Everything You Need to Know About RSS Feed in WordPress

In this article we will be discussing about all the aspects of RSS feed. We will start with what RSS feed is and how it works. And then we will see some benefits of the RSS feed and give you some tips on controlling the RSS.  So let’s dive in to this discussion on everything you need to know about RSS feed in WordPress.

Everything You Need to Know About RSS Feed in WordPress

What is RSS?

RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary. In general terms it is known as the news feed. With the help of RSS, users can easily stay informed by receiving updates of their favorite websites. There is no need for users to join any site’s email newsletter or even visit the websites manually for updates. RSS saves tons of time and ensures users privacy.  Users can receive the updates in their mailbox, feed reader and other devices. RSS document includes full or summarized text, and metadata, like publishing date and author’s name.

How RSS feed work?

Reader will need Feed Reader or News Aggregator software that grabs the RSS feeds from various sites and display them for readers to read and use. With the help of feed reader you can synchronize your subscribed website in your device and read it anytime online and offline. The RSS readers subscribe to feeds by entering feed’s URL into the feed reader or by clicking on the browsers feed con.

There are some really great feed reader which include Feedly and Amphetadesk for Windows, Linux and Mac. FeedReader  and NewsGator are for Windows. There are also a number of web-based feed readers available. My Yahoo, and Google Reader are popular web-based feed readers.

Benefits of RSS Feed

RSS allows publishers to automatically syndicate their content. Due the large number of benefits, the number of websites offering the RSS feed is increasing rapidly including big names like Yahoo News. Here are some of the benefits you can gain by using RSS feed in your website.

  1. Your content becomes portable and user can even read it offline.
  2. Increases the number of your readers and subscribers. Your content will be shared more often and will move around web world faster than before.
  3. Subscribers don’t have to remember the URL of every website. Readers get all their favorite website contents in one place.
  4. Ensures security for users since they don’t have to sign up for any site’s email newsletter.

RSS feed in WordPress?

The good thing about WordPress is it automatically generates RSS feed. WordPress creates your main RSS feed at “yoursite.com/feed”. Here are some of the feed created by WordPress in our website.

Everything you need to know about RSS feed in WordPress

Changing Default WordPress Feed Settings from admin dashboard

You have the power to control the WordPress RSS feed. Even without the use of any plugin from inside dashboard you can change settings of the feed. Simply go to Settings > Reading and scroll the options.

Everything you need to know about RSS feed in WordPress

Syndicate feeds show the most recent allows you to set the number of recent items to show. Similarly, you can also decide to show either the full text or the summery of the articles in the feed.

Also Read:   How to Add Google Search in WordPress? Here's Step by Step Guide

Add Featured Image with WordPress Posts in RSS Feed

By default WordPress do not add any image into your feed. If you are not using any kinds of plugin then you can manually add featured image to your post. Simply paste the following code in the functions.php file.

function rss_post_thumbnail($content) {
    global $post;
    if(has_post_thumbnail($post->ID)) {
        $content = '<p>' . get_the_post_thumbnail($post->ID) . '</p>' . get_the_content();
    }
    return $content;
}

add_filter('the_excerpt_rss', 'rss_post_thumbnail');
add_filter('the_content_feed', 'rss_post_thumbnail');

Disable RSS Feeds in WordPress

WordPress automatically adds RSS feed to all the websites. Not everyone likes RSS feed. If you want to disable RSS feed you can either use the plugin or use some code. You can use plugins such as Disable Feeds for easily disabling RSS.

You can also use some simple lines of codes to disable RSS. Simply copy and paste following code in your functions.php file.

function disable_feed() {
    wp_die( __('No feed available') );
}

add_action('do_feed', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_rdf', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_rss', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_rss2', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_atom', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_rss2_comments', 'disable_feed', 1);
add_action('do_feed_atom_comments', 'disable_feed', 1);

Now if you check your RSS feed, it should be gone.

Some Popular RSS feed plugins for WordPress

If you want even more control with the RSS feed you will need some the help of plugins. Here is the list of some popular plugins for WordPress RSS.

  1. FEEDZY RSS Feeds
  2. RSSImport
  3. Category Specific RSS Feed Subscription
  4. RSS Post Importer
  5. WP RSS Aggregator
  6. SB RSS Feed Plus
  7. RSS News Display

Conclusion:

The popularity of RSS feed have decreased over the years but they are still the major part of any websites. There are tons of benefits you can receive simply managing the RSS feed in your WordPress website. In this article we discussed about everything you need to know about RSS feed in WordPress. We hope this article was helpful. You can check our other article on “Create and Optimize WordPress Robots.txt for SEO”. If you want to add HTML sitemap in your website then check our article on “How to Add an HTML Sitemap in WordPress“.

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Kantiman Bajracharya

Kantiman Bajracharya

Kantiman Bajracharya is a freelance web developer. He is a computer geek who has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering. He has earned lots of satisfied customers while working for numerous successful projects. He is also a WordPress theme creator and web article writer. On free time he likes reading philosophy books, traveling and playing chess.

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