30 Days to a Better Blog: Add a Link To Your RSS Feed
Getting people to subscribe to your RSS feed is extremely important for encouraging return visitors and keeping your readers informed. It’s on par with getting people to subscribe to your newsletter! So why not make it easy for them to subscribe, and keep track of your subscriber statistics at the same time?
What is RSS?
RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a family of web feed formats used to publish frequently updated sites in a standardized format. It benefits subscribers by allowing them to syndicate their websites automatically. It benefits readers who want to subscribe to timely updates from their favorite websites or to aggregate feeds from many sites into one place by reading them on a RSS reader/aggregator.
How do I Find My RSS Feed?
Most blogging platforms automatically generate an RSS feed, but it may take some investigation techniques to determine the URL. In WordPress the link to your RSS feed could be http://www.website.com/feed or http://www.website.com/?feed=rss or even http://www.website.com/?feed=rss2! In Blogger the link is typically http://website.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default. For other platforms you’ll probably have to do a bit of digging.
Once you know your RSS Feed link, you can add it to your sidebar and be done OR you can run it through FeedBurner to start obtaining stats and watch your subscribers grow! It involves a few extra steps (including signing up for a FeedBurner account and installing some code) but it’s well worth the hassle. Here are some tips for setting up FeedBurner on a variety of platforms.
Once you’ve added in your blog feed URL and information, you can click on the “Publicize” tab to get a snippet of code (including the universal RSS icon) to add to your blog. You can also embed the link yourself and use a different icon (you can grab some free ones here).
Subscribe To Your Own Feed!
Be the first to subscribe to your feed – and then check it out in an RSS reader. You may be surprised at how your blog looks outside of your own template! I follow a blog that uses a white font on a dark background, but in the reader the text is rendered invisible, so I always have to click through to the blog. Perhaps a good idea … but to me it’s just annoying!
Let us know how your RSS Feed installation went.