Blogging A-Z: F - Feed

One of the most useful and user friendly options for a blog owner is providing your readers with the ability to subscribe to your blog. This means they’ll receive your most recent post(s) in their email inbox or on their reader of choice such as Google Reader.   This subscription function makes it easy for your fans to stay up to date on your blog posts without having to visit your blog to see if there’s anything new. It saves them time and energy. As a blogger, it’s beneficial for you to use a subscription option for your readers because it ensures that you stay in touch with them – they won’t forget about you because your posts are being delivered to them.

Feedburner, owned by Google, is a service that makes it easy for anyone to subscribe to your blog regardless of their preferences for email or the various readers.  It is the service I use here at Faithful Bloggers and it is easy to setup and best of all it's free.

The first step is to visit and enter your URL. Feedburner will then generate a feed URL for your blog. You’ll then have the option to determine what statistics and data you track. Finally, you’ll want to integrate your feed into your blog. Depending on the blogging platform you’re using the instructions will be different.

If, for example, you’re using a self hosted WordPress blog then you will need to download and activate a plug-in to use with Feedburner or some themes such as Genesis already have the support built in.  Depending on what theme you are using you may or may not already have an RSS feed icon displayed on your blog.  If not, simple search Google for "free rss icons" and find one you like.

Time management is an important aspect of building a successful blog as is offering your readers every opportunity to become active in your community and Feedburner is one tool that can help.

P.S. You can sign up for the Faithful Bloggers RSS feed by clicking on this link or clicking on the RSS icon under the newsletter sign up on the sidebar.