I have always resisted from putting up a sign our guestbook on the site. Seems to make the site too much like 'my first web page', 'I'm the most popular geek in the school' kind of thing.
But I'm getting lots of mail from well wishers and I'm thinking this could be a good marketing tool.
Rather than me update the testimonial pages every few months why not let the guest book do the talking? As long as its full of good words about the site and possibley just one or two criticisms then surely this is going to attract more punters?
Whats the concensus here? guestbooks - for cheesy homesites, or quick, cheap 'n easy, free advertising?
Every site that I build includes a guestbook. I find they are essential to give visitors a way to feel like they are communicating with me and others. This appears to make it more likely that people come back.
It's also a great promotional tool - my guestbook has over a thousand entries, all positive.
From my surfing experience, I tend to surf less to sites again if there is no guestbook. It's like the webmaster didn't care enough to add one and does not care about what I think - so I'll go to someone who does care.
One note: guestbooks need to be tightly moderated and any and all negative or advertising comments must be removed. This is not what they are for.