How to Use WordPress RSS Feed, What are the Benefits

Have you ever wondered how to get all the latest content from your favorite sites effortlessly? Let’s say you love to read articles from an informative website. But you have to visit their site daily to check if they published a new article. 

Instead of doing this, you can simply subscribe to their RSS feed. You can see whenever they publish a new content piece and you can read it in your RSS reader.

In this article, we will talk about what RSS Feed is, How to use RSS feed on your WordPress site and what are the benefits of using it.

What is an RSS feed and how it works

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. Here, syndication means, sharing or transferring. Using RSS, websites and web apps publish their latest content in XML (Extensible Markup Language). A WordPress RSS feed is the WP style of the standard RSS mechanism.

Social media sites often don’t show the latest content timely because of their algorithm. Your email inbox may be crowded by other emails. So they are not the answer to receiving all the latest content from your select websites.

RSS feeds are the perfect solution to this. You can just subscribe to your favorite sites’ RSS feed via an RSS reader. You’ll then find all the latest content from those sites right on your RSS reader app. 

Whenever these sites publish a new piece of content, their RSS feeds get those right away. Your RSS reader app will then fetch and display them on the RSS reader screen. So, the RSS Feed brings all of your favorite contents in “one place” for you to read whenever you want.

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From the above discussion, we hope you’ve realized what RSS feed is and how it makes your life so much easier. Now, are you interested in using this powerful tool? The good news is, your WordPress site also comes with the RSS functionality built-in. It’s time to make the best use of it!

How to use RSS feeds with WordPress

If you visit a WordPress RSS feed link directly, you would see some code. There won’t be any formatting. Remember, these XML feeds are meant for programs, not humans as the direct user. You can use feeds with a feed reader program. So don’t be surprised when you visit a feed link directly on your browser.

WordPress offers feeds for the following contents by default:

  • Latest posts: example.com/feed
  • All comments: example.com/comments/feed
  • Comments for a specific post: example.com/post-name/feed
  • Categories: example.com/category/categoryname/feed
  • Tags: example.com/tag/tagname/feed
  • Author feeds: example.com/author/authorname/feed
  • Search: example.com/?s=searchterm&feed=rss2
  • Custom post types: example.com/feed?post_type=posttype

Since WordPress feeds support custom post types, you can even add your WooCommerce products to the feed. In fact, this lets you create a dedicated feed for the WooCommerce product items.

Now you know the links to your WordPress site’s RSS feeds. As a site admin, you can promote these links so that your audience can follow your site using their favorite RSS reader. It’s that simple! Feedly is a popular RSS reader service. It has mobile and computer apps with a functional web version.

Read More: 25+ Best WooCommerce Plugins (FREE and Paid)

What if you wanted to display your favorite RSS feeds on your webpage? WordPress has a built-in feature in Gutenberg which you can use to view RSS feeds on your site. Let’s look at how we can do that:

Adding RSS feeds to a WordPress page or post

First, go to the page you want to display your RSS feed on and open it in the editor. By default, it should be the WordPress block editor aka Gutenberg. Now find and insert the native Gutenberg RSS block into the page.

Gutenberg WordPress RSS Feed block selection
Select RSS Block

Now you have the RSS block where you can paste the feed URL to view the RSS feed.

Gutenberg RSS Block

Go to the RSS feed of your favorite site and copy their feed link. For example, we will visit the CNN RSS feed.

Copy the feed URL of the stories you want to display. For this example, we will copy the URL of the “Top Stories”

Copy the top stories URL

Then paste the URL into your RSS feed block and you’re done!

Paste the URL and click ‘Use URL’

Now you can visit your page to see the “Top News” feed!

In this way, you can display the content you want on any page of your WordPress site. See how simple it was?

Do more with WordPress RSS feed plugins

Although the built-in WordPress RSS feed system is easy and effective, it doesn’t have a wide variety of features available. If you want to get more things done and harness the true features of RSS feeds, then we suggest the use of the following plugins:

  1. Feedzy RSS Feeds

As mentioned above, Feedzy is one of the best RSS feed plugins out there. It allows the user to import and use an unlimited amount of RSS feeds on their websites. In fact, you can use Feedzy to automate your blogging by publishing curated content from the internet.

Some of the key features of Feedzy RSS Feeds are:

  • You can convert the feeds into posts, pages, and custom post types
  • It is simple to install, just use shortcodes and widgets
  • Contents will be fully responsive
  • Cache feeds to decrease load time
  • Feed images will be displayed as well
  1. WP RSS Aggregator

WP RSS Aggregator is a popular RSS feed plugin for WordPress. It can assist you to turn your WordPress website into a content aggregator. You can import, merge and display content from various sources.

Some of the key features of WP RSS Aggregator are:

  • Display unlimited contents from unlimited sources
  • You can select a featured image for your feed
  • You can also filter out content based on keywords, phrases, and tags
  1. Category Specific RSS Feed Subscription

The Category Specific RSS Feed Subscription has a clean user interface and the tool itself is beginner-friendly. This plugin has a lot of positive reviews from users. Compared to other plugins, this one has a reasonable price. It is best for low-cost software.

Some of the key features of Category Specific RSS Feed Subscription are:

  • You can create tags for RSS feeds
  • Beginner friendly and easy to use
  • Compared to other plugins, price is reasonable and the core product is free
  • Friendly customer service
  • Can improve your SEO performance

Read More: ProductX Review: WooCommerce Plugin to Beautify Your Online Store

Benefits of WordPress RSS feeds

By this point, you already know how powerful the RSS feed is and how it simplifies your life. Both the readers and web publishers benefit from RSS feeds. Let’s look a bit at details of how the RSS feed benefits us:

  • RSS feed gives you the latest updates on your favorite categories from your favorite sites and portals. Whether it’s about news, sports, music, weather- as soon as it is published you will get the update.
  • It saves a lot of browsing time. RSS feed shows the summary (and the details if allowed) of the articles. This saves the users time and helps them decide what element to prioritize while browsing the internet.
  • Users can subscribe to the contents of their choice and they can unsubscribe whenever they want.
  • RSS feed is spam-free. Unlike email subscriptions, the RSS feed doesn’t spam you with unnecessary products or promotions. So your email space remains clean
  • Unsubscribing is easy and painless. Sometimes when you are unsubscribing from emails, you are presented with so many questions which might be annoying. But if you want to unsubscribe from an RSS feed, you just have to delete the feed from your aggregator.

Conclusion

There might have been one point in our lives where we had to wait for some really big news. It might have been about a big follow-up story, press release of a highly anticipated product, or updates regarding an event. 

Whatever the story is, it is impossible to sit and wait for minutes or hours for the update. It is also very annoying to keep visiting the site repeatedly waiting for the update. RSS feed is the best at solving this problem. It brings all the news, stories, etc. into “one place” and presents them to your reader as soon as the story is published. So, cheers!


Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links and we may receive a small commission if you purchase something by following them. However, we recommend services/products that we believe good to serve your purpose.

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