User comments are generally considered a good thing for website owners. But what if those comments are leading to a poor online reputation due to spammers or a small number of troublemakers? Any troublesome comments can be easily deleted from WordPress simply by going into the Dashboard, opening the ‘Comments’ section, and deleting the ones you don’t want. If you want to bulk-delete all of the comments on your WordPress site, this method could be excruciatingly time-consuming. Thankfully, there are two different ways to bulk-delete comments in WordPress with very little hassle.
Bulk Delete with a Plugin
There are a small number of plugins that make it possible to get rid of all your comments in one fell swoop. One of the most popular is the Delete All Comments Easily plugin from developer Janmejai Pratap Singh. You can either install it through the Plugins section of the Dashboard or download it directly from the WordPress plugins page. If you choose the latter method, simply unzip the downloaded file into the ‘/wp-content/plugins/’ directory of your WordPress installation.
Once installed and activated, you can access the plugin by going to the ‘Tools’ section of the Dashboard. Just navigate to Tools> Delete All Comments Easily. You will be shown a list of all your comments as well as a check box to confirm your decision and a delete button.
Bulk-Delete with phpMyAdmin
The second way to bulk-delete user comments is to go directly to your WordPress database through the phpMyAdmin tool found in your web hosting administration panel. For most users, the administration panel will be cPanel. If you’re not sure how to access phpMyAdmin, a quick note to your host’s help desk should solve the problem.
Within phpMyAdmin, you will see a list of your WordPress databases on the left side. If you have only one, it’s as easy as can be. Having more than one requires that you know which one applies to the particular WordPress installation you are interested in. When you click on the chosen database, the panel on the right side should display its structure, including all of its components. Near the top of the list, you should see two entries for comments.
Check the boxes next to ‘wp_commentmeta’ and ‘wp_comments’. Then, look down toward the bottom of the panel to find the ‘With selected’ button. Clicking on this button will engage a drop-down menu from which you will choose ‘Empty’; you will have to confirm your choice by clicking the ‘Yes’ button.
We opened this post by explaining that user comments are generally considered a good thing. User comments are good for SEO purposes because they demonstrate that people are actually visiting your site and reading your content. Therefore, don’t bulk-delete all your comments simply for the sake of doing so. This action should only be utilized when you absolutely have to get rid of all or most of your comments because they are negatively affecting your website. If you only need to delete a few troublesome comments, you are better off doing so from the ‘Comments’ section of the Dashboard.