How to setup Feedburner with WordPress (and why it’s still awesome)

Google Feedburner

Google Feedburner – Still the best way to optimize your RSS feed

Feedburner is an RSS feed optimization and management service launched in 2004, and acquired by Google in 2007.

An RSS feed is basically a simplified version of your latest 10 or more blog articles that can be easily re-published or read on a multitude of applications and devices.

NOTE: You can change the settings for the feed that WordPress creates by logging in to Settings >> Reading.

RSS settings in WordPress

You may not use RSS but many services and people online still do. As a result it’s an important thing to have sorted out on your WordPress website.

Why would you want to use Feedburner?

  • It makes your feed compatible with all readers and devices
  • It shifts the bandwidth of reading RSS onto Googles servers instead of your own
  • It can be set to ping (notify) many web services and extend the reach of your blogs content
  • You can track the number of RSS subscribers via Feedburner stats
  • You can add a simple newsletter subscription box that automatically sends out posts to their email addresses

How to setup Feedburner with WordPress

1. Sign-in to your Google account.

2. Visit the Feedburner site.

3. Put your website URL into the Burn a feed right this instant field and click Next.

Feedburner Burn Feed
Feedburner will automatically find your main RSS Feed. Click the Next button.

Main RSS feed
4. Enter a name and final URL for your feed and click the Next button.

Feed Title Feedburner

I tend to use all lower-case for URLs as it’s easier to remember.

5. Copy down the URL of your feed and click the Skip directly to feed management link.

Feedburner URL

6. Select the Optimize tab then Smartfeed in the left sidebar, then click the Activate button.

Feedburner Smartfeed

This makes your RSS feed compatible with any reader and device.

7. Select the Publicize tab, Pingshot in the left sidebar, then click the Activate button.

Feedburner Pingshot

This notifies blogging services when you post new articles and increases the reach of your content.

8. Update your WordPress themes and links with your new RSS feed URL.

RSS feed theme input

If you use a plugin like Social Media Widget update your RSS url there as well.

You can login to your Feedburner page at any time and click on the Analyze tab to see you susbcriber stats.

If you don’t have an email sign-up form on your site you can set it up here.

13 Responses to “How to setup Feedburner with WordPress (and why it’s still awesome)”

  1. iHijinx January 26, 2013 at 3:49 am #

    Done. Thank you!

    • Herrin Larkan January 26, 2013 at 10:25 am #

      Cool Zak. Now if you ever move your blog to a self-hosted site, your RSS URL will stay the same too. Keep putting yourself out there as a writer! :-)

  2. Lisa Roberson February 1, 2013 at 8:17 am #

    Thank you so much for the step-by-step. That’s really helpful, even though I’ve been a Feedburner user for a while already.

    I’ve been afraid they are going to close up shop. Is this no longer an issue, do you think?

    • Herrin Larkan February 1, 2013 at 1:34 pm #

      I did some research on that before writing this one and found no indication that Feedburner is going to be dropped by Google any time soon. With so many people using the service, as well as RSS, It’s very unlikely.

      It’s easy to export all the current subscribers to a new system anyway.

  3. Barrie North (@compassdesign) February 14, 2013 at 11:54 am #

    Not so sure about Feedburner being closed down. The API has gone already
    http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic/from-the-feedburner-website-important-the-google-feedburner-apis-have-been-off

  4. Herrin Larkan February 14, 2013 at 6:30 pm #

    Hi Barrie. Google took down their API to save bandwidth I assume but there’s no sign at all that the Feedburner service is going anywhere. It’s still the best way to outsource your feed and make it compatible for all readers and devices. Thanks for commenting!

  5. William U. Chinebu April 28, 2013 at 7:27 am #

    Thanks a lot for this post. I found it to be very helpful. No other posts I saw came close to helping me incorporate RSS Feed on my website as this one. Again, thanks and keep up the great work.

    • Herrin Larkan April 30, 2013 at 3:44 pm #

      Thanks William. Always good to know that we’re hitting the mark in terms of easy-to-follow instructions.

  6. Josh Brown April 30, 2013 at 4:50 am #

    Thanks for this post. I had been having a little bit of trouble figuring out how to adjust the feedburner settings. I appreciated the step by step nature of your post. I agree with the above comments – other posts just didn’t provide the help I needed.

    • Herrin Larkan April 30, 2013 at 3:47 pm #

      What specifically are you having trouble with? There are plenty of other settings and gadgets in Feedburner but I only wanted to include the most crucial elements in this guide.

      Having said that I do update posts sometimes when I receive feedback so please feel free to reply here or get in touch at http://wptribe.net/contact/ – Thank you.

      • joshlaska May 15, 2013 at 7:24 am #

        Herrin,

        I suppose one of my main concerns is that I am simply not using Feedburner properly. As someone who is working hard to understand SEO and things of that nature, I have had trouble finding good articles on understanding Feedburner and its functions.

        Like I wrote, I think I got it set up properly thanks to this post. I’d assume there are many others like me floating around looking for a better understanding of Feedburner. I would certainly read anything more you had to offer to help benefit us. Maybe even writing a post on how to take it to the next level? I’d love to read that.

        Thanks again, though. Your post enabled me to at the very least get Feedburner set up.

        JB

        • Herrin Larkan May 15, 2013 at 2:46 pm #

          If you’ve setup Feedburner using this short guide you have all the basic features working that you can get the most use out of.

          The pingshot service is another way to make sure that other search engines and networks are notified when you publish new content.

          Of course there’s more we can do outside of this to promote our posts on various directories and social networks.

          But that’s another article…

          Thanks for commenting! :-)

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