How to Remove WordPress Comment Author Link (Easy Way)

Want to get rid of unwanted links in comments? Learn how to remove WordPress comment author link. Find your every option in this post and use the suitable one.

If you’ve been working with WordPress, you might have noticed that the default WordPress settings add a comment section. If you’re creating a blog, you’ll see a comment section where users can leave a comment along with their desired URL. Generally, this is an excellent way for your readers to interact and let you know their thoughts about the topic. This is also a huge bonus for your SEO. But in certain cases, this can cause you more harm than good.

So how can a simple WordPress comment author link cause you harm? One reason is, Black Hat SEO operators who are prowling the internet might drop spam links on unsuspecting websites. One of the methods through which they drop their spam links is through the built-in WordPress comment box URL field feature.

Now you know what are the dangers you might possibly face. But no need to worry. In this post, we will discuss how to remove the WordPress comment author link. We will first understand what the issues are, how these work, and how serious can these issues be. Next, we will understand how you can manage these spam website links. Then we will learn how to remove the WordPress comment author link from the frontend and also we’ll also show you a more permanent way to remove the comment URL.

What is the WordPress Comment Author Link?

By default, WordPress allows users to leave a comment on any of your posts. While its a great way to know what your readers think of your post, its also prone to cyber attacks as well. The website URL field, becomes the comment author link. This is the most common source of WordPress spams.

This was designed to allow users with a valid email address to leave a comment on your post. In this way, people can comment without having to expose their identity. While this is a good way to improve user engagement, but the anonymity works as a boon for scammers. They use this to their advantage and leave spammy links through the comments.

Fortunately, WordPress by default has a no-follow attribute for these links. That means it sends a signal to the search engines that they shouldn’t follow links in the individual comments. You might have faced a situation when you click on a link in an individual comment, the website gives you a warning message. This message typically warns you that you’re about to leave the current website you’re on and it might be dangerous.

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How bad can the comment abuse be

Creating and scaling a WordPress blog takes a lot of hard work. The sad thing is that one bad SEO can harm your hard work. There is a large number of users scouring the internet looking to sneak into the URL of any authoritative website. The more popular your blog gets, the more chances it has of attracting unwanted attention. 

This also signals to Google that your site is in need of improvements. It also indicates that your site is not a top-rated authority regardless of the industry. You can imagine how devastating this can be for your business. Since, clicking on these links will the visitors to another page, you will lose your visitors. The whole point of creating a blog and adding valuable content to it is to attract visitors and entertain visitors. The spam links in this way steal your visitors.

Again, if you have a cheap or limited hosting plan, the increased traffic from bots and spammers could break your site. For this reason, we always recommend choosing a good domain and hosting plan.

Now let’s do a quick recap of how bad can comment abuse get:

  • Getting blacklisted by Google
  • Losing visitors
  • Breaking your website

However, to remedy the situation, we have to block all the spammers and accept comments from real people. Having a good hosting plan is always a good idea but we need a way to control or remove the WordPress comment author link

How to control spam comments on WordPress

WordPress has built-in features to help you control spam comments. You can perform the following actions to control spam comments on your WordPress website:

  • Disable comments entirely: You can disable the comments completely if you want. If you want to know how to disable comments in WordPress, go to Settings > Discussion Settings and uncheck the “Allow people to submit comments on new posts” option.
disable wordpress comments completely
  • Only registered users can comment: You can also enable an option where users must be registered in order to comment. To do that, go to Settings > Discussion and look under “Other comment settings” and check the two boxes labeled “Comment author must fill out name and email” and “Users must be registered and logged in to comment
user registration required option
  • Disable comment for the specific post: You can also disable comments for a specific post. To do this, go to the WordPress dashboard > Posts section and find the post whose comments you want to disable. Click on the “Quick Edit” and uncheck the “Allow comments” option.
disabling comments from a post
  • IP Blocking: You can manually block the suspicious IP address. But this is a repetitive process and requires you to keep blocking IP addresses that you might think are suspicious.
  • Disallow comments keys: You can select certain keywords and if these keywords are found, they will be directly added to the trash. There is a settings option that allows you to do this. To do this go to Settings > Discussion Settings > Disallowed Comment Keys, and add the words. If any of these words are found in the content, author name, URL, email, IP address, or browser’s user agent, it will be put in the trash.
  • Hold all comments for moderation: Once a comment has been made, it will require your permission to be posted. Generally, this option is enabled by default, but in case it isn’t you can access it from Settings > Discussions and look for the “Before a comment appears” option. However, if you have a website with large traffic, this might be an impossible task for you.
hold comments for moderation
  • Allow comments of users whose previous comment was approved: You can also enable an option that allows comments from users whose comments were previously approved. This will ease the load on you a little bit if you have high traffic. This option can be found in Settings > Discussions in the “Before a comment appears” section. Just check the box with “Comment author must have a previously approved comment”.

However, for this option to work, you need to enable cookies in order to save the user’s name email address, etc.

  • Filter comments with Akismet: You can also use Akismet to filter out spam comments. Akismet is a WordPress plugin that you need to install. You might be wondering why we’re mentioning another plugin when we’re talking about built-in systems. Well, it’s because, it’s developed by Automattic, the developers of WordPress.

These are some of the built-in options that you can use to remove spam comments or at least filter those out. Unless you remove the URL link to your comment box, you will always receive spam comments and you have to manually remove these comments.

How to hide the WordPress Comment Author Link

There are a few techniques you can use to either hide or prevent the links in the comment from showing up in the published comment section. Although this approach hides the links from the frontend, the links will actually reside in the backend of your WordPress website. This will increase the number of internal no-follow links which could hamper your SEO slightly.

Here we are showing you 2 methods one is the automated method and the other one is manual. You can use either method to hide/remove the WordPress comment author link. You can also use advanced SEO tools like Yoast to identify internal no-follow links.

Method 1: Block comment author URL link using a plugin

There are many tools that help you hide these harmful links in comments. A free plugin called Hide Comment Author Link has many positive reviews. However, the plugin was last updated 2 months ago (while writing this article), and might not be compatible with your version of WordPress. It can, however, block the comment author’s URL from showing up in the comment section.

You can also try another plugin called Comment Link Remove and Other Comment Tools by Quantum Cloud. The plugin can be used for free, but the premium version allows you to remove URL fields and offers additional functions.

Method 2: Block comment author URL link through function.php

You can add some codes to your function.php file to block the comment author URL links. However, if you’re going to change the function.php file, we would strongly recommend using a plugin to do it. Because this file is vital for your WordPress website and if you don’t know what you’re doing, you might get into trouble. Plugins like Syntax Highlighter or Code Snippets could help you out here.

After installing a plugin to help you edit the function.php, open the file and add the following code snippets to it:

/* Remove Website URL in Comments */
add_filter('comment_form', 'remove_url_field');
function remove_url_field($fields){
    if(isset($fields['url']))
       unset($fields['url']);
       return $fields;
}

After you put in the above code, click on the “Save Changes” button. Now the comment author URL link will not be displayed. However, if a visitor fills the form fields, the URL will still be visible to the website admin. The comment author links will be removed from the new comments and existing comments section.

How to remove the website URL field from the WordPress comment form

Now if you want to completely remove the comment author URL link, there is a more permanent solution. You can completely hide/remove the form so users will not be able to fill the form and post comments on your posts.

There are a couple of ways through which you can hide/remove the website URL field from your WordPress comment form. Here are some methods.

Method 1: Look for an Option in Theme (Best Way)

Most of the modern WordPress themes have this easy option. You may get this in your theme settings. Just look into your theme settings/docs or ask your theme support team whether there is this feature in your theme. This is the easiest and best way to disable comment author link in WordPress.

Method 2: Hide the URL field using CSS code

Using a simple CSS code you can hide the URL field of the comment form. The default comment form of WordPress uses a class name of comment-form-URL to display the author’s website URL. You can access your theme’s appearance settings and add a CSS code to hide this.

Go to Appearance > Themes > Customize and find the Additional CSS option. Then add the following code:

.commet-form-url {
	display:none;
}

This code will prevent the website URL field from being displayed. The comment author will not be able to provide a link and thus the link will not be created at all. However, note that we used the class name of the default WordPress comment form. If you’re using another plugin for your form, then this CSS code might not work. In that case, you can try another method.

Method 3: Use a plugin to remove the URL field

Generally, it’s a good idea to use a plugin, but if you keep adding plugins for each function, it will make your site heavy. There’s a plugin called Perfmatters, which is one of the best WordPress optimization plugins. With this plugin, you can remove the website URL field from the standard WordPress comment form and remove links from existing comments as well.

Install the plugin and after it’s activated, go to Settings > Perfmatters menu > Options > General. Then simply scroll down and enable the “Remove comment URLs” option and save.

The plugin also takes care of some maintenance tasks for you. It removes unnecessary WordPress functions like unused styles, javascript codes, feeds, and other things. This boosts your WordPress website speed and performance. Basically it’s a WordPress maintenance service as well.

Conclusion

Comments from real users are super important for your website. On one hand, it allows your users to share what they think about your post or product and on the other hand, it allows you to take in feedback from your users. But unfortunately, there’s a large number of scammers who are scouring the internet just to put spammy links on your site. Many are looking to get backlinks from authorized WordPress sites.

If they manage to include these harmful links on your site, this will drive away your main users and will affect your SEO. If you’ve read this article, you already know how far these spams can get. So it’s best that you take the necessary steps to remedy the situation.

The default WordPress settings are enough to sort out this issue. But if your website is flooding with these comments, it’s best to take a drastic measure. You can either use a plugin or manually insert codes to filter out these spammy links. Remember, you’ve worked too hard on your website to let it go down by spammers.


Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links and we may receive a small commission if you purchase something by following them. However, we recommend services/products that we believe good to serve your purpose.

Staff Author

Staff Author

A team of WordPress enthusiasts led by Arafat Bin Sultan, a seasoned professional with over a decade of experience in tech blogging, content marketing, and video creation.

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