What is RSS and How Do You Use it in WordPress
RSS is a web feed that allows applications and users to receive regular updates from a blog or website of their feed. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary. In the early days, to keep track of a website’s updates one had to bookmark the website and manually visit it. This is no longer the case thanks to the RSS feeds. Users can now keep track of a website’s updates without having to visit it manually. The feed is also great for publishers and bloggers since they can automatically syndicate their content so that readers can read in their feed reader, email and other devices.
How RSS Feed Works
The RSS feed will work by publishing your latest content in a structured XML document. The feed contain full articles or a summary. It also includes metadata for items like author, date and category. The RSS feed reader can then fetch and read the XML document.
All WordPress blogs come with a built-in support for the RSS feeds. By default every page on a WordPress website has meta tag that points the website’s RSS feed location. The RSS feeds can be disabled in WordPress.
Benefits of using RSS
RSS feeds make it seamless for visitors to subscribe to your content. Your visitors will receive updates of your website or blog directly to their preferred desktop applications, feed readers and any other device. What this means is that visitors don’t have to remember your URL. The content will be brought to them. This means your content will become portable and subscribers can take it to read offline. The use of RSS feeds will help nurture and build a loyal following on your blog. What is more is that RSS subscribers are more likely to share your content on social media.
Users can subscribe to favorite websites and read them all at one place. Most feed readers allow readers to sort their reading lists into categories and groups.
How to promote your WordPress RSS feed
A WordPress website will publish to RSS feed automatically. You will be able to find your RSS feed by adding /feed/ at the end of your website’s address. To encourage visitors to subscribe to your RSS feed, you need to add RSS icon to your sidebar or in another prominent location. It is also possible to connect RSS feed to an email marketing service and allow users to receive your latest updates directly to their inbox.