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Saturday, 19 April 2008

How to increase RSS feed burn subscriptions?

Feed stats counter, is basically like a website counter, only it doesn’t show aggregate data of all the visitors of all times, only the live subscribers who bookmarked the website or visited it through feed today, which means - your daily returning and subscribing visitors. It’s a really good way to show off your website’s success to other. Let’s say you visit a blog, it looks like a good and interesting content, then you take a look at the feed counter - 15 subscribers. Eh? Guess it’s not too popular. It can do a lot of damage when you come to sell links or promote your website, people would misjudge your website’s popularity by the feed burner. So, let’s see how can we improve the situation…

  1. Forum’s last posts. Most vBulletin based forums has the ability of displaying your last blog’s post though a feed. Here comes the trick, paste your Feed Burner’s URL in that field of your profile in all the forums you participate at. Did it in 10 forums? Good, now you have 10 “subscribers” more. Cheap trick, but works perfect.

  2. Offer ads free version. If your blog is showered with annoying ads such as interstitials and inline ads, you can offer to read your blog through the feed, without ads at all. You won’t lose much money from it unless your blog has 10,000 visitors a day out of which 7,000 will subscribe. Don’t worry, not many will subscribe anyway. In this case, however, you have to offer a full feed.

  3. Put the RSS button above. As obvious as it sounds, put the RSS feed button in the upper part of your blog, and make sure the button is visible on all resolutions, and your design does not “swallow” it in any browser. This is important, remember - virtual visitors are a lazy nation, they want to have everything under their nose, so the bigger and more visible is your button, the better are your chances to get a subscription. Don’t forget, link the feed button to your feed burner’s url, and not “just” your regular feed generated by the blog. Ever since I replaced the tiny orange button at the lower part of my sidebar with the juicy, glossy big button you see this blog has at the beginning of the sidebar - the amount of my subscriptions raised from 55+ to 65+. Worth it, ain’t it?

  4. Don’t display small count. If your blog has a small subscribers count yet, do not publish it. As I said in the beginning of this post, it will look bad and cause more damage than you think. “If the blog is soooo unpopular, should I subscribe to it? Slim chance it’s good, right?” - this is visitors logic, believe me, and you don’t want them to think it about your blog.

  5. Ask friends to subscribe. No shame in asking friends to subscribe. Although they may not visit on a daily basis (which means after one day of their subscription it will be useless), but they will have you in their feed pages and may drop by sometime. Also, if they bookmark and visit through bookmarks, it will raise your daily count.

I know, nothing ground breaking in these 5 advices, but I hope they would help some of you to get started and not to just sink in despair over blog’s little subscriptions count. Good luck!

Posted by: aroeltsm, Updated at: 12:38 am

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