Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments

Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments
Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments

Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments

A thriving comments section is a hallmark of a successful blog or website. It fosters interaction, builds a sense of community, and provides valuable feedback on your content. But sometimes, comment sections can become stagnant, with the same few voices dominating the conversation. A user ranking system can be a great way to incentivize participation, encourage thoughtful comments, and recognize your most engaged users.

This article will guide you through two methods of adding a simple user ranking system for WordPress comments:

  1. Using a Plugin
  2. Creating a Custom System (for Developers)

We’ll also delve into the benefits and considerations of implementing a ranking system, along with some best practices to ensure it fosters a positive commenting environment.

Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments

Benefits of a User Ranking System

There are several advantages to incorporating a user ranking system into your WordPress comments:

  • Increased Engagement: By rewarding active participation, you motivate users to leave comments more frequently. This can lead to richer discussions and a more vibrant community.
  • Improved Quality: Knowing their comments contribute to their ranking might encourage users to leave more thoughtful and insightful contributions.
  • Gamification: Ranking systems tap into our natural desire for recognition and achievement. Users strive to climb the ranks, adding a fun element to commenting.
  • Community Building: By highlighting top commenters, you create a sense of authority and trust around their contributions. This can encourage others to learn from their insights.
  • Valuable User Feedback: Analyzing top-ranked comments can provide valuable insights into your audience’s preferences and areas of interest.

Considerations Before Implementing a Ranking System

While user ranking systems offer numerous benefits, there are also some factors to consider:

  • Complexity: Adding a ranking system can introduce complexity to your comment section. If not implemented carefully, it could discourage participation.
  • Gaming the System: Some users might prioritize ranking high over leaving valuable comments. Consider measures to prevent abuse.
  • Negativity: Focusing on competition can foster negativity in the comments. Ensure your system promotes healthy discussion.
  • Moderation: You might need to implement additional moderation measures to ensure fair ranking and prevent spam.

Method 1: Using a Plugin (The Easier Way)

The easiest way to add a user ranking system to your WordPress comments is by using a plugin. Several plugins offer this functionality, with varying features and customization options. Here’s a general walkthrough:

  1. Choose a Plugin: Popular options include Thrive Comments, MyCred, and WP User Ranking. Research available features and choose one that aligns with your needs.
  2. Install and Activate: Navigate to the WordPress admin panel, go to “Plugins” > “Add New,” search for your chosen plugin, and activate it.
  3. Configure Settings: Each plugin has its own settings page. Configure options like ranking criteria (number of comments, likes received, etc.), display styles (badges, leaderboards), and user roles eligible for ranking.
  4. Monitor and Refine: Once implemented, keep an eye on how the ranking system affects user behavior and adjust settings as needed.


  • Easy to implement, no coding required.
  • Wide range of features and customization options available.
  • Often integrates with other comment management functionalities.


  • May require a paid license for some plugins.
  • Limited customization compared to a custom-built solution.

Method 2: Creating a Custom System (For Developers)

For advanced users and developers, creating a custom user ranking system offers greater control and flexibility. Here’s a basic outline of the steps involved:

  1. Define Ranking Criteria: Determine how users will accumulate points to climb the ranks (number of comments, likes received, helpful ratings, etc.).
  2. Database Integration: Create custom fields in the WordPress database to store user ranking data.
  3. Comment Form Integration: Modify the comment form template to capture information relevant to ranking (e.g., upvote/downvote buttons).
  4. Comment Processing: Develop code to process comments, update user ranking points, and store the data in the custom fields.
  5. Displaying Rankings: Create a template to display the user rankings (leaderboard, badges next to comments, etc.).


  • Complete control over ranking criteria and display.
  • Deep integration with other comment functionalities.
  • Tailored to your specific needs and website design.


  • Requires coding knowledge and development expertise.
  • Can be time-consuming to implement and maintain.
  • Potential for performance issues on high-traffic websites.

I appreciate you reading my full article, Adding User Rankings to WordPress Comments


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