In this digital age, managing a website doesn’t just involve building content, and driving engagement and conversions; you need to safeguard your website against spam. Whether you already have a website or are planning to build one,  you’re likely no stranger to spam comments and other unwanted messages cluttering your sites. 

Enter Akismet, a robust anti-spam protection service that can help protect your website from unwanted spam comments, and keep it clean and safe. Even though Akismet is great when it comes to filtering out spam, it’s crucial to fine-tune its settings to avoid the headache of false positives – legitimate comments mistakenly flagged as spam.

In this article, we’ll explore what spam is, and why it’s essential to have protection before diving into how to use Akismet to prevent spam on your website. We’ll also cover solutions for Akismet’s false positives, and compare Akismet with other popular anti-spam plugins. 

By the end of this article, you’ll understand what Akismet can do for your website, and why you should start using it immediately.

What Is Spam?

Spam is defined as irrelevant or unsolicited messages sent over the internet to a massive number of users, for advertising, phishing, spreading malware, or simply as a nuisance. On websites, spam manifests through comments or trackbacks,  cluttering forums, blogs, and social media platforms with content that’s often irrelevant, misleading, or harmful, detracting from genuine user engagement, and the overall site experience.

Spammers often use bots to spread their content automatically, making it difficult for website owners to monitor and remove unwanted messages.

Why Do I Need Spam Protection On My Website?

Protecting your website from spam is essential for a variety of reasons. Let us look at some of the most crucial reasons in detail.

  • Firstly, it can positively impact your search engine rankings. Search engines like Google prioritize websites with high-quality content free of spammy links and comments. By implementing spam protection, you can prevent unwanted comments and links from cluttering your website, and potentially harming your SEO efforts.
  • The presence of spam in your website comments affects your site’s credibility. Visitors don’t like to interact with a WordPress website that appears poorly moderated or filled with irrelevant, malicious content. Effective spam protection helps maintain a professional, trustworthy environment conducive to positive user experiences.
  • Moderating spam manually will take a lot of your time, and can be a very daunting task, particularly for sites that are getting high traffic or active comment sections.
  • Spam can even deteriorate your website’s user experience. It inserts irrelevant content at various places, thus making it challenging for legitimate visitors to discover necessary information for doing meaningful conversations. By filtering out spam, you ensure your content remains the focal point, facilitating smoother user interactions and engagement.
  • Spam comments and posts can increase the data in your website’s database, resulting in slower loading times, and a decrease in overall site performance. By removing all the spam from your site, you can make it fast and responsive for your visitors.

In the end, dealing with spam comments and messages is necessary not only for keeping your site clean, but also for improving the site’s security, user experience, and overall reputation. By implementing a spam protection system like Akismet, you can automate the process of filtering out unwanted messages, and focus on more critical aspects of managing your website.

What Is Akismet?

Akismet is an anti-spam plugin developed by Automattic, the company behind It is designed to detect, and filter out website spam comments and messages. It uses advanced algorithms, and user-generated data to detect and block any type of spam in real-time, helping to keep your website free of unwanted and potentially harmful content.

Akismet has the following significant features:

  • Automatic comment checking on your blogs, comments, and contact forms to filter out spam.
  • Comment status history to track each comment’s status. So, you can check which comments were caught by the tool, and which got spammed or unspammed by the moderator.
  • URLs are displayed in comments to reveal hidden or misleading links.
  • Enabling the moderators to configure spam paraments, such as the keywords as well as the links.
  • Discard feature to block the worst spam, saving disk space, and speeding up the site.

How To Use Akismet To Prevent Spam?

Here is the step-by-step process to set up Akismet to protect your website from spam.

1. Sign Up for Akismet

First and foremost, you need to visit the Akismet website, and get an API key. For the same, you need to first click on “Get Started with Akismet.”

As soon as you click on the button, you will be able to view various subscription plans suitable for larger projects, and a free version mainly for personal usage.

If you don’t have any ads, sell products or services, or promote a business, you can go with the personal plan for free. 

If you are doing any of these things, you can choose any of the plans as per your need. After choosing a suitable subscription plan, and following the necessary steps, you will get the API Key.

2. Install and Activate the Akismet Plugin

Login to your WordPress dashboard, go to the plugins section, and search for the Akismet plugin. After this, install, and then activate the plugin.

3. Enter Your API Key

Upon activation, you’ll be prompted to enter your Akismet API key. This key links your website to Akismet’s servers, enabling the spam-fighting functionality. Enter your API key, and configure any initial settings as prompted.

4. Configure Your Settings

Akismet works well after entering the API key with the standard settings. However, you also get an option to customize its behavior as per your needs. You have a choice to discard the most blatant spam, saving you disk space, and speeding up your site, or you can also choose to keep all comments in the moderation queue for manual approval.

5. Monitor and Adjust

Every system has some fault. Regularly check your spam folder to ensure legitimate comments haven’t been incorrectly flagged (false positives). In the same way, review your approved comments to ensure spam isn’t slipping through. You can report any mistakes to Akismet, helping to improve its accuracy over time.

6. Understand the Stats Page

Akismt has a stats page where you can view all of your spam comments detected. Here, you can view missed or mistakenly caught spam. All of this data, enables you to understand the total amount of spam comments on your site, and effectiveness of the current settings.

If you don’t have any technical expertise with WordPress, you can contact a white-label WordPress development services provider. They will understand all the spam-related issues going on your site. Help you choose the right Akismet plan, and even integrate it into your website.

Akismet False Positive Solutions

While Akismet effectively prevents spam, it can sometimes mistakenly flag legitimate messages as malicious. To prevent this from happening, Akismet offers a few solutions that you can use to help reduce false positives. 

1. Check the Spam Folder

If you’re getting false positives on comments, the first thing to do is check the spam folder, and ensure the comment isn’t there. If it is, then mark it as “Not Spam” to move them back to the approved comments section.

2. Report the False Positive

If you come across a genuine comment in the spam folder, you can report it as a false positive to Akismet. This will help enhance Akismet’s filtering algorithms, and reduce the chances of similar comments being marked as spam.

3. Whitelist the Commenter

Another way to prevent false positives is by whitelisting certain users who have been known to post legitimate comments on your site, such as your own staff members. You can easily add these users to the whitelist by going to Akismet’s settings.

4. Contact Support

If you keep getting comments marked as spam even though they are not, or if you face any other issues with Akismet, you can contact their support team for help. They will assist you in identifying and fixing the issue, and ensuring your website is secure from spam.

Akismet Pricing And Plans

Akismet offers three different pricing plans to cater to the varying needs of website owners. 

1. Personal

This plan is ideal for those who run individual sites or blogs, and need essential spam protection. 

2. Pro

It is the most popular plan, providing advanced spam protection for professional or commercial sites and blogs. This plan offers additional features such as spam protection, 500 API calls/mo, and product support.

3. Business

This plan is designed for large networks or multisite installations, and offers the highest level of spam protection. The plan includes up to 5K API calls/mo, and can be used on unlimited sites. It also comes with priority support to ensure any issues are addressed quickly and efficiently.

4. Enterprise

This plan is especially designed for large businesses that want custom solutions. The plan offers a custom API limit, and dedicated support. And the best thing is, you can use it on unlimited sites.


Akismet is an excellent tool for keeping your website safe from spam. It’s easy to use, and can stop bad content from showing up on your site. The tool has essential features that catch and block spam, ensuring your website stays clean and safe for visitors. It’s suitable for all kinds of websites, because it’s not costly, and works well.

Choosing Akismet means your website will be a nicer place for everyone who visits, without spam.