What is Akismet and Why You Should Start Using it Right Away

The Akismet plugin is pre-installed on every WordPress installation, but it isn’t activated by default.

Users frequently ask us what Akismet is and whether or not it is necessary to install it on their WordPress site.

We’ll explain what Akismet is and why you should start using it right away in this article.

What is Akismet and why should you use it now?

What exactly is Akismet?

Akismet is a WordPress comment spam filtering service. The company behind Akismet is Automattic, which was founded by WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg.

Akismet uses algorithms to sift through blog comments and filter out spam. The algorithm learns from its own errors as well as the actions of other websites.

When several websites report similar-looking content as spam, for example, Akismet will learn to recognize that content as spam in the future.

Akismet has caught over 523 billion spam comments as of today, and the number is still growing.

What Are the Benefits of Using Akismet?

Spam comments could account for up to 85% of all comments on popular WordPress websites. This means that only 15 out of every 100 comments are genuine.

Aside from that, comment moderation is a lengthy process. You’d have to spend countless hours manually filtering spam comments.

This is where Akismet can help you save a lot of time. The WordPress plugin will automatically detect spam comments before they are marked as pending in your moderation queue. This frees you up to concentrate your efforts on moderating real-time user comments.

When Akismet flags a comment as spam, it does not display the Awaiting Moderation notice that you see with other comments. Instead, it will send them to the spam folder on its own.

Let’s take a look at how to set up Akismet on your website.

How to Install and Configure Akismet in WordPress

Installing and activating the Akismet Spam Protection plugin for WordPress is the first step. Please see our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin for more information.

When Akismet Anti-Spam is activated, go to Settings » Akismet Anti-Spam in your WordPress dashboard. After that, select the ‘Set up your Akismet account’ option.

Create an Akismet account.

In your browser, a new tab or window will open, and you’ll see the Akismet pricing page. Akismet has two pricing options: free and premium.

If your site isn’t for profit, such as if it doesn’t display advertisements, you can go with the Personal plan. If not, you’ll have to go with one of the commercial plans.

We’ll use the Personal plan for the purposes of this tutorial.

Select a pricing strategy.

To create an account, you’ll need to enter your email address, name, and website URL on the next screen, as well as choose a price for your account.

The price will be set to $36 per year by default. You can, however, change the price slider under ‘What is Akismet worth to you?’ to any number between 0 and $120 per year.

Apart from that, if you’re not running ads, selling products and services, or promoting a business on your site, Akismet will ask you to check the boxes.

Simply click the ‘Continue with Personal Subscription’ button once that is completed.

Create an Akismet account.

After that, you’ll need to enter the confirmation code you received via email when you signed up. Click the ‘Continue’ button after entering the code.

Please enter the verification code.

Akismet will verify the code and then redirect you to a page with additional signup instructions.

Return to your site’s WordPress dashboard and go to the Settings » Akismet Anti-Spam page to finish the configuration.

Now, select ‘Manually enter an API key’ from the drop-down menu.

Enter an API key manually.

When you click the button, a new field appears in which you must enter your API key. The API Key can be found in your email inbox.

Simply click the ‘Connect with API key’ button after entering the key.

Your API key must be connected.

Akismet will begin protecting your website from spam comments once the API key is connected.

You can also change Akismet’s settings. For example, the plugin allows you to show the number of approved comments next to each comment author, review spam comments or have them automatically deleted, and display a privacy notice beneath comment forms.

After you’ve finished making your changes, click the ‘Save Changes’ button.

Change Akismet's settings

Then, from your WordPress dashboard, navigate to Comments and select the ‘Spam’ tab to review spam comments.

If you believe a valid comment has been marked as spam, simply click the ‘Not Spam’ button beneath the comment.

You can also delete comments permanently or empty the spam folder by clicking the ‘Empty Spam button.

WordPress spam comments

We trust that this article has explained what Akismet is and why you should use it right away.