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How to Quickly Batch Delete Spam Comments in WordPress

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Let’s face it, spam comments can be annoying for any WordPress user.

They can clutter your website, harm your brand reputation, and discourage genuine user engagement, preventing any valuable discussion. The good news is you don’t need to waste time manually removing them one by one as you can easily delete them in batches or in bulk.

This guide will show you how to batch-delete spam comments in WordPress, so you can reclaim your comment section and focus on growing your online presence.

How to Quickly Batch Delete Spam Comments in WordPress

Why You Need to Deal With Comment Spam in WordPress

Dealing with comment spam is super important for your WordPress website. This annoying issue involves unwanted commenters who try to boost their websites’ search rankings and trick visitors by commenting on your content.

A bunch of these comments are generated by computer programs called spambots, while others come from real people. They are usually off-topic, badly written, and include links to other websites.

If you don’t moderate the comment section and let the spam comments go live, then they can harm your site’s reputation. People might think your site is low-quality and full of spam.

Plus, if any of the links in these comments lead to harmful stuff like viruses, search engines might label your site as unsafe. So, it’s crucial to actively handle and stop comment spam to keep your WordPress site trustworthy.

You can block a lot of spam by following our list of vital tips and tools to combat comment spam in WordPress.

However, even if you do everything right, it’s still difficult to stop all spam. This means you will still need to manually delete unwanted messages in the WordPress dashboard.

With that in mind, let’s look at how to batch-delete spam comments in WordPress. You can use these quick links to skip to a specific method:

Method 1: Batch-Delete Spam in the WordPress Comments Page (No Plugin)

The first method to batch-delete spam comments in WordPress is by going to the Comments page in the admin area.

The Comments section in the WordPress dashboard

Here, you can delete multiple comments at once using the bulk action feature.

Simply check the box next to each unwanted message, and then select ‘Move to Trash’ from the ‘Bulk Actions’ dropdown.

Bulk deleting comments in WordPress

Then, just click on ‘Apply’ to remove these comments.

This is a good option if you just need to remove a few spam comments at once and want to take a look at the comments further. However, if you get a lot of unwanted messages, then this method can be too time-consuming.

Method 2: Bulk-Delete Spam Comments in WordPress With a Plugin (Faster)

Another easy way to delete spam comments in WordPress is by using the WP Bulk Delete plugin.

The free version of this plugin lets you bulk delete all comments based on status, so you can easily remove all messages that are flagged as Pending, Spam, or Trash.

Just be aware that this plugin deletes comments permanently. If you check the wrong box and remove a comment by accident, then that content is lost forever. With that in mind, it’s smart to back up your WordPress website using a plugin such as Duplicator Pro before continuing.

The first thing you need to do is install and activate the WP Bulk Delete plugin. If you need help, then please see our step-by-step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

When you are ready, go to WP Bulk Delete » Delete Comments. You can now check the comment category that you want to delete.

For example, you will usually want to delete all comments that are marked as Spam.

Bulk deleting WordPress comments using the WP Bulk Delete plugin

If you have just reviewed your Pending queue and approved all genuine comments, then you might want to delete the rest of the Pending Comments.

After checking the box, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on ‘Delete Comments.’ WP Bulk Delete will now permanently delete all of these comments.

Clicking the Delete Comments button in WP Bulk Delete

Bonus Tip: Manage Your Comment Section With Akismet and Thrive Comments

If you want to keep your WordPress blog‘s comment section safe from spam, then we recommend installing Akismet. This anti-spam plugin can spot spam comments and immediately assign them Spam status.

If these Spam comments are not reviewed within 15 days, then Akismet will automatically delete them, so you won’t have to remove them manually again and again.

The Akismet dashboard in WordPress

Besides Akismet, we also recommend installing Thrive Comments. This comment plugin comes with moderation tools to make managing your comments much easier.

For example, you can assign certain user roles to moderate comments so that you can share the responsibility among your team members. Plus, you can delegate comments to certain users if you think they are more suited to respond to the messages.

Selecting user roles to moderate comments using the Thrive Comments Comment Moderation settings

Another thing Thrive Comments can do is remove the default website URL field from your comment form. This is a space often used for inserting malicious links, so deleting it can prevent that from happening.

We hope this tutorial helped you learn how to quickly batch-delete spam comments in WordPress. You may also want to check out our expert picks of the best WordPress comment plugins and our guide on how to get more comments on your WordPress site.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

11 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

    Hey WPBeginner readers,
    Did you know you can win exciting prizes by commenting on WPBeginner?
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  2. kzain says

    This post is a game-changer for managing comments on my WordPress site. I especially appreciate the comparison between the built-in method and the WP Bulk Delete plugin. For occasional spam comments, the admin panel works fine. But for those inevitable waves of spam, the plugin will be my new best friend. Thanks, WPBeginner for this time-saving tip!

  3. Dayo Olobayo says

    I’ve tried several methods to manage spam comments but this one is by far the most efficient. The WP Bulk Delete plugin is easy to use and has saved me a lot of time. Even more better is that it can be integrated with other plugins to enhance its functionality.

  4. Tim Pettiford says

    Good advice. My problem is slightly different. The comments I need to delete are located in the “feedback” area and are not marked as spam. There are over 13,000 that contain spam, I have manually deleted 2,000 but would like a way to bulk delete them. The majority are tied to two specific posts.
    My question is: Are they linked to the posts making it possible to delete the post, therefore, deleting the feedback/comments?

  5. Jennifer Lalo says

    This plug-in just saved me from manually deleting 2,000+ comments. Thank you very much — worked like a charm.

  6. Debbie Takara Shelor says

    Thank you SO much for this help. I’ve been using Akismet, but didn’t have captcha going. I suddenly realized that I had 65,000 spam comments and whenever I tried to empty spam, it crashed everything. I’m running your recommended plugin right now! I had already tried deleting 20 comments at a time. Wow that would have taken forever. Thanks again!

  7. Chris Hazel says

    I’ve been using WordPress for the last six months and had no problems running any feature or understanding it closely, but spam comments was really getting on my nerves. Initially I decided to ignore the piling comments, only to discover later that they amounted to a few thousands.
    That is when I searched the internet to find out how I could remove all
    the spam.

    What really scared me was the time it would take to delete so many comments – I then installed the CAPTCHA and was relieved to see the spam folder empty in just one click.

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