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How to Remove Website URL Field from WordPress Comment Form

Spam comments are a huge problem for many blogs. The biggest reason for spam comments is the desire to get backlinks by using the website url field in the WordPress comment form.

Since majority of the spam is generated by automated bots, you can easily combat comment spam by using free tools and plugins.

The trickier part is to discourage spam comments submitted manually by humans. These unwanted comments are submitted by actual users and are often off-topic, irrelevant, and add no value to the discussion.

In this article, we’ll show you how to remove the website URL field from the WordPress comment form. We’ll also explain why removing the URL field from the comment form will help you discourage spam.

Removing website URL field from WordPress comment form

Why Do People Submit SPAM Comments?

The short answer to that question is SEO or Search Engine Optimization. Let’s take a look at that in details.

Have you ever received comments from users like “Best WordPress Themes”, “Make Money Online”, or “MyBlogName” on your website? Why do they use such keywords instead of their real name?

By default, the WordPress comment form has four fields: name, email, website URL, and the comment box.

When displaying the comments, WordPress automatically hyperlinks the name of the commenter with the website URL they provided.

This backlink provides an incentive for blackhat SEO marketers and newbie bloggers.

They believe this tactic can help them get better rankings for specific keywords in search engines.

This technique does not work for SEO in most cases, but that hasn’t stopped spam comments.

This is why we have removed the URL field altogether from our WordPress comment form. By doing this, we have greatly reduced the number of spam comments on our site.

Real users will leave a comment on your articles whether they get a backlink or not. If someone doesn’t want to comment on your website because they are not getting a backlink, then you really have to question their intention in the first place.

That being said, let’s take a look at how to easily remove the website field from WordPress comment form. We will cover two different methods, and you can choose the one that works best for you.

Remove Website Field from WordPress Comment Form (Plugin)

This method is easier and recommended for all users.

First, you need to install and activate the Comment Link Remove and Comment Tools plugin. For detailed instructions, please follow our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you will see a new menu item called “QC CLR Settings” in the left sidebar of your WordPress admin panel. Clicking on it will take you to plugin’s settings page.

Comment Link Remove and Comment Tools plugin

From here, you need to check the box next to “Remove WEBSITE Field from Comment Form” option.

Once done, you need to scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the Save Changes button to store your settings.

Since you are already logged in, you will not see the full comment form when visiting an article on your website.

You need to either log out from the WordPress admin area or open a new incognito browser window. After that, you can visit any post on your WordPress site to see the comment form without the website URL field.

Comment form without website URL field

Removing the website field will discourage users who only want to comment on your website to get a backlink.

However, the comments that are already approved will still have their author names linked to their website URL.

To remove them, you need to go back to the settings page of this plugin and check the box next to the “Remove hyperlink from comment AUTHOR Bio” option.

Once you save the changes, the links from the existing comments will be removed as well.

Manually Removing the Website URL Field From WordPress Comment Form

Some users always want to learn how to do things manually instead of using a plugin. The good news is that you can certainly remove the website field from the comment form with the help of a code snippet.

To get started, you need to take a full backup of your WordPress site. This will help you to restore your website files in case you break anything while editing the theme files.

Next, you need to copy and paste the following code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin:

add_filter('comment_form_default_fields', 'unset_url_field');
function unset_url_field($fields){
    if(isset($fields['url']))
       unset($fields['url']);
       return $fields;
}

This code simply removes the website field from your WordPress comment form. You can visit a blog post on your website in a new incognito tab to see it in action.

We hope this article helped you to learn how to remove the website URL field from the WordPress comment form.

You may also want to check out our guide on how to add reCAPTCHA to WordPress comments to prevent spam comments. For more tips, also see our 12 vital tips to combat comment spam in WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

92 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Thank you for this tutorial. I have been looking for a way to remove that field for a while. It makes the comment section look more crowde, and it is just an extra step for a legitimate commenter. However, is it possible that my site will become slower if I install these kinds of plugins to solve each problem?

    So far, I have not noticed the difference, but I have installed only maybe 5 besides the ones that come by default with the theme.

  2. What I do is manually approve comments. Might be exhaustive for a large website, but it’s useful for beginners.

  3. The plugins have not been updated in 5 years so I’ll just use the code to remove the URL field. I am using Generate Press (child) theme and not sure if I place it before or after the ?>

  4. Excellent! I updated the functions file and that now hopefully gets rid of all the spammy comments on my site.

  5. This still works in 2021.

    Thanks for the code. That was easy! Glad to be rid of the website URL field for the comments.

  6. Is there any way to block specific URLs from the actual comment content? When I removed the website field and hyperlink ability, it didn’t stop the spammers from just typing their website at the bottom of their comment. The default “disallowed comment keys” feature matches inside words and not just the entire URL, so I can’t block them that way either (they aren’t using distinct keywords). And of course they use a different email address every time, even though I can tell it’s the same person/group. Right now I’m deleting their comments manually, but it’s very annoying because there are so many. Any advice?

  7. First of all, thanks for always sharing useful tutorials like this.❤️

    Secondly, I think I probably never had spend my more time on comment section instead of the article itself…

    Quite a conversation going on between Syed and “commenters”

    • Glad you like our tutorials and there likely is some spam that got by in the comment section if that is what you are talking about. Not everyone is perfect in terms of moderating comments. :)

      Admin

  8. Thank you for this post among your other informative posts. This was very helpful. I have been receiving spam comments with website links to other websites. It didn’t help that WordPress has default “website” field for those leaving a comment. This helps. Thanks again for writing this article.

  9. hello sir,
    i use your tutorial to remove website option from comment.

    i copy and paste the code in my functions.php but it only website field location change.

    • You may want to check with your specific theme’s support to see if they could be overriding something on their end.

      Admin

  10. Thanks for this article, it was helpful… too much spams while comment section of our site was with link. we actually switched to disqus, but disqus java was too much and had some impart on site speed. with your gauide, we are again back to normal.

  11. Yes but is there any way to automatically erase comments that have links ? ( either bots or human typed )

  12. Is it okay to delete the plugin afterward, or will the website option pop up again in the comment form?

  13. Your articles always helpful for me,
    All content on the website really very helpful

    Thanks a lot for sharing such a helpful information

  14. Hey big fan for wpbeginner website and your code works perfectly for my disktop& mobile website can plz tell my how to remove Website URL Field from Amp pages and post please

      • i used code from wpbeginner website which works perfectly for the normal site but Amp pages showing Website URL field i am using newspaper theme

        • You may want to reach out to your theme’s support to see if they have styling set up that could be overriding the code here

  15. I came to your website on purpose looking for a way to remove the Website/URL field on comments forms when I cannot use the functions.php method, so obviously I was looking for a plugin to do that. There doesn’t seem to be an up-to-date and reliable plugin that does this unless its baked into the functionality of another plugin. It might be a great idea to update this post just for that purpose – a working plugin :)

  16. How to edit “Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *” in wordpress comment form?

  17. Hey i downloaded and activated both and neither did anything to the comments box. I am just trying to get ride of the option for the comment author to put their website in.

  18. Hey there everyone, my theme is Twenty-Seventeen and I was able to remove the “Website URL” field from the Comment Section by just adding this single line code to “Additional CSS” section while customizing it through Appearance>Customize. The code is:

    .comment-form-url {display:none;}

    This might help or give you some idea I hope :-)

  19. uncheck the ‘required email and website’ options in settings -> discussion on the dashboard
    add the following code to your custom css

    #respond .comment-form-email, #respond .comment-form-url {
    display: none;
    }

  20. Dear is there any other way to disable website field from my ComputerPakistan Website. Actually I do not want to add any more plugin in my site.

  21. Great article and good information. However, both the plugins mentioned have not been updated for many years and could have compatibility issues with latest versions of WordPress.

    Is there an alternative plugin to disable these URLs? If yes, could you kindly update the article as it would be really useful

      • I have added this code in my themes functions.php and it worked but please can you tell me how to rearrange comments section options.My website shows comments option before name and email but i want to show name and email first and then comment option.

  22. Hi guys
    I like the article but i have concern here that plugins that you have recommended are two years old and unmaintained. Should i install it or not?

    Currently i am using No Captcha service from Google via a plugin.

  23. hello guys
    very interesting topic helped me a lot. here is my issue I deactivacted name, email and url, from my comments. now my comment section is just that comments, nothing else shows.
    however the comment for still shows a space for name email and url, the url box I canceled and is not displaying anymore thanks to a plugin,
    my question, which plugin (not really a fan of css) can I use to rid of name and mail on the comment entry form thank you and regards :)
    website theme twenty thriteen

  24. I had used a plugin “stop spam comments” for stopping spam comments. but after few week felt that I have reduced website hit on my website. my question is that comments has been stopped but why reduced website hits?
    Please tell me should I remove this “Stop Spam Comments” plugin and install this plugin “Disable / Hide Comment URL”?

    regards

  25. Why not just CSS?

    p.comment-form-url {height: 0 !important;overflow: hidden !important;}

    not the best solution but it works for me.

      • I can corroborate that CSS changes will not suffice.
        I was hoping that a simple display:none trick might work. But the messages keep coming.

        I’m going to install the plugin you mentioned now.
        Thanks to the author for the good suggestion & helpful article.

  26. Perhaps the major search engines should look into this as well. These backlinks are getting out of hand, just like when we added keywords to the meta keywords tag. That was abused and now these backlinks are getting abused.

    I use a plugin called Disable Comments throughout some of my websites so no one can leave any. So far it has worked but the other websites receive on a daily basis quite a number. Reading through them, there is many adverts with lots of links, people saying how insightful your website is. For one I do not or have ever heard anyone say insightful so straight into the Spam bin.

    I don’t think the amount of backlinks should influence your rankings as they can be too easy to get. I went after a web design job and the owner wanted to do some Off page SEO and wanted the successful applicant to be able to get at least 2000 backlinks for that website. Well I didn’t get the job and glad, probably spend the day leaving insightful comments on other peoples websites.

    • Hey Colin,

      Comments definitely encourage conversations like this one here. But yes, spammers are ruining it for the webmasters. Getting rid of the link feature has definitely helped reduce spam comments on the site.

      Admin

  27. Wondering if you could address a couple of concerns? For the plug-in “Disable / Hide Comment URL”
    1. is only compatible to 3.2.1.
    2. the last update was 2011-9-2 (really old)

    • If you look at the code of this plugin, it is very simple, and it works. You can take the code and dump it in your functions.php file…

      function disable_comment_url($fields) { 
          unset($fields['url']);
          return $fields;
      }
      add_filter('comment_form_default_fields','disable_comment_url');
      

      So in short, no this plugin is compatible with recent versions. The author just didn’t update the plugin because it simply works. Why update when it is not broken?

      Admin

      • Awesome!

        How do I also…

        1. Change the default “Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *” into a custom text, like you have done.

        2. Remove the * from “Name” and “Email”, and change “Name” to “Your Real Name”

        Thanks.

  28. i guess we already had a long conversation about this a long time back…i think since you got rid of livefyre…yea i agree this helps get rid of spam users and keep legit comments comin’! real nice plugins…wil check ’em out! :)

    Cheers,
    Gautam

  29. Nice article and I can understand why people want to remove it but can’t you use the right plugins to moderate and control spam? Thanks for the tutorial, if I do decide to then I know where to look for it.

  30. Thanks for the article. Reducing or eliminating spam is a critical part of comment management. Akismet does a great job for my clients, but uses URL’s to determine if a comment is spam. This plugin would then render Akismet less effectual. Also, the user can simply insert a URL in the comment itself, can they not? Lastly, I thought that the bulk of spam comments were generated by bots, which would still populate the comment field, even in the absence of a URL field.

  31. What crosses my mind right now is this “being WPBeginner, o e of the solid sites out there providing quality WordPress tutorials and advice, you can afford to not show the author link on your comment form”. In fact this will dicourage many to comment unless they really have something to say.
    I only comment on articles that interest me and never said just “oh, great article, I’ll bookmark it, fantastic piece of writing”.

    • Agreed, if someone is making the effort to comment on an article the least you can do is credit them with a link! After all it’s about the community right? I noticed this on WPB a while ago and it put me right off commenting full stop! Not that I comment for the backlink because it’s a nofollow anyway but because if any other commenters what to check me out they can.

      • Yes, this is the idea of the author website field. But, as I said, I do mot comment here at wpbeginner for backlinks or for make myself known. I use WP Beginner website to get answers and to implement new te tehniques on sites I develop.
        I only comment to topics I can “technically” comment, that’s it.

      • Elliot, first of all I’m sorry to hear that you have stopped commenting on WPBeginner just because we decided to get rid of the URL field. While your initial intentions weren’t to get backlinks, but your decision to stop commenting after we get rid of the field only emphasize the point.

        If you do not think that a community is worth contributing to just because you are not getting a backlink/promotional value, then I don’t think that you value the community enough.

        We have had internal communications about establishing a proper registration system for regular users on WPBeginner. This would allow us to unlock certain perks (i.e backlinks to all of your new and previous comments after you hit comment count marker X). But again, I feel odd because I’m offering incentives for users to comment which is favoring quantity over quality.

        I will probably have this added as one of the questions in our annual survey for the WPBeginner audience.

        Admin

        • Not “stop commenting” or “stopped commenting” just “put off” ^_^
          On the contrary I do value the community and I hope that I do offer value back to the community (albiet in a very small way compared to others) and I find your tone a little insulting to be honest!
          I believe that there are other contributors who I would certainly like to find out more about but seeing as you have denied a link back to their site where I can find out about “the community” it kind of defeats the object wouldn’t you agree? Fortunately I do recognised some of the contributors who I do value, Pippin being one of them but, if I’d like to find out about others then I have no chance right?

        • I won’t argue semantics of stop commenting or “commenting full stop”. Nonetheless, I see your point of finding user’s information and following up with them elsewhere. One thing that can be done perhaps is hyperlink all gravatar images with the user’s gravatar profile? Would you say that is a good solution?

          Always love hearing user feedback. This is why I will be adding this in the user survey that we are planning on sending out.

          -Syed

    • Zimbrul, first of all, I really appreciate you as a user. I have your gravatar memorized because I know you are one of our regular users. This technique is not to discourage users like yourself because you add relevant and useful conversation to the articles like this comment of yours.

      It is also one of the reasons why our site automatically approves your comment :) But you are among the exception. I can personally tell you that this is a big issue specially if you are running a tech related tutorial blog.

      SmashingMagazine has the same thing. They did this long time ago, way before WPBeginner. Reason was the same. I as a user appreciated their decision of getting rid of URLs because then I could engage in meaningful conversations with real people (not those drop by’s who might add controversial comment just to get a backlink and never check back).

      -Syed

      Admin

      • Syed, your kind words means more than a backlink for me, don’t you guys agree? For me the words of appreciation from one of the most respected figures in WordPress community means a lot and as I said I come here not for the backlink but for problem solving most of the time. Sometimes I need advice sometimes I can contribute.

  32. Really nice plugin, but can we do this without plugin? Please make a tutorial how we can use plugins without installing or activating, because lots of css & scripts files decrease blog seo. :-(

    • There is literally zero difference in terms of the site performance or maintenance with this being a plugin or coded into your theme. It’s actually much better to be done as a plugin for a variety of reasons.

  33. Tried the plugin you mentioned but it didn’t work because it relies on the function get_comment_author_link which is no longer used in modern theme’s comment forms. This works though: disable-hide-comment-url.

  34. A very good and useful article, I am also facing this situation on my blog i.e. lot of spam comments. Thanks for writing this article

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