RSS 101

When you subscribe to a blog or podcast or use portal like iGoogle the technology that brings the information to you is called RSS. It is a way of publishing information easily making it available to subscribers in a central on-line repository. Just like getting your newspaper delivered to your door, RSS delivers your online content to you.

Why take advantage of RSS? There are many reasons:

  1. Pull rather than push – articles come to users rather than them having to hunt them down;
  2. Subscribers get the latest and greatest information as its posted;
  3. An RSS link encourages traffic to your site;
  4. Users can have a bunch of sources of info in one place – much like a newspaper;
  5. RSS can be used internally to disseminate information too.

How to set up an RSS feed?

  • First get your site set up to support RSS by adding a few short lines of code.
  • Place code on your site that the RSS feed readers can find your info.
  • Publicise your feed by telling the world and everyone you know in it at every opportunity.
  • Add the RSS feed button to your site so visitors know you the can easily subscribe. Feedburner has widgets to support this on their site.
  • Submit your feed to syndicators and search engines to make it easier for your audience to find you.

Once that’s done, your good to start publishing your own data feed over the web.


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