Visitors who subscribe to a website's Rich Site Summary (RSS) feed will have all of the site's updates automatically delivered to the RSS reader of their choice the moment they are published.
Are there any websites whose updates you never want to miss? You can make sure you never miss an update by adding that website's RSS feed to an RSS reader.
RSS is an acronym that stands for Rich Site Summary though it is sometimes said to stand for Really Simple Syndication. Websites that are updated regularly, such as blogs, news sites, sports sites, weather websites, and websites for podcasts and video blogs, usually offer an RSS feed as a simple way for users to receive new content and updates automatically.
Also See: How to Subscribe to RSS Feeds
Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I use RSS rather than email subscription, social media, or just checking back to a site frequently?
There are many different ways to follow a website's updates. Let's consider some of the most popular ways:
- Email subscription: Virtually every website that is updated regularly provides the option to subscribe to an email newsletter. However, every website handles newsletters differently. Some will send you a notice every time new content is added. Other sites will send you an email on a periodic basis – once a week for instance – with all of the new content posted recently. Still others may offer a range of newsletters for you to pick from depending on your preferences. Email subscription can be great if the website you're subscribing to offers a newsletter format that fits your needs. However, if they don't, or if you don't like to sign up for newsletters, then email subscription may not be your best option.
- Social media: If you already use social media on a daily basis, consider following the updates posted by your favorite websites. Just remember that some social networks pick and choose which posts to show you, which means that you may miss many updates you'd rather see. Following your favorite site on social media is a great way to interact with others who share the same interests, but is not a great way to keep track of all of the new content that makes its way to the site.
- Checking back periodically: In theory, this strategy is great. In practice, few of us have the discipline to check a website on a regular basis. You may check it a few times during the first few weeks, but sooner or later you'll forget about it, and weeks or months will go by during which you don't remember to check for new content.
- RSS feeds: If you subscribe to the website's RSS feed, updates will be delivered directly to your RSS reader as soon as an update is published. However, to see those updates you'll have to check your RSS reader regularly, and if you subscribe to too many feeds, checking your readers may quickly become overwhelming.
There are several different ways to keep track of a website's updates. Our advice is to try the most promising method. If it doesn't work out, you can always try a different method at a later date.
How can I get started with RSS?
Getting started with RSS is really as simple as picking a reader and adding some feeds you want to follow. For more details on the mechanics of getting started with RSS, check out this article.