Simple Syndication (RSS) belongs to the family of web feed formats that
use XML formats for Web syndication. RSS Feed is used by various news
broadcasting websites and weblogs and for podcasting. Web feed is an XML
based document that contains the content items consisting of synopsis
of stories and weblog posts with links provided for the detailed
description of the content. The Web Feed follows two types of formats -
Atom and RSS. When RSS delivers this information as an XML file, it is
called an RSS feed or RSS channel.
What is an RSS File?
RSS files consist of "items". It is essential to include at least
one item in your RSS file. In order to enter the items in your RSS file,
you will have to provide three pieces of information:
is not necessary for the title and the description to match the words
used in the HTML title tag of the webpage. As long as the title and
description defines the content of the link, you can use anything you
The XML tags are similar to HTML tags with the sole exception that the XML tags have no set definitions.
the title you want to use is "Little World" and the description is "this little world comprises of big men and structures", and the
link is "littleworld379.com".
For the title, you need to include the following inside title tags:
Similarly the description and links should be included inside their individual tags. The overall appearance should look like:
<description>this little world comprises of big men and structures</description>
that the whole list is complete, we need to define it as an item by
placing the whole thing inside item tags. In order to syndicate, we add
more and more items. The new items are inserted on top and the old ones
get removed from below. The RSS can contain a maximum of 15 such items.
Thus, your whole item list should look like this:
<description>this little world comprises of big men and structures</description>
order to complete the RSS file, you need to add a tag on top of the
file stating the XML and RSS versions. They are usually written as:
Four Sections of an RSS File
four main sections of the RSS file include the channel, image, item,
and text input sections. Amongst these four, it is the channel and item
elements that are essential. The other two are optional.
- Channel Section - The
channel section bears the metadata that describes what the channel is
about and who created it. It is a compulsory element of the RSS file
that contains the channel name, description, language and URL.
- Image Section - The
image section is an optional element of an RSS file that bears the logo
of the channel provider. The default image size is 88 pixels width and
31 pixels height. It can be increased to a maximum of 144 pixels and 400
pixels respectively. The tiles, URL, width, height, link tags of the
image help it to be transferred into HTML format.
- Items Section - The
items section is the most important and essential element in a channel.
These items are changed frequently and serve as news headlines. The
title of the items should be less than 100 characters while the
description should be below 500. The item title is linked to the full
description of the content and the small description provided below
helps to highlight the content of the news articles.
- Text Input Section - the
text input section is an optional area and only one text input is
allowed per channel. In an HTML format, the test inputs allow the users
to respond to the channel.
Creating RSS Feed with the help of Software
the RSS feeds are created in XML, it becomes difficult for the
non-technical people to create it using the right type of coding.
However, there are a number of RSS feed creation tools available that
help not only to create the feeds, but also to edit and publish them.
They help to create the professionally looking RSS feeds very quickly
and easily. Along with publishing, creating and editing RSS feeds, these
software helps in podcasting and iTunes. They are used to create
infinite number of RSS feeds that enables the users to maintain and
distribute various contents at the same time.
Where to Submit the RSS Feeds after Creation
you have created your RSS feed, you need a place to submit it. There
are a number of sites that allow you to submit your RSS feed. They are
very easy to use and require you to enter the domain of your website.
These sites often locate the location of your feed. Add the URL of your
RSS feed, validate it, format it, view the keyword analysis and submit.
It is will be quickly published to the RSS search engines.
Displaying Content in RSS Feeds:
are a number of tools and sites that help the webmasters to display the
content present inside RSS Feeds by be generating Java or HTML scripts.
They even allow the same feed visible on your site with a regular web
browser. They allow you to display the most recent information form your
RSS Feed. They are often effective in increasing the display time of
Validating your RSS Feed:
syndicated feed has to be validated to make sure that the format is
correct and it will work properly. The feed validators work with RSS
0.90, 0.91, 0.92, 0.93, 0.94, 1.0, and 2.0. When the validators find any
problems in your feed, they give you a message stating the nature of
problem and the location of the problem. You can even get additional
help in case you are unable to locate the problem. All you need to do is
enter the URL of your RSS Feed, and it checks all the XML and HTML
are various RSS feed directories from where you can easily search feed
items for specific keywords. You can find topic specific RSS feeds by
just navigating the RSS directory. Various feeds like art, article,
employment, forum, health, game, classified, business, news, personal,
real estate, reference, political, religion, shopping, sports, weather,
travel, and law enforcement feeds are present. You can even get the feed
depending on your preferred language.
Areas where RSS feed is used
was first started with the intention of distributing headlines for news
items. Slowly, RSS feed started to be used in various other areas. Some
of those areas include:
- Job Openings - Classified feed for job related vacancies are provided by placement firms and other newspapers.
- New Homes - All the up to date feeds on new home are provided by retailers. This helps in easy search of houses.
List - Various auction sites provide feeds on various items that will
be auctioned. They are displayed by the auction vendors.
- Forum Headlines - They give various topics their specific headlines proving new forum threads listing.
Sales - various sites use RSS to make it easier for the viewers to see
the various updated products. Even search result format helps to make
the viewers aware of the various specialties of any particular product.
- Airlines - RSS is used to report flight delays.
- Entertainment - RSS feed helps to list the latest movies and television programs that are to be showed.
- Schools - RSS is used to pass on the homework assignments and also to inform about sudden holidays.
- Press Distribution - RSS helps to update the new releases.
Listing - They help to save time by listing all the newly added and
changed pages. Thus, people no longer have to check for updated
- Announcements & News - They provide headlines, list of announcements and other notices.
- Bookmarks & External Links - They are used to share external links of lists.
- Calendars - RSS lists all the holidays, and various past and upcoming events.
- Law Enforcement - It aids the communities to be aware of the location and status of sex offenders.
- Search Results - Helps to track all the changes while the user is searching for any particular item.
Why Use RSS Feed?
is quickly becoming the Internet's most powerful marketing tool. They
allow people to opt-into the feeds that they are interested in. they
can also opt out at ease. You don't have to spend time maintaining the RSS feed. E-mailing to subscribers the syndicated
content is one of the major benefits of RSS. It helps to easily promote
your products and services. You can rest assured that your messages will
be delivered to the users since it has no filter problems. Those who
subscribe to your feed agree to the policy that you will deliver them
syndication without marking it as spam. RSS feeds are versatile as it
can be read on various media platforms. RSS feed is also one of the best
ways of gaining free traffic to your site.