Comment spam is brutal these days, isn’t it?
Deleting spam comments manually, page by page, takes hours if you don’t know how to bulk delete the comments, so this will be a super quick tutorial on how to do that.
After I show you how to bulk delete spam comments in WordPress, I’ll show you my favorite anti-spam WordPress plugin so that you don’t end up with a ton of spam comments in the future.
Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve onboarded a couple of website care plan clients who’ve had thousands of spam comments waiting to be moderated on their sites. One woman had 12,000 spam comments and another had 30,000 spam comments. I also logged into one of my older blogs to find close to 30,000 spam comments in the queue.
It happens to everyone, though, so if this is you right now then no worries! We can fix it in a couple of minutes.
How to bulk delete spam comments in WordPress in 3 steps
1.) Create a backup of your website before deleting comments
Getting rid of all your comments isn’t something you can press the “undo” button, so if there’s any comments you think you might want to keep, make sure to take a backup of your site first. This way, if you accidentally delete some legitimate comments, you can restore the site and start again.
I use UpDraft Plus (Free backup plugin) to automate my website backups. It’s pretty iconic and I never have to worry about not having a backup available.
2.) Download and install the Delete all Comments of WordPress plugin – it’s free
Here’s a link to download the plugin I use to delete spam comments. It’s called “Delete all Comments of WordPress” and it’s free. It’s maintained pretty well and it was recently updated, so I do trust this plugin.
Download the file, then install and activate the plugin on your site.
3.) Go to Tools -> Delete Comments in your WordPress dashboard to choose which comments to bulk delete
You can choose to delete comments in moderation, comments in your spam folder, or all of the comments on your site. Select the comments you want to delete and then click “Delete Now.” Bam! Your comments are gone.
If you head back over to your comments page, you should see that the ones you selected are gone. Phew.
How to avoid spam comments in the future
Comment spam is the literal worst. Having an anti-spam plugin will help you avoid dealing with an overload of them. The plugin I use and recommend for this is called Anti-Spam Bee. I’ve used a few anti-spam plugins and this is the one that I’ve had the best luck with, so I use it on my own site and most of my client’s site.
It catches most spam comments and you can set it up to automatically put spammy-sounding comments in your spam or trash bin so that you don’t have to manually move them. It actually saves me a ton of time in the long run. And it’s also free. (Woohoo.)
And this isn’t legal advice, but another perk is that it doesn’t save any user data, so it’s GDPR-compliant. Yesssss.
Note that if you use a third-party tool for your comments like Jetpack or Disqus, Anti-Spam Bee won’t work with that. It works best with default WordPress comments, which is what I recommend using on most websites anyway.
That’s all! Hope you found this guide on how to bulk delete spam comments in WordPress helpful. This is a much less techy version of going into PHPmyadmin and doing it from the backend of your website, so I hope that this tutorial was accessible and easy to understand.
If you have any questions about how to bulk delete spam comments in WordPress, feel free to comment on this post and ask it. I do check in every couple of days for new comments and will respond to you.
More WordPress tutorials that might be helpful:
- 7 Ways to Make Your Website Look More Professional
- How to Design and Install Custom “Pin It” Buttons for Your Blog Posts
- How to DIY Your WordPress Website Maintenance
Want to save this tutorial for later? Pin it! 🙂