Friday, October 31, 2008

I Hate RSS Feeds And RSS Readers

To Many Options
Entire post or a snippet? E-mail or through a reader? Pictures or no pictures? To consolidate or to not consolidate? There are just to many options to "burning" your feed. Instead of working on building your content or helping establish yourself in your niche, you are stuck trying to work this feed to make it look pretty. Unnecessary.

Full RSS feed vs. partial RSS feed
Yeah, okay, this is kind of an addition to "to many options" but I feel this needed it's own bold headline. Darren Rowse of ProBlogger even two people debate about using full or partial RSS feeds.

A partial RSS feed will only show a small snippet of your post to your subscribers and will make them click on the link to actually read the post. This allows the reader to read the title of the article and then make his or her own decision on whether or not to visit the site and read the rest of the post. Now if you have advertising (of course you do, you are a blogger! =P ) on your site, a partial feed will not show it. So you are missing out on unique visitors and/or page views that could ultimately increase the price you charge for advertising, and that's bad.

A full feed shows the subscriber the entire post in their reader. This means they have no reason to visit your site at all. So once again, they miss out on advertising and are basically just reading a newspaper.

Less comments?
If someone reads your posts through a reader they are probably less likely to comment on the post. You want them to comment. You want to build a community around your site and less comments means there are less people contributing.

Less recognition
When someone is subscribing through a reader it is a sign that they like what you write and wish to read more. But, on the flip side there is no reason for them to return. Your site just becomes another story among hundreds of others that someone may be subscribing to.

So if readers are lame, what do you do?
Write great content that makes the reader want to come back and read your posts, but not through an RSS reader. You want your readers to bookmark the site and come back every day. Now for some people that might get annoying but if you are truly interested in the persons material, then you should be coming back and visiting.

I still keep my site available to subscribe because I know that people like to use them, I just prefer for people to bookmark my site and come back every day.


Jessi said...

Keep in mind that a lot of people won't even bother to bookmark, though, and they're unlikely to remember to check back daily, even if they like what you write.

Personally, I'd rather them subscribe to me and see when I update regularly. Occasionally they're likely to click on through to comment and hey, that's great. If they don't subscribe, it's even 'less' likely that they'll remember to check their bookmark, especially if they follow lots of sites.

Give your readers reasons to click on through from their feeder. Start a conversation....give incentive for going straight to your site. It's not all bad. :)

Boss said...

Thanks for the comment Jessi, I see what you are saying, but bookmarking has been around since the beginning of internet browsers and so I'd rather someone bookmark my site.

Most blogs update just about every day and so readers will most likely come every day. I just feel that the RSS readers take away from your site and make it less personal.

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