This is a very valid question.
Why would you want to have someone else’s content appear on your site? What are the benefits to you as a webmaster? What are the benefits to your visitors?
There are many reasons why it is worth adding inbound feeds to your site. Below we shall take a look at just some of the most important ones.
Additional Content for your site
Everyone has heard the saying ‘Content is King’ and it is so incredibly true when it comes to Web sites. Depending on what kind of Web site you are publishing it could be the quality of the content that is important or it could be the sheer quantity of content that makes you stand out from the crowd.
There are many ways that XSitePro helps you with content and RSS Feeds is one of them.
Using RSS feeds you can enhance existing pages by providing fresh content to those pages on a regular basis, sometimes as frequently as several times a day. You can also use RSS feeds to create whole new pages of content that someone else (the feed owner) will be updating for you. Later in this chapter we’ll show you exactly how.
Search engines are constantly looking at each site on the web to see exactly what topic or topics they cover. The more focused your site is on a particular topic the more likely you are to appear in the search results when someone is searching for that topic.
It’s important to remember that there are many factors that make up how well you will rank in the search engines (inbound links, outbound links, usage of keywords and phrases, links from authority sites, frequency of updates, etc). RSS feeds can help you with several of these such as keyword usage and freshness (how frequently your site is updated).
Don’t assume that RSS feeds can be an all-conquering weapon that can take you from nowhere in the search engines to a top 10 ranking – they can’t – but if used properly they can help to focus your site on the most important keywords and phrases. This is why it is important that you choose your inbound RSS Feeds carefully. The last thing you want is lots of inbound feeds that are not closely related to the theme of your site.
Let’s look at a few examples.
Imagine you have a site specializing in weight loss.
If you added the Yahoo Weight Loss News feed to your site, it is highly likely to be laser focused on your target market and keep the focus of your sight clearly on where it should be.
However, what would happen if you also decided, for a bit of fun, to also add the MSNBC: Celebrity News feed?
Sure, there will most definitely be some celebrities who are having weight loss issues, but in reality the news coming in from that feed could be covering a multitude of topics, and most of them would have nothing at all to do with weight loss.
Using inappropriate feeds means you are diluting the keyword focus of your site whereas using laser focused feeds means that you are strengthening the theme of your site, which is exactly what you should be doing.
If you stumble across a site and find the information you are looking for, or a link to the information you are looking for, what are you likely to do? That’s right, you're more likely to visit that site again.
Feeds can be an excellent way of providing your visitors with the up-to-date information they need.
Just because someone has left your site to go and view a link on one of the feeds you’ve inserted isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Indeed, if it makes them predisposed to using your site as a reference site in the future then that can be a wonderful thing.
It’s worth mentioning at this point that the XSitePro RSS Wizard has the ability to open any links that are clicked on from feeds in a new window, which means your site will remain open in the background so that visitors will return to it as soon as they’ve finished browsing the site they clicked through to.
Have you ever visited a site that had a copyright message at the bottom saying:
Did it give the impression that this site had not been updated in a very long time?
The same is true of web content in general. If your site looks as though it never, or very rarely, gets updated this will leave the wrong impression with visitors.
On the flip side. What happens when you visit sites that include the latest news of what’s happening in that particular niche? It makes you feel that the site is being regularly updated and so is worth visiting again in the future.
Keeping sites up-to-date can be incredibly time consuming, but using the XSitePro RSS Feed Wizard means you can insert feeds into your site that will be updated automatically, which means you can focus on other things.
Another important consideration as far as freshness is concerned are search engines. Search engines love fresh content and will almost always give a boost to sites that are regularly updated.
However, it must be remembered that search engines are clever enough to know what’s being updated via feeds and what’s being updated by the webmaster so don’t rely solely on feeds to keep your site up-to-date. Do some updating work yourself from time-to-time and let the feeds keep the momentum going while you’re having a break.