How To Use RSS Feeds To Keep Up To Date With Your Favourite Blogs

By now if you have had a look around Technorati and starting surfing the web using the StumbleUpon Toolbar, you will have no doubt found yourself an amazing number of blogs that you would like to keep up to date with.

In a previous post I gave a very generic introduction to the How To RSS Feeds. Today I will take you through a step by step guide on how to use RSS to subscribe to blogs.

I will use my reader (Google Reader) as an example of how to do this, but the process will be very similar regardless of which reader you choose to do.

STEP 1 – THE RSS ICON

Locate the RSS icon on the blog that you would like to subscribe to. The read arrow points out what you should be looking for. Click on the RSS icon to add it to your reader.

STEP 2 – SELECTING YOUR READER

On this page you will be given a range of web based and other type readers to choose from. For me I simply click on the Google button, which I have pointed out with the red arrow. If you were using a reader in Outlook you would choose the “View Feed XML” option.

STEP 4 – ADDING TO READER

On this page I need to choose the “Add to Google Reader” button as pointed out with the red arrow.

STEP 5 – SUCCESSFULLY SUBSCRIBED

The blog has now been added to my reader. You will note that the arrow on the left points to the Previous Item and Next Item buttons. You can use these to click through the posts that have been added to your reader.

When you add a new blog to your reader, how many items it adds to your reader will depend on what the blog owner has set up for their feed. It is usually between 5 – 10 items, but some may have more. The red arrow on the right points to the number of items that are unread for this blog, which in this case is 10.

STEP 6 – ADDING TO FOLDER

If you look to where the green arrow is pointing you will see a drop down menu titled “Feed Settings”. This allows you to manage your subscriptions efficiently by adding them to folders.

For example some of the folders that I have in my reader are mum blogs, dad blogs, craft blogs, recipe blogs. So when I click on the Feed Settings, I can scroll down and add this blog to mum blogs.

If you haven’t made any folders yet, scroll through until the end of the drop down menu and click on the “New Folder” option and name the folder as you wish. Having folders makes it easier to find blogs, if you are wishing to read one particular one.

STEP 7 – READING NEW ITEMS

When you go back to your reader, you can easily see what blogs have new items. The red arrow points to bolded blogs. If a blog is in bold, it means that there are unread items. The number in brackets, tells you exactly how many items are unread for that blog.

It also will tell you this information for the folder. In this instance Mum Blogs has new items and the actual number is 101. (As you can probably tell, I haven’t checked my reader for a couple of days!)

So now as you are web surfing, for blogs that you would like to stay updated with, just look for the RSS Icon and add them to your reader!

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