SweetCaptcha – The Best WordPress Captcha Solution?

UPDATE – I no longer recommend SweetCaptcah due to the fact that it's been revealed that the plugin is used to distribute adware. You can read this Sucuri blog post to learn more about it. I would uninstall SweetCaptcha if you have it running.

Do you hate getting comment spam on your WordPress blog?  I just found a solution that might help anyone running a WordPress website, SweetCaptcha.  Honestly I think this is the BEST WordPress Captcha solution I have come across so far.  Even better than the widely used Akismet developed by Automattic (the company behind WordPress.)

What is Sweet Captcha?  Basically it is an imaged based captcha (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) solution that asks users to solve a puzzle.  While a lot of similar image based puzzle captchas I've seen are kind of annoying difficult and require too much thinking, SweetCaptcha keeps it simple.

sweetcaptchaDealing with spam comments can take up a lot of my time.  On one news website I help run we can receive thousands of spam comments every day. The reason for this is we get quite a lot of traffic now, and spammers obviously like targeting high traffic sites.  I decided to try out SweetCaptcha.  The result?  It has stopped the vast majority of spam comments.  There are still a couple that get through but the good majority are caught by Akismet.

In addition setting up Sweet Captcha was hella easy.  I just installed the plugin from the WordPress.org plugin repository, provided my email, then a few clicks later it was up and running.  Once I realized how great it worked on the news website, I installed it on several other WordPress sites I help maintain or run.

I've seen plenty of similar types of captcha solutions out there but usually they are complex and a pain to solve.  Most of these captchas are great for keeping spam bots from commenting but… it also makes it so that humans won't either.   Anything that takes a long time and is more hassle than they a potential comment thinks is worth it… someone probably is not leaving a comment.

Another type of captcha I hate, math.  I HATE math so having to solve a math problem is a big no-no in my book if you want me to comment on your website.  This shouldn't come as a surprise as most people hate math.  Clients I work with that have math based captchas I recommend they remove them immediately.  They always experience an increase in blog comments.  Why do you want less people to leave comments?  Sorry math nazis but people just don't like having to do math problems when leaving comments.

Honestly just as bad as math problems would be reCaptcha.  This came from the useless minds at Google that only think of things how engineers would like them, not real people.  Can anyone seriously read a what those words say?  The problem is a lot of sites use reCaptcha, ugh.

Anyway, having to go in and delete WordPress spam comments in my websites is time consuming every day.  So I figure SweetCaptcha will save me at least 1 hour or more a month since I won't have to do this on all my WordPress blogs.

My concern with SweetCaptcha, like most, is this might be too complex for some people to solve.  There should be some complexity though to keep the spammers out.

Some of you might be checking the comments below and be wondering, “Hey, why isn't Adam using SweetCaptcha?”  This site is run on a WordPress Multisite installation and I could not get the plugin configured to work.  🙁  Still I'm going to use SweetCaptcha on all my standalone WordPress sites.  That is until I find a better WordPress spam fighting tool.

Like most WordPress plugins SweetCaptcha is completely free.  The developers take donations to help support development and have some premium options so you can your own puzzles or strip out “Powered by SweetCaptcha.”  You can add several sites to one account email address as well.

If you have a forum, e-commerce, or some other type of site you can still use SweetCaptcha. It can be installed custom PHP pages and Javascript applications.  They had a Joomla plugin but it looks like development was abandoned.  The main market they are going after does seem to be WordPress users.

Visit the website here –

If you've tried out SweetCaptcha I'd love to hear your thoughts about it.  Do you love it or hate it?  Do you think it is the best WordPress captcha solution?

Anything you wish would be improved?  If not do you think you will try it out?

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2 thoughts on “SweetCaptcha – The Best WordPress Captcha Solution?”

  1. Adam, I signed up for sweetcaptcha and set it up on my wordpress site and it has never worked. I was initially, so ecstatic about the different kinds they had available and even went as far as upgrading to a pid version. However, it still doesn’t work. I contacted them via email and never got a response. I found them on Facebook weeks later and commented. They responded to my comment immediately and told me they would email me. About a week later I received and email. I responded to that email and have yet to hear from them…. I posted again on their Facebook page and no response. I even had my web designer work on it and he said its their server failing to communicate with wordpress. Ive been trying to get in touch with Sweetcaptcha for either help or a refund of my upgrade, but NOTHING yet. Any advice? My website is *Link removed* you can see the error I get when I activate this Sweetcaptcha plugin, at the top on the contact us page.

    1. I haven’t bought the paid version of SweetCaptcha, so it’s hard to for me to comment on it and the support. Like I said above the only issue I’ve had is I couldn’t get it working on WP multisite but it is not supported anyway.

      How did your web designer see that your plugin wasn’t communicating with the SweetCaptcha servers? Did he check error log files?

      One of the issues I’ve found with freemium services is they get inundated with support requests. Even if you pay a nominal fee for the service, sometimes that won’t help speed up support. (Mailchimp anyone?) There are a lot of freemium open source projects that fail because the economics of it doesn’t work for the developers I guess.

      Not sure that excuses having a tardy response to support requests. Perhaps you should try searching the WordPress.org forums to see if anyone else has had a similar problem.

      This is honestly the only issue I’ve seen about SweetCaptcha since I started using it. Ever since I’ve written this post I’ve seen many other sites using SweetCaptcha, not just WordPress sites. From what I’ve read in webmaster forums reviews have been all positive. People love it’s simplicity and ease-of-use in terms of installation and that it is relatively easy for users to solve the captcha.

      My advice honestly is to just uninstall it and find another WordPress captcha plugin for your site. There are a bunch that work well for contact forms.

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