1script - 6:46 pm on Apr 10, 2013 (gmt 0)
Looking for input from other webmasters to verify if this is not me imagining things.
Every so often (once or twice a month, workload permitting) I would go on a blog strolling/comment posting binge in the part of the blogosphere around the particular industry in which I'm actively involved off-line, have 20+ years of experience, yada, yada. Saying all this to justify my using the words legitimate nofollow links in the title - my comments are usually very detailed (as you can see, I have trouble with brevity in my posts :), on-topic, usually 99% of them are approved and without false modesty I would say that these are the types of comments people normally have in mind when they start the blog in the first place.
I always sign my comments with one name and always use the homepage URL of a site that I own that describes the state of the industry, so it's extremely closely related. I guess I could skip the URL but I see no reason not to promote my site given the opportunity. All such links are no-follow of course and all have the same anchor - my (assumed) name. I do actually get a bit of referral traffic through these links.
So here is what happens: every time I see G traffic to my site drop anywhere from annoying 5% to sometimes pretty painful 30% in about 3 -5 days after I post 5-10 such comments. The traffic would normally return (though not always) but my next blog commenting binge would have it go down again. This has been going on for a couple of years now.
I've yet to devise a scientific method of verifying the correlation between the comments and the traffic drop but anecdotally they seem to be related and separated by only 3-5 days.
So the big question is: does anyone else see a similar outcome of posting multiple legitimate blog comments in a short period of time? And in a more general sense, I guess: do you still see some value in using a URL when posting a blog comment?