6:55 am

    There are other sites that explain that Livefyre is not just for them, and then I find your article promoting its use. Now I can’t decide. :(

  18. Trent
    November 15, 2012 at 9:52 am

    Tom,

    Thanks for the post. It’s a few months old now. Have you done any updated posts on how your experience has been with Livefyre now? I’m considering them and would love to have a quick convo and get your unbiased opinion.

    Thanks,
    Trent

  19. Trent
    November 15, 2012 at 9:53 am

    NM, just saw the last comment before me, lol.

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