Comments work as a medium of communication for bloggers with their audience. The default comment box and comment management system in WordPress is old school. It has not changed much for a long period of time and offers less control over user engagement. Even if you use a premium theme there is not much or almost no special functions available for comments.
To make the comment section more attractive and engaging for the site users there are several free and paid plugins available for WordPress. This article I’ve mentioned some of the best comment management plugins available for free.
I’ll start with Disqus because this one is my most favourite also it is one of the popular in this category. Unlike most of the plugins, Disqus actually hosts all the comment on their platform and when you enable it in your blog the default comment system gets disabled. Don’t worry if you want to opt-out of Disqus all the comments will not go away, just remember to sync all comments to your local database from the settings.
For moderation of comments, you have to go to disqus.com and select your blog’s subdomain. There are a bunch of options available for managing comments and you can set custom rules for new comments. The best part is chances of getting a spam comment is very less and there is no need for captcha. This plugin also supports social login feature for a huge list of websites.
It just not makes the comment box real time also adds some cool features to your WordPress blog like social login, trophy system for commenters, spam protection and much more. There is a bunch of premium add-ons available to enhance the capability of wpDiscuz from their official website.
IntenseDebate owned by Automattic is one of most popular multi-platform comment platform available before Disqus and Livefyre (currently owned by Adobe). It has both the option of social login and the native WordPress comment form for users. Automatic email alert and comment moderation by email also included within this plugin.
For users, it has options like comment history, comment voting, profiles and more. Spam protection is powered by Akismet also supports multi-admins for comment moderation.
Formerly known as Google Plus comments for WordPress is not just a single plugin to enhance the discussion system. Now it combines Google Plus+, Facebook, Disqus and native WordPress comments under one roof. Using the plugin is very simple just set up the social APIs you want to use for your blog.
This feature comes with the Jetpack plugin by Automattic, just install the plugin connect it with your WordPress.com account. Enable it from Jetpack settings panel and bingo. The plugin stores the comments locally and social+WordPress.com account also supported by this tool. There are several other amazing features comes packed with Jetpack to improve your blog.
Livefyre is one of my personal favourites but after getting acquired by Adobe things changed a lot. Now they also offer monetization of comments with ads from leading brands around the globe.
If you do know about some other comment plugins please mention them in the comment section.