There have been a lot of questions regarding RSS feed SEO benefits. People want to know if using RSS will improve their website's ranking on search engine result pages. In order to give you a complete answer to this questions, we have to explain how RSS feed works and how is it connected to your SEO rankings.
What is RSS?
If you want to stay up to date with everything that interests you on the Internet, it will take some effort. You can accomplish this buy manually visiting many different websites every day and checking for any new articles. This can be a really long and tiresome process.
But, there is a simpler way to do this. This is where RSS feeds (stands for Really Simple Syndication) become your most powerful tool. The definition of RSS states that it's a standardized system that is made with the purpose of distributing a particular content to the user, from an online publisher.
To explain this definition using simple terms - you can use RSS feeds to set up your own news feed about the topics that you want to see on a daily basis. You will receive information about the new article titles that have been published, from the areas that you are interested about. If you want to find out more about them, you can simply click on the headline and go to the web page of a particular article that catches your eye.
Setting up your RSS reader
In order to properly set up your RSS reader, you will need to follow a few simple steps. Not all of the websites on the Internet have an RSS feed, but most of them do. To do this process correctly, follow these steps:
Download an RSS reader that you find most appealing. There is a variety of RSS readers that you can choose from, so make sure that you do your research. You can use these on your computer or on your mobile phone as well. The RSS readers that we had the best experience with and the ones that we highly recommend are: Feedly, NewsBlur, Inoreader and Feeder.
Visit your favorite websites and try to locate the RSS link. If you can't find it, try to do a search for your desired website and add the words "RSS" in your search engine
When you locate the RSS link of the website that you follow regularly, copy its URL
Paste that same URL into your RSS reader.
Repeat this process with all the websites that you want to receive new information from
That's it - you have successfully set up your RSS feed! Depending on what RSS reader you are using, you will usually get suggestions on similar websites that might interest you. To see all of the new articles on your chosen websites, you just need to start your RSS reader and browse through the news feed.
There are a lot of options that RSS readers are offering to their users, so you can explore all of those if you have some free time. You can set different kinds of alerts and sounds that will notify you when a specific website feed is updated, or you can arrange your RSS feed in any way you find fitting.
How to use your RSS reader
You can use your RSS reader in a variety of ways. Think about what topics interest you the most and simply add them to your RSS feed. Here is a list of benefits that you can enjoy when you subscribe to a specific RSS feed:
News. You can subscribe to get the latest news on any topic you can think of. News about your favorite celebrity, sports team or even just your local city news.
Hobbies. Choose your favorite hobbies and get all of the freshest news about skiing, tennis, dog training or any topic that you can think of.
Photos. Do you like changing your wallpaper on a daily basis? Then photos RSS feed is a perfect choice for you. You will get the latest photos from amazing photographers all around the globe.
Following friends. In case you have a friend or a loved one that is a blog enthusiast, you can follow all of their updates through your RSS feed.
Currency Exchange Rates. Planning a trip to a foreign country? Stay informed about the local currency exchange rate and choose the perfect time for your trip.
Politics. You can have all of the latest information about your favorite candidates or just keep informed about the political scene in your country.
Hurricane Watch. If you happen to live in the USA, you might be interested in using this feature. Following the news about "hurricane alley" you can stay informed about evacuation tips and hurricane warnings near you.
These are just some of the examples on how you can use your RSS feed, nothing is stopping you from further exploring and finding new ways to optimize it.
Are RSS feed SEO benefits real?
Now that it's clear what RSS is and how it works, it's time to ask the important question: Do RSS feed SEO benefits really exist? The simple answers to this questions is that there are no direct RSS feed SEO benefits. But, that's not the whole story.
Back in 2015, John Mueller, who works at Google as webmaster trends analyst, was asked this same question. He gives a lengthy explanation on how RSS feed SEO benefits don't exist, but the RSS feed rather helps Google crawlers index your web pages faster.
In general, there’s two aspects involved there. One, is if you are looking for a ranking boost by having an RSS feed, that’s not going to happen. The RSS feed is really something we see as more of a technical help to crawl and index the content a bit better. So if you have a website that is changing content fairly quickly, a news website, a blog with a lot of new content, maybe even a shop that has lots of new content, then the RSS feed really helps us stay on top of things so we can pick up on all of those new URLs and crawl them as soon as we can.
There is one particularly interesting thing that he said, confirming that direct RSS feed SEO benefits don't exist.
There’s no direct ranking boost for the website itself. If there’s something new on your site and the RSS helps us find it faster, then we can show it in search faster.
RSS feed SEO benefits that are usually overlooked
While it is true that there are no direct RSS feed SEO benefits, there are ways to use RSS in order to boost the performance of your business. The RSS feed might not boost your rankings directly, but it will do it in a different way, just like the readability of your articles.
People who have subscribed to your RSS feed are repeating visitors. This means that these visitors will be more engaged on any of your articles. Having more positive engagement will boost the stats on your Google Analytics page, which will make Google rank your page higher.
It's not really a direct boost to your SEO, but this improvement shouldn't be overlooked. The RSS feed is just a tool that you can use to further develop your website's audience reach. As it goes for any tool, it's as powerful as your skill to use it.
If you are considering to put RSS feeds on you website, you need to know all of the information before you make your decision. Let's make it clear what an RSS feed on your website can and can't do.
An RSS feed on your website has no direct impact on the search engine result page scores of your website.
The only way RSS feeds are being used by Google is to index all of the content on your website faster, with better efficiency.
If you are running a news business or a blog site, it's a good idea to start using RSS feeds. This will help update your content on a regular basis and Google's crawlers will spend less time locating your new articles. As soon as they find your new URLs they will be able to crawl them faster, which means the new information about your website will be updated sooner on Google's search pages.
Using RSS feeds may cause some other sites to be able to build free links to your content.
RSS feeds commonly result in repeating visitors to your site, which will indirectly boost your engagement metrics. These metrics have a high impact on how Google determines the value of your pages.
Final thoughts on using RSS feeds
We have explained how RSS feeds don't have any direct impact on your website's SEO rankings, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't use them. Not all of the improvements on your ranking scores need to be direct, after all, only the final results matter.
RSS feeds are a great way to give your business a small indirect boost. If you start using them, there is a high chance that you will notice a slow and steady increase in your website's rankings on search engine result pages.
All things taken into account, RSS feeds can't be bad for your business. You shouldn't expect amazing results from them, but the changes your website will experience won't be irrelevant either. If you are looking for tips on SEO that will totally change your website's ranking, make sure to check out this article.
There are different ways to boost your website's ranking
If you are not satisfied with the RSS feed SEO benefits, there are plenty of other ways to improve your business. Our team of professionals is constantly working on unique ways that will boost your rankings to amazing heights.
RSS feeds aren't the only way to improve your website, they are just the tip of the iceberg. In order to make your business the best it can be, you need to be seen by all of your potential customers. That is the goal that we would be happy to achieve with you.
When you decide that it's time for your business to show its full potential to every Internet user out there, don' hesitate to contact us - we will be patiently waiting for you.
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