What is Really Simple Syndication (RSS)? Definition, What It Is, and How to Use It

What Does Really Simple Syndication (RSS) Mean?

Really Simple Syndication (RSS) is an Internet coding language in the form of XML (eXtensible Markup Language) which allows users to keep up with news and information from various websites in an efficient manner. It works by providing an easy way for websites to syndicate their content, such as blog entries, news headlines, audio, and video, in a standardized format that can be easily accessed and viewed by different applications. RSS feeds are read by an RSS reader, which collects the URL’s of the feeds the user would like to follow and checks for updates on a regular basis. RSS not only provides convenience and up-to-date content, but also ensures the user’s privacy by not requiring them to submit contact information.

An Overview of RSS

RSS (Really Simple Syndication, or Rich Site Summary) is a format for delivering regularly updated web content, such as blog entries, news headlines, audio and video, to users in a standardized format. It continuously scans content from specified websites in search of new information, and feeds this information to subscribers. This technology allows readers to subscribe to content and have it delivered on a regular basis.

RSS is commonly used by many news-related sites, weblogs, and other online publishers to syndicate their content, and it is identified by an orange icon inviting users to subscribe. RSS uses the markup language XML, which provides the characteristics of the RSS feed, and divides the title, description, and main content of the website. Applications like Feedly allow users to customize channels based on their interests, and many applications use RSS to present content or send content to users. The main benefit of RSS is that it allows people to stay connected with websites without having to visit them.

How Does RSS Work?

RSS, or Really Simple Syndication, is an efficient way of staying up-to-date with your favorite newscasts, blogs, websites, and social media channels. To get started, you need an RSS reader (also known as an RSS aggregator) and an Internet connection.

Step 1: Choose an RSS Reader – There are many different types of RSS readers available, such as web-based, desktop-based, browser-based, email-based, and mobile-based. Choose the one that best suits your needs and preferences.

Step 2: Set Up Feed Sources – With your chosen RSS reader, set up valid feed sources which are the sites that you’d like to pull content from. This can be done by searching for the website in your RSS reader or clicking on the RSS or XML icon found on the website.

Step 3: Keep Checking for New Content – The RSS reader will keep checking your feed sources for new content and will update you when it finds something. The new posts are then imported from the feed source directly onto your RSS reader.

Step 4: Customize Your Feeds – Customize your feeds to ensure that you are collecting only the content you are interested in. This can be done within the RSS reader or from the website you’re following.

With RSS, you can stay up-to-date with all of your favorite websites and blogs easily and quickly.

RSS Is for More Than Blogs

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a technology used to allow readers to subscribe to content. This content can be automatically delivered as it’s published, allowing users to stay up to date with the latest happenings from multiple sources. RSS is commonly used for syndicating blog posts, but it can also be used for a variety of other purposes. For example, RSS is used to set up a community news site, create a job board, generate a newsletter, follow a YouTube channel, get the best deals on online shopping, and set up an RSS-powered aggregation site. RSS uses a markup language called XML to divide content into categories like title, description, and main content. RSS is also commonly used in applications, providing content to users without requiring them to visit each site individually. RSS provides a spam-free way to consume content, and offers a great platform for targeted advertising and marketing.

How Do I Use RSS Feeds?

Using RSS feeds is a great way to stay up to date on topics that are important to you. To get started, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  1. Get an RSS reader. Popular ones include Feedreader, Feedly, and The Old Reader. Create an account to subscribe to RSS feeds.
  2. Find the link to an RSS feed. Look for an RSS icon on the website you want to subscribe to. It will look like waves and can be found near the top or bottom of the page. Click it and copy the URL.
  3. Paste the URL into the “Add New Channel” section of the reader. This will start displaying headlines for you.
  4. Subscribe to more feeds. You can continue adding RSS feeds to your reader until you have all the websites you want to keep track of.
  5. Customize your RSS feeds. You can choose to be updated only on certain sections of a website, or set up search parameters on Craigslist to receive updates that match your search qualifications.

With RSS feeds, you can ensure you don’t miss or forget information that is important only to you. Additionally, RSS feeds can be consumed programmatically by other platforms.

What Are Some Examples of an RSS Feed Reader?

RSS feed readers provide an easy way for readers to access content from a variety of sources in one place. There are many different types of RSS readers available, including web-based, desktop-based, browser-based, email-based, and mobile-based readers.

Examples of some popular RSS feed readers include Feeder.co’s RSS Feed Reader Chrome Extension, Feedly, Feeder, NewsBlur, Inoreader, Feedreader Online, FeedDemon, Google Alerts, Blogtrottr, and Feedly.

Using an RSS reader is simple: once you pick out an RSS aggregator, you just need to set up valid feed sources which are the sites that you’d like to pull content from. The application will then keep checking your feed sources for new content and update you when it finds something. With a web-based RSS reader, like Feedly, all you have to do is copy and paste the URL of an RSS feed into the Feedly Search box, select the RSS feed from the list of sources, select follow, enter a descriptive name for the feed and select create. After that, you can easily view the content in the left pane and select the content that you want to read.

How to Use RSS feeds in Social Media Marketing and Email Marketing

RSS feeds are an efficient and effective way to stay up to date on the latest news, content, and updates from both industry and niche sources. By leveraging the power of RSS feeds, you can curate content quickly and easily, and use it to inspire your own social media and email marketing efforts.

Through social media scheduling tools like Hootsuite’s RSS Autopublisher, you can automatically share content from up to 25 feeds on Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin. Similarly, Mailchimp and similar email platforms allow you to connect RSS feeds to automatically send relevant content to your list.

In addition to using RSS feeds for content curation, you can use them to find opportunities for visibility on platforms such as Linkedin, Quora, and Reddit. By subscribing to the RSS feeds of industry or niche specific threads or forums, you can answer questions from the public about topics you are well-versed in, and potentially link back to relevant content on your website.

RSS feeds can also be utilized with feed readers and consumed programmatically by other platforms. Utilizing a platform like FeedPress also allows you to monitor your feed growth, as well as automatically post content to social media channels.

Overall, RSS feeds can help promote and distribute information and content originating from a company’s website, in a simple and concise manner. With their ability to curate content quickly and easily, they can be used to inspire your own social media and email marketing efforts.