Make Your RSS Feed Stand Out

Even if you have never heard of RSS before, you probably recognize the icon for RSS feeds. That little orange button with a white dot, and white radar signals radiating out from the corner, is the signal to any internet user that a website or blog has RSS, which stands for Real Simple Syndication, or Rich Site Summary, depending on whom you ask. MarketingSherpa reports that about 75 million people and businesses use RSS feeds. So how do you make your website available to that population?

  1. Make sure your site can be subscribed to on an RSS feeds list.
  2. Some organizations, like schools, or clubs, use RSS to share things within their own group, such as events, and times for meetings. Then there are businesses that use RSS to share information with the outside world, such as coupons, product information, or new sales deals. Whatever it is that your website is sharing, your first step is to make sure that people have the opportunity to subscribe to that information if they are interested. Most website and blog development programs have an RSS feed option built in, and all you need to do is choose to display that RSS icon in order to give people the power to subscribe. If that does not exist on your development program, then you will need to purchase or download a program that can convert your website into XML.

  3. Let your RSS feed stand out with an RSS icon.
  4. Once you are sure that your website has an RSS feed for subscribing to, you will notice that you can display the little orange button on your website to signal to users where to get your feed. But did you know that there are many RSS feed icons from which you can choose an RSS feed icon for your website? If the orange clashes with your layout, or you want to draw more attention, then simply download a button of a different color, size, or design. Available icons might be animated, textured, shaped like guitar picks, as big as half of your screen or as small as your mouse cursor. Choose one that fits your website and stands out.

  5. Get more out of having an RSS feed.
  6. Once you have chosen an eye-catching icon for RSS, you can take it one step further. Consider adding a plug-in to your website so that you can track activity on your feed, such as how many people have subscribed, and how much traffic is actually getting back to your website due to those subscriptions. An RSS feed is a powerful communication tool, but it works more effectively if you can be sure that it is being used.

Once you enable an RSS feed subscription on your website, and find an icon for RSS that calls some attention to itself, you can start to be visible to those 75 million people who use feeds. If you really want to take advantage of your RSS feed, then it is important to track activity and use that information to inform how successful your updates are at capturing internet users. Remember to look for an eye-catching icon to signal to your readers that your website is RSS-ready.