Bloggers – Make Sure You Are Using Full RSS Feeds

RSS readers, such as Google Reader have become a popular way to read blogs. Rather than guessing when a blogger has updated, you can just tune into your RSS reader and read whatever posts are available. Or you can opt to have the blog updates emailed to you.

Bloggers have the option of providing a full feed to RSS readers or a short feed. A full feed means the entire post will be available to the reader and the surfer doesn’t have to visit the actual blog site to read the post. A short feed means that you can only see an excerpt of the post on the RSS reader or email and have to click through to the blog site in order to read the entire article.

It is a royal pain-in-the-a$$ to click through to the site, which is why I don’t bother subscribing to any blogs that don’t provide full feeds.

Set your blog to provide full feeds!

There are two reasons why bloggers set their feeds to show short excerpts:

1) They want the visitor to come to their site.

This is not a valid reason. Yes, I understand we all want more visitors, but trust me – there are a lot of people just like me who won’t read anything you have to say, unless they can read it all in their RSS reader or email.

2) They aren’t aware that their blog is not set to long feeds.

This is very common. I have often emailed bloggers to ask them to set the full feed and they frequently aren’t aware that their blog is on short feed.

If you are a blogger and you aren’t sure about if your site is set to short or long feed, do the following:

  • Check the setting in WordPress or whatever system you are using. In WordPress go to (Settings/Reading/For each article in a feed, show [select Full text])
  • Subscribe to your feed and check it regularly. You should always subscribe to your RSS feed, email feed, newsletter (if you have one). That way you can make sure your content is being delivered without issues.

How do I get readers to visit the site?

One suggestion is to include links in each new post to related older posts on your site.  This will varying degrees of success, but it will get some RSS readers onto the blog.  This post on Canadian financial advisors is a good example of how I tried to include a lot of related links on the post.  At the end of the article I added several more links.

You can measure the success of these links by looking any increase of traffic on the linked posts in the day or two after you publish the post.

3 Responses to “Bloggers – Make Sure You Are Using Full RSS Feeds”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Money Matters and Blake Sparks, Boomer and Echo. Boomer and Echo said: RT @MoneySmartsBlog Bloggers – make sure you are using full RSS feeds […]

  2. Steve says:

    Amen. I’ve actually felt deep regret unsubscribing from blogs I like, simply because they don’t have a full feed. I understand why people might feel it was a good idea, but it NEVER is. I won’t read a partial feed even if it’s the best blog ever – which should be a strong enough statement to stop anyone from doing it. Even if it’s just me.

  3. Mike Holman says:

    @Steve – I hear you. It’s unfortunate, but I’m the same way.

    Oh well.