Everyday more and more people and websites are offering RSS (Really Simple Syndication) news feeds. It is great for businesses and websites- it is free advertising for them when people read their news feed each day, and search engines like websites which offer an RSS feed, as it shows they have interesting, changing content. Here’s how to offer one.
An RSS feed looks like this:
http://www.bigwowwebhosting.com Web Hosting News
http://www.bigwowwebhosting.com/news.php Microsoft unveils its latest plans… blah blah
The first line in the document is the XML declaration. It tells the aggregator what XML version and what character encoding is used in the document. In this feed it corresponds to the 1.0 XML specification and uses the ISO-8859-1 character set:
The next line describes what version of RSS is being used:
The next line describes the element of the document:
The next three lines describe the elements of the channel element:
http://www.bigwowwebhosting.com (link to feed/your site) Web Hosting News (description of the feed)
Then comes the element (s). The element contains the information you would like your RSS feed to show (title, link and description). You can add as many items as is required:
http://www.bigwowwebhosting.com/news.php (link to full article) Microsoft unveils its latest plans… blah blah
Lastly, the two last lines close the and elements:
As you can see RSS is pretty simple and descriptive. Just make sure you remember that all XML elements need to be closed and properly nested, XML tags are case sensitive and attribute values need to always be quoted .
You can validate your feed at http://feedvalidator.org/.
You then need to tell the world about your feed. http://www.syndic8.com -The largest RSS directory with over 300,000 feeds. http://www.daypop.com -Has over 50,000 news oriented feeds. http://www.newsisfree.com.- over 18 000 feeds
Tim Shaw is director of (Big Wow Web Hosting), a cheap and reliable web host. He has written several books and ebooks on web hosting, and has had many years experience in computers, the web and web hosting.