Publish a full RSS feed, or a teasers only ?
Have you ever asked yourself the question to feature full blogposts in your RSS feed, or to only publish a teaser? Maybe you should!
I used my personal blog with a humble 700-800 RSS subscribers, as a test case.
Up until recently, I published my full blogposts using Feedburner. Back in April, I had too much time on my hands, and decided to experiment with a teaser:
How? Easy! In Feedburner, I used the “Optimize” – “Summary Burner” option, to truncate the feed to the first 500 characters of any post in my RSS feed:
Tonight, four months later, was the time to check if truncating the feed caused any traffic difference on my blog… And surprise, surprise. Google Analytics showed a significant increase in traffic originating from my RSS subscribers: Since I shortened the feeds on my blog, the traffic coming from my RSS feed went up fivefold:
Even more interesting was that the visitors coming from the RSS feed, had a completely different behaviour than the average visitors on my site:
- First of all, they spend twice as much time on my blog than the average visitor;
- While on the blog, they 33% of them also read at least one other post (versus a site average of only 20%);
- …And they read 33% more pages than average visitor
The explanation is obvious:
The people subscribing to your RSS feed are amongst the most loyal readers of your blog. They are inherently interested in the kind of content you generate.
If you publish an RSS feed with full blogposts, most of them will read the RSS feed, and not go to your blog. If you ‘tease’ them with a truncated RSS feed, they will want to read the full post, and will go onto your blog. Once they get to see your actual blog, they will be more eager than the ‘average visitor’ to ‘explore’ other content on your blog, discovering new content as they go along.
So is it worth while truncating your RSS feed? You bet!
Icon courtesy FastIcon