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RSS Feeds & PodCasting

Real Simple Syndication (RSS) is a relatively new and easy way to distribute content via the Internet. RSS feeds require a special "reader" like Bloglines or NewsGator to view messages. Once you have created a Feed you can insert headlines as often as you like while subscribers to your website feed can download and view the information without ever visiting your site. Podcasting is simply a feed that has a media file associated with it.

You may have seen RSS feeds on various pages of the internet. They are usually identified by an icon that resembles one of the following: or
When a RSS feed is created our application will provide you with an icon which can be copied and pasted onto any web page of your site. When visitors click this icon they will be given instructions on how to begin receiving RSS feeds from your site.

Typical uses of RSS Feeds include:

  • Alerting your visitors to "What's New" in your organization
  • Distributing media files to your audience for sermons, teaching or training
  • Distributing your newsletter, coupons or announcements
  • Promoting sponsors or advertising

To Get Started With A News Reader:
You need to install an RSS feed reader. (A reader is a software application similar in function to your email program) - you will see headlines and descriptions in the channels you have subscribed to in this application.
Once you have a reader installed, subscribe to any RSS feeds by copying the url to the feed into your reader.

The  icon helps you identify that an RSS feed is available. This icon will have the URL link to that channel. To subscribe to the channel, right-click on it and choose Copy Shortcut. Switch to your reader and select File, New menu option (this may vary based on your reader). Follow the menus to add the channel.

If you click on this icon, a new browser window will open that includes the XML code for the RSS Feed. All you need is the RSS URL that points your reader to that channel. See the instructions in your reader software on how to create a new channel.

Once you have added the RSS link address to your reader, it will automatically check the channel for updates. For example, if you post a new headline or Podcast, your RSS subscribers will see that new headline added to their reader. This is a great way for visitors to your site to keep up-to-date on the new or updated content posted on your site.

Benefits of RSS Feeds:

  • The subscriber has control over the information they would like to view.
  • The subscriber will view headlines and descriptions, making it easy for them to scan topics.
  • RSS Feeds link directly to the associated article or broadcast on your website.
  • Subscribers are alerted when your site is updated.
  • Other webmasters can include your RSS Feed within their website
  • Increase traffic back to your site