RSS is a Win-win Technology

By: Cindy Dykstra

Really Simple Syndication (RSS) refers to a group of formats used for automatic content distribution via the Internet. An RSS web feed is a summary of web content from a source that is updated regularly. When you see news or sports tickers on a web site, most likely what you are seeing is some form of an RSS web feed.

Web site owners publish a feed, also known as syndicating content, to make content available from a updated source such as the articles, blog, audio or video on their website. Other web site owners who wish to display this content on their web site can simply perform a search for a targeted RSS feeds, get the web address of the feed and then format it for display on their site.

Normally, the web feed is condensed for display on another web site. At a minimum, each item in the feed displays as a headline, a description and a link to the web page where the entire article, blog post or other content resides. It can also be formatted to include the source, date and time the content was originally published. This way, a web site owner displaying RSS web feeds from external sources on their site can make several items from one source, or a collection from many different sources, available for their web site visitors.

Advantages of Publishing a Feed

Web site owners who publish a web feed of their articles, blog or other content can draw visitors to their web site through the link displayed in the feed. These links are helpful in search engine marketing due to the importance of incoming links. As their web feeds are picked up and used as content on other web sites they become a trusted source of information.

Advantages of Using an RSS Web Feed on Your Web Site

Web site owners are able to add valuable content to their site that their visitors find fast and easy to access while being fresh and relevant. They find your web page content new on every visit and will be likely to return more often. Once formatted for use, web feeds are automatically updated, requiring no further effort on behalf of the site owner.

RSS web feeds are often highly targeted to a particular niche or theme and allow you to optimize your own site for keyphrases you wish to rank highly for.

For search engine marketing efforts, web feeds show spiders continually updated content and links to trusted sources of information on your web site. This results in the search engine spidering your site more often looking for new content. Any new web pages you add to your site will be indexed more quickly by the search engines.

RSS is a win-win for both web sites and the people who visit them. Publishers gain incoming links and wide-reaching exposure for their web site. Web sites that use feeds enhance their web site's relevance and popularity with original content that keeps visitors returning, with no effort on their part. Web site visitors find information targeted to their interests more easily and quickly than searching through several web sites to find it themselves.

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