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What is RSS Feed? Definition, Benefits, and How to Create It

Last updated: Nov 28, 2023

What is RSS Feed? Definition, Benefits, and How to Create It
Cover image: Illustration of RSS that allows news sources to provide their latest information in the form of a feed.

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RSS is a term that is certainly familiar to you, especially if you are an active blogger and often use WordPress.

In general, it is a web feed that allows users to receive periodic updates from a selected website or blog.

Overall, it can be said that this technology has changed the way users access information digitally.

If you are still confused about what is RSS feed, its benefits, workflow, and how to use it, read the following information thoroughly!

What is RSS?

Illustration of RSS (Really Simple Syndication) on WordPress
Figure 1: Illustration of RSS (Really Simple Syndication) on WordPress

You must be familiar with the image above, aren’t you? RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication, also commonly referred to as Rich Site Summary.

In the world of digital content and online news, RSS is an XML file format that allows news sources, blogs, or websites to provide their latest information in the form of a feed.

Before the development of this technology, users had to visit each website they liked and click the bookmark button to check for updates periodically.

Therefore, one of the most significant advantages of having this Really Simple Syndication feed is increased efficiency. Now, users can obtain news or information from their favorite web pages without having to manually open each one.

Furthermore, you should also know that this technology can also simplify the activities of online news publishers or bloggers. 

Boggers can expand the reach of their content publication so that their target audience can access content through various platforms, such as email, some reader apps, or other types of devices.

This is why almost all blogs created using WordPress are usually supported by this technology. If you want to learn how to make an RSS feed in WordPress, you can find a more detailed guide in this article.

The Advantages of RSS Feeds

After understanding the basic concept of what is RSS, let's now explore the benefits offered by this technology, such as:

1. Automatic Access to the Latest Information

As mentioned earlier, it is a groundbreaking technology that greatly benefits users in automatically obtaining information in the digital realm without having to visit every web page. 

Users don't need to memorize URLs because, with this technology, they can collect various content in one location to be read immediately or saved for offline viewing. 

Furthermore, users can also customize the feeds based on their preferences to ensure the information they receive remains relevant and aligned with their desires or needs.

2. Helps Organize Followers or Subscribers

In addition to facilitating user access to information, this feature also provides significant benefits for bloggers or website managers. 

It can help website managers build and expand their follower base. With this feature, the content released can be reshared by the subscribers on social media or other platforms. 

Consequently, website managers can gather and organize readers while increasing the overall organic traffic to their web pages.

3. Facilitates Indexing by Search Engines

This feature can help the content you produce to be easily indexed by search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. 

When you publish new content with this technology, search engines detect these updates more quickly than they would with a website that is left unchanged. 

Thus, this feature can also enhance the visibility and ranking of content/websites on search engine results pages (SERP).

4. Enhances SEO Optimization

By connecting an RSS feed to your website, your content will automatically be published on various feed provider platforms. 

In other words, it can help your website gain more attention from search engines, making it easier for users looking for relevant topics to find your content. 

Additionally, this feature also allows you to categorize, tag, notify, and provide related headlines for each feed, making it easier to group content based on specific topics and attract users' attention.

How Does It Work?

Illustration of How RSS Works Using XML Documents.
Figure 2: Illustration of How RSS Works Using XML Documents.

In simple terms, this feature operates by publishing the latest content in an XML document structure. 

With this feature, you will find complete articles or content summaries along with metadata, including the date, category, tags, and other additional information.

To support content performance through this feature, you must be able to publish engaging notifications. 

You can start this strategy by creating an XML extension text file containing information related to the title, description, and links for each post. The XML file indicates content in a standard format for easy automatic reading.

Users can access and read them through an RSS Reader. In general, this application manages various types of XML file content, categorizes information, and displays it automatically for easy access by users.

How to Find The Feeds on a Website?

If you want to receive information on a specific topic from a website or blog automatically and periodically, it's quite easy to do so. 

You just need to visit a website and thoroughly explore its web pages. Some websites often display these Really Simple Syndication feeds with an orange button with an image of a network containing XML.

The next step is to subscribe by clicking on that icon. By doing this, you can subscribe to the website's feed in your reader app.

How to Make RSS Feed in WordPress

Overall, you can leverage this technology to enhance SEO on a website or blog. It's undeniable that search engines tend to favor websites that consistently update their information and content. 

Therefore, you should maximize the use of this feature to improve content visibility in search engine results.

Before delving into the core discussion, you need to ensure that the Content Management System (CMS) you're using supports this feature. Some examples of CMS platforms that support this feature are WordPress, Drupal, or Joomla.

  • Log in to your WordPress dashboard.
  • Click the "Settings" button and select "Reading."
  • In the "Site Feeds" section, click and enable the option "Show links to the RSS feed of your website."
  • Customize categories and settings according to your preferences and needs.
  • Save the changes.

To maintain it, always ensure that the content on your website is regularly updated and maintain the quality of writing and information presented.

Additionally, you can add it in the form of a widget by going to your website's page and editing the Widget menu under Appearance > Widget.

That concludes the comprehensive explanation of its definition, advantages, workflow, and how to make RSS feed in WordPress to support content distribution activities and enhance SEO optimization.

After going through the discussion above, you surely understand that this technology can benefit both readers and content creators or website managers.

If you're currently trying to empower article/blog content creation based on SEO strategies, you can also entrust it to experienced professionals.

The SEO Services by cmlabs can be your trusted partner to create websites that dominate the digital search space through SEO-friendly article empowerment. 

We also provide SEO Article Writing Services to assist in the regular, strategic, and SEO-optimized content production process. Let's collaborate by contacting the cmlabs Marketing Team now to schedule a meeting and request a quotation!

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