Feb 19 2008
What is a Trackback (also called pingback)?
When you link to an individual post on a blog (yours or someone else’s) an option is to create a trackback. This means a small snippet of your post will be sent as a comment to the post being linked to. It looks something like this:
Why Create Trackbacks?
Trackbacks are useful for a couple of main reasons (and no doubt there are more) :-
- it lets the blogger in question know that you’ve linked to their post and
- it allows anybody interested in the original post know that you’ve had something to say about it, so it enables the conversation to be followed easily.
This can be a good way of getting traffic to your site, particularly if you are linking to a very popular blog. I also think it looks less “spammy” than a comment on the original post saying “I wrote about this today” with a link to your post.
How to Create a Trackback with WordPress Blogs
Firstly, you should go into “Options” and “Discussion” and ensure you have the following options checked.
When you write a post and create a link to a post on another blog (please see Lightening’s How to Link if you’re not sure how) sometimes trackbacks will automatically be issued if there is only one or two. I generally find that if you have more than that, trackbacks will not be issued.
In your write post screen, there is a section under the text screen that is titled Trackbacks (depending on the plugins you use there might be other ones as well).
Click on the “plus” symbol to open the field. I find it easiest to paste the URLs in this field as I link to each one in my post (or if there are many, paste them into a text editor and paste them in at the end). Just remember to separate each URL with a space.
After your post is published, if you go into “edit”, you will see the trackbacks that have been sent. My recent post about memes and awards for example shows this:
Some blogging platform have special URLs for trackbacks – like Typepad which powers Servant of Chaos. It’s most effective to look for the special trackback link (typically found at the bottom of the post).
Extension Reading 😉
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