Blog RSS Feeds for Dummies

With all the talk about RSS feeds and syndication, it might be helpful to break down the terms and explain what the process entails and what it can do for both your current and future readership.

  • “What IS an RSS feed for my website?” RSS stands either for “Rich Site Summary” or, more commonly, “Really Simple Syndication”. At their most basic level, RSS feeds for websites are simple bits of coding that make it possible for readers to get updates from your blog without having to check your site every day. Whenever you post new content, they are automatically notified and sent a link, simplifying both their browsing experience and your distribution.
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  • “Why should I bother with RSS for my website?” The Internet is awash with information. Readers are presented with a seemingly infinite buffet of material to choose from, and if one source does not deliver, the next one in line will be more than happy to step up. Having a great blog is obviously the first step, but once you actually have the readers on your page, you need to do everything in your power to keep them coming back. Readers subscribe to an RSS feed for websites they like. Make sure they can to the same for yours.
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  • “Do I need a programming degree to make RSS feeds for my website?” Thankfully, no. The programming has already been done for you. In fact, chances are good that whatever software you use for your blog already has syndication capabilities built in. Check your preferences, do a search, or contact customer support. The designers of your software have gone to great lengths to make it easy to add an RSS feed for websites exactly like yours. The “really simple” part is not just for the readers, you know.

Give your blog every chance to succeed in the crowded world of online information. Proper syndication can mean the difference between a great blog that gets read, and a great blog that falls through the cracks.